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Michigan Basketball: Where Are the Fab Five Now?

Zach DirlamSenior Analyst IIJanuary 14, 2017

Michigan Basketball: Where Are the Fab Five Now?

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    The Michigan Wolverines basketball program has yet to return to the heights the Fab Five took it to in the early 1990s, and all of the members of the 1991 recruiting class have moved on to careers outside of professional basketball.

    The Fab Five were all part of a major revolution in college basketball, brought a significant amount of attention to the issue of whether or not college athletes should be paid and made back-to-back NCAA national title games in 1992 and 1993.

    Where are all of the members of the Fab Five today, though? Click ahead to find out!

Ray Jackson

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    Despite being an intricate part of the Fab Five's success, Ray Jackson never went on to stardom in the NBA like some of the others from the Michigan Wolverines' fabled 1991 recruiting class. In fact, Jackson did not play a single game of professional basketball outside of the Continental Basketball Association.

    Jackson, who stayed at Michigan all four years with Jimmy King before turning pro, tried out for the New York Knicks in 1995 and the Detroit Pistons in 1996 before being cut by both teams. 

    The 6'6", 220-pounder played one season with the Grand Rapids Hoops in 1995-96 and won the CBA rookie of the year award, but Jackson never wound up on an NBA roster, which led to him pursuing other opportunities outside of professional basketball.

     "I was never jealous of the other guys," Jackson told LZ Granderson of ESPN.com last year. "I just wanted the opportunity to show what I could do. I played in the CBA, I played overseas I did all I could to try to get in the NBA, and it just wasn't meant to be."

    The Austin, Texas native has since returned home and currently runs a non-profit organization known as Ray Jackson's Rising Stars. Jackson founded the company in 2005 with his childhood friend Kevin Robinson.

    The goal of the Rising Stars is to "provide social, educational, and recreational opportunities for children from diverse backgrounds so they may become contributing members of their families and communities."

Jimmy King

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    The only other member of the Fab Five who used all four years of his eligibility for the Michigan Wolverines is Jimmy King, who averaged 12.2 points per game over the course of his college career in Ann Arbor.

    After being drafted by the Toronto Raptors in the second round of the 1995 NBA draft, King bounced around between the NBA, IBL, ABA, Venezuela and Poland for a decade before calling it quits in 2005.

    Over the course of his professional career, King averaged 4.5 points per game in the NBA and managed to win a CBA title and MVP award with the Quad City Thunder in 1998.

    In addition, King competed for the United States national team in the 1998 FIBA World Championships, which were held in Greece. The Americans won the bronze medal.

    Today, King works with the HYPE Athletics Community in Wayne County and is the president of J King Solar Technologies.

Juwan Howard

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    Not a single member of the Fab Five had won an NCAA or NBA title until former Michigan Wolverines power forward Juwan Howard finally ended the championship drought by earning a ring as a reserve with the Miami Heat in 2012.

    Howard left the Wolverines after averaging 20.8 points per game as a junior, and the Washington Bullets drafted the 6'9", 250-pounder with the No. 5 overall pick in the 1994 NBA draft.

    The Chicago, Illinois native played in the NBA for 18 seasons and is unlikely to return to the league after the Heat opted to not renew Howard's contract, though the former All-American has no plans to retire at this time.

    While Howard awaits a call from an NBA team, he will be devoting time to the Juwan Howard Foundation, which the one-time NBA All-Star founded in 1994. The foundation provides educational assistance and recreational opportunities to at-risk inner city children.

    Additionally, Howard is the founder of an online book club, which is "designed to motivate and bring together students in grades 3rd-8th, which have a love for reading."

Jalen Rose

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    Not only did Jalen Rose turn in a successful 13-year NBA career, the former Michigan Wolverines star has found a niche as a sports analyst as well.

    Rose was drafted by the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the 1994 NBA draft, and went on to play for the Indiana Pacers, Chicago Bulls, Toronto Raptors, New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns throughout the course of his professional career.

    Since retiring from the NBA in 2007, Rose has been an NBA analyst for ESPN, and recently joined the network's College GameDay crew.

    The Detroit, Michigan product has also been an analyst for ESPN/ABC's NBA studio show this year and founded the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy, which is a public charter high school in Rose's hometown. 

Chris Webber

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    The grand jewel of the Fab Five is none other than Chris Webber, and, much like Jalen Rose, the former Michigan Wolverines great has found success in front of the camera as an NBA analyst for NBA TV and TNT after an outstanding professional basketball career.

    Webber is a five-time NBA All-Star, and made the All-NBA First Team in 2001 before retiring due to a lingering knee injury in 2008.

    The 6'10", 245-pounder averaged over 20 points and nine rebounds per game during his time in the NBA, and had his number retired by the Sacramento Kings shortly after finishing his 15-year career.

    Most recently, the Detroit Country Day alum announced he will be writing a book detailing his life, career and the Ed Martin scandal, which single-handedly demolished Michigan's basketball program during the early 2000s.

    As a part of the severe NCAA sanctions levied against the Wolverines, Webber has not been associated with the Michigan program since 2003, but both sides will have an opportunity to reconcile in May 2013.

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