College Basketball

Yale’s Atkinson, Ivy co-POY, to transfer in spring

Yale forward Paul Atkinson, who shared Ivy League Player of the Year honors last season, announced Monday he planned to graduate and transfer in the spring.

Atkinson is already in the transfer portal.

Atkinson has played three seasons at Yale but will have a season of eligibility remaining in the spring regardless of whether he plays this season due to the NCAA granting winter student-athletes another year of eligibility.

“My four years at Yale have been nothing short of amazing,” Atkinson wrote on Twitter. “The coaching staff has taught me so much and helped me mature to the basketball player I am today. I especially want to thank coach [James] Jones who has been nothing but supportive of me in all my decisions. I also want to thank my family and loved ones for supporting me in my decision making.

“With that, I will be graduating from Yale this upcoming spring and entering the transfer portal with a year of eligibility remaining.”

Atkinson, a 6-foot-10 power forward from West Palm Beach, Florida, was a unanimous first-team All-Ivy League selection last season and shared Player of the Year honors with Penn‘s AJ Brodeur. He averaged 17.6 points and 7.3 rebounds last season, including six 20-point outings and four double-doubles in Ivy League play.

Atkinson is the fourth Ivy League player to enter the transfer portal this fall, following three Harvard players. It’s a growing trend for Ivy League players to graduate-transfer, due to the conference not granting redshirts nor permitting graduate students to play athletics. At least 10 Ivy players made the decision to graduate and transfer last spring, including five players who ended up at the power-conference level.

The Ivy League is one of two conferences not expected to play nonconference games this season, along with the Patriot League.

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