Feb. 8, 2012
TUCSON, Ariz. - It has long been stated that Arizona Wildcats have had an impact on the National Basketball Association, and with the Wall Street Journal's help, it can now be quantified in terms of salary.
In a listing published today of the most successful collegiate programs in terms of NBA salaries earned since 1985, Arizona ranks third nationally with more than $737 million in total earnings. That figure ranks behind only North Carolina ($852M) and Duke ($808M) Here are the top five schools:
Rnk School Earnings 1. North Carolina $852 million 2. Duke $808 3. ARIZONA $737 4. Georgetown $727 5. Michigan $715Arizona has had a total of 36 players drafted by NBA organizations since 1985, the year the NCAA Tournament expanded to 64 teams (presently 68). There have been as least eight Arizona alumni on active NBA rosters in each of the last 12 seasons, including nine of those years with 10 or more. In 2011-12, there are 10 former Wildcats on current NBA rosters.
Arizona's earnings make up a whopping 27 percent of the total earnings of current Pac-12 Conference members. Additionally, UA's total is 48 percent higher than the next closest conference program.
Arizona (16-8, 7-4 Pac-12) next will be in action on Thursday, Feb. 9, vs. Colorado. Tip-off in McKale Center is scheduled for 7 p.m. MST and can be seen nationally on ESPN.