Arizona Basketball

Arizona Wildcats Sports Illustrated cover slideshow: Brandon Ashley latest addition

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Brandon Ashley

Brandon Ashley

Arizona Wildcats athletes have now claimed 14 Sports Illustrated covers, regionally and nationally, with junior forward Brandon Ashley shown on this week’s regional cover of its 2014-15 season preview edition.

The overall total is 15 if Luke Walton’s Sports Illustrated on Campus (now a defunct publication) cover on Feb. 5, 2004, is counted.

Ashley (also a subject of a detailed ESPN story today) is the third Arizona athlete in the last year to grace the Sports Illustrated cover, all of them regionally.

The others are Nick Johnson on March 20, 2014, for the Sports Illustrated NCAA tournament preview edition, and Nick Foles on Dec. 10, 2013.

“Blessed,” Ashley Tweeted today. “It is truly an honor to be on the cover of Sports Illustrated.”

Walton is the former Wildcat who has graced the cover of Sports Illustrated the most with three appearances, including the SI on Campus. Similar to Ashley this year, Walton was featured on the college hoops preview regional cover with teammate Jason Gardner on Nov. 25, 2002.

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Brandon Ashley graces the 14th Sports Illustrated cover that has included an Arizona athlete

Brandon Ashley graces the 14th Sports Illustrated cover that has included an Arizona athlete


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The title of that issue before the 2002-03 season: “Arizona No. 1: College Hoops”.

The SI this week lists Arizona as No. 2 behind Kentucky.

Another season-preview SI cover was in 2005 when the Wildcats were picked No. 6 nationally by the magazine. The cover was a picture of Arizona players — including Mustafa Shakur and Hassan Adams — running sprints toward the camera.

The Arizona football team has one cover, the “Rock Solid” issue when the Wildcats were picked as the 1994 preseason No. 1. Tedy Bruschi and four of his “Desert Swarm” teammates were pictured on the cover.

Bruschi and Walton are the only Wildcats on multiple covers. Bruschi was also shown on the cover of the Jan. 24, 2005, edition that highlighted SI’s coverage of the NFL playoffs that year.

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ALLSPORTSTUCSON.com publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner. He also writes articles for Bleacher Report and Lindy’s College Sports.

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