Collins, Fredrick enter transfer portal

Published 5:20 pm Monday, April 24, 2023

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Kentucky Today

Damion Collins and CJ Fredrick will finish out their careers elsewhere after the two Kentucky players announced they were entering the transfer portal on Friday.

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Fredrick, who transferred to Kentucky after beginning his collegiate career at Iowa, will graduate in May. Fredrick is considering transferring to another program or playing professionally overseas.

“It has been a dream come true to play for coach Calipari, the University of Kentucky, and the best fans in the world in Big Blue Nation,” Fredrick said in a social media post. “This experience has been so much better than I could ever have imagined. I have learned so much from Coach Cal on and off the court, and above all I am most grateful to him for teaching me how to be a servant leader.”

Fredrick spent the 2021-22 season rehabilitating a leg injury and returned last season and played in 27 games and averaged 6.1 points and 1.5 assist per game after missing most of the last half of the season with a rib injury.

“Having to deal with a couple of freakish injuries, I hope everyone knows that I’ve given my heart and soul to you and I’m proud that I’ll always got to be a Wildcat,” Fredrick said. “… having fulfilled this lifetime dream, I feel it’s in my best interest to explore every option for my future for so many reasons.”

Collins dealt with the adversity of his father, Ben Collins’ death early in the season.

“Daimion Collins had a year I wouldn’t wish on anyone and has been through more than any player should, including losing his grandfather in the last week,” Kentucky coach John Calipari said in a tweet. “ He’s a talented player & a good person with a bright future. Daimion and his family know that I’ll always be here for them.”

Collins added that he has enjoyed his time in Lexington despite the circumstances.

“In the last two years, I have encountered so many amazing people and had some incredible memories that I will cherish a lifetime,” he said. “To my teammates, thank you for the strong bond and brotherhood. We challenged and supported each other every day, and it actually made us better. I’m forever grateful for the valuable experiences we shared together.

“I want to take a moment to thank Coach Cal and staff, for giving me the opportunity to represent BBN and continue my growth as a young man. While this has been a difficult decision, it’s the best decision for my future.”

Collins averaged 2.9 points and two rebounds per game last season and played in 52 games as a Wildcat.