basketball-men-d1 flag

Daniel Wilco | | October 16, 2018

The colleges with the most players on NBA opening day rosters

USA Today Sports Images Kevin Knox Kentucky Knicks

As of the NBA's opening day, there are 115 NCAA schools with a former player on an NBA roster. The one with the most representatives shouldn’t be much of a surprise: Kentucky.

There are currently 30 former Wildcats spread throughout the NBA, including 2018 first round picks Kevin Knox (New York Knicks) and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (LA Clippers). Those 30 players are spread among 18 teams, but the most Kentucky-saturated roster in the league belongs to the Sacramento Kings, who have Willie Cauley-Stein, Skal Labissiere, De’Aaron Fox, and Wenyen Gabriel among their ranks. In total, more than 5 percent of all NBA players went to Kentucky.

Duke is the only other school with more than 20 players in the NBA, at 25. Four of those are in their first year, as Marvin Bagley III (Sacramento Kings), Wendell Carter Jr. (Chicago Bulls), Grayson Allen (Utah Jazz) and Gary Trent Jr. (Portland Trail Blazers) were all drafted in 2018.

Just six other schools have double-digit players on NBA rosters, and all eight of the schools come from power conferences (ACC, Big 12, Big Ten, Big East Pac-12, SEC). Those conferences account for 80 percent of all college players currently on NBA rosters.

Conference NBA players
ACC 82
Pac-12 69
SEC 63
Big 12 41
Big Ten 39
Big East 31
AAC 24
Mountain West 10
A-10 10
West Coast 5
Ohio Valley 5
Big West 4
Patriot 4
Horizon 2
Ivy 1
Big South 1
Big Sky 1

In total, 83.2 percent of NBA players got to the league via NCAA schools.

Here’s the full ranking of every NCAA school with players on NBA opening day rosters:

School Conference NBA Players
University of Kentucky SEC 30
Duke University ACC 25
University of California Los Angeles Pac-12 17
University of Arizona Pac-12 12
University of Kansas Big 12 12
University of North Carolina ACC 12
University of Texas at Austin Big 12 10
Indiana University Big Ten 8
University of Michigan Big Ten 8
University of Washington Pac-12 8
Villanova University Big East 8
Michigan State University Big Ten 7
Syracuse University ACC 7
University of Southern California Pac-12 7
University of California Pac-12 6
University of Connecticut AAC 6
University of Florida SEC 6
University of Louisville ACC 6
Wake Forest University ACC 6
Creighton University Big East 5
Iowa State University Big 12 5
Marquette University Big East 5
Ohio State University Big Ten 5
Texas A&M University SEC 5
University of Colorado Pac-12 5
Baylor University Big 12 4
Georgia Institute of Technology ACC 4
Louisiana State University SEC 4
North Carolina State University ACC 4
Southern Methodist University AAC 4
University of Cincinnati AAC 4
University of Memphis AAC 4
University of Oregon Pac-12 4
University of Virginia ACC 4
University of Wisconsin Big Ten 4
Boston College ACC 3
Florida State University ACC 3
Georgetown University Big East 3
Gonzaga University West Coast 3
Kansas State University Big 12 3
Purdue University Big Ten 3
Stanford University Pac-12 3
University of Arkansas SEC 3
University of Maryland Big Ten 3
University of Miami ACC 3
University of Missouri SEC 3
University of Nevada Las Vegas Mountain West 3
University of Notre Dame ACC 3
University of Oklahoma Big 12 3
University of Tennessee SEC 3
University of Utah Pac-12 3
Vanderbilt University SEC 3
Wichita State University AAC 3
Xavier University Big East 3
Butler University Big East 2
Fresno State Mountain West 2
George Washington University A-10 2
Murray State University Ohio Valley 2
New Mexico State University WAC 2
Providence College Big East 2
Saint Joseph's University A-10 2
Saint Mary's College of California West Coast 2
Texas Tech University Big 12 2
University of Alabama SEC 2
University of California Santa Barbara Big West 2
University of Georgia SEC 2
University of Houston AAC 2
University of Pittsburgh ACC 2
University of South Carolina SEC 2
Virginia Commonwealth University A-10 2
Washington State University Pac-12 2
Arizona State University Pac-12 1
Belmont University Ohio Valley 1
Boise State University Mountain West 1
Boston University Patriot 1
Bradley University MVC 1
Bucknell University Patriot 1
Cal Poly Big West 1
Long Beach State Big West 1
College of Charleston CAA 1
Colorado State University Mountain West 1
Davidson College A-10 1
DePaul University Big East 1
Harvard University Ivy 1
Illinois State University MVC 1
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Horizon 1
Lehigh University Patriot 1
Louisiana Tech University C-USA 1
Marshall University C-USA 1
Missouri State MVC 1
Molloy DII 1
Morehead State University Ohio Valley 1
Norfolk State University MEAC 1
Northeastern University CAA 1
Oklahoma State University Big 12 1
Old Dominion University C-USA 1
Oregon State University Pac-12 1
Seton Hall University Big East 1
St. Bonaventure University A-10 1
St. John's University Big East 1
Tennessee State University Ohio Valley 1
Tulane University AAC 1
University of Dayton A-10 1
University of Illinois Big Ten 1
University of Louisiana at Lafayette Patriot 1
University of Nevada Reno Mountain West 1
University of New Mexico Mountain West 1
University of Rhode Island A-10 1
University of South Carolina Upstate Big South 1
University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Horizon 1
University of Wyoming Mountain West 1
Valparaiso University MVC 1
Weber State University Big Sky 1
West Virginia University Big 12 1
Western Kentucky University C-USA 1

Data compiled from and the NBA's official roster sheet

Florida State rises to No. 4, Colorado, Duke enter Week 2 AP Top 25

Week 1 of college football saw two unranked teams upset TCU and Clemson and FSU steamroll over LSU — this noise has caused a major shift in the top 25 rankings. Here is the full AP Poll for Week 2.

College basketball's 9 winningest teams

Here are the top nine college basketball programs in terms of all-time wins.

The winningest DI men's college basketball programs from every state

These are the winningest Division I men's college basketball program in every state, ranked by total number of wins and winning percentage.

Subscribe To Email Updates

Enter your information to receive emails about offers, promotions from and our partners