One of the all-time great Wisconsin athletes is finally a true Wisconsin Alumni. Over the weekend Michael Finley graduated from the University of Wisconsin; fulfilling a lifelong dream of his. The 6-foot-7 small forward left for the NBA as the Badgers’ all-time leading scorer with 2,147 points from 1991-95.
Over the course of his NBA career the sharpshooting forward amassed over $138 million dollars in salary — but that didn’t stop him from completing his education. It’s a feel good story, especially considering the recent news Finley made during the Badgers’ run to the Final Four almost two months ago. He promoted on his personal twitter page that he would buy a drink for any Wisconsin alumni that made the trip to North Texas to watch the Badgers play; how awesome is that? He obviously still has a deep connection with Madison.
Finley also found himself on our very own Wisconsin Badgers Basketball Mount Rushmore. He more than belonged there, as he left Madison as perhaps the most well-known player in Wisconsin basketball history. In the NBA, Finley was a two-time all-star for the Dallas Mavericks and a won a ring in 2007 with the San Antonio Spurs. He eventually retired in 2010 as a member of the Boston Celtics.
His story is an encouraging story to anyone thinking it is too late to go back to school. Finley is 41 years old and obviously still looking to add to his life’s experiences and accomplishments. I can only imagine how many people attempted to pose with him after the graduation ceremony. For those who are curious, he majored in and graduated with a degree in business.
In a world vastly filled with negative and arbitrary stories it’s nice to see a story about a man accomplishing a goal two decades in the making. We at Badger of Honor salute you, Finley. May you continue to rise on to bigger and better things!