Ioannis Papapetrou Leaving Texas to Play for Olympiacos BC of Greece

21 Aug By
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Head coach confirms sophomore forward will sign professional contract in Greece. (Image via USA Today Sports)

Head coach confirms sophomore forward will sign professional contract in Greece. (Image via USA Today Sports)

According to Andy Katz and Jeff Goodman of ESPN, Ioannis Papapetrou, the leading scorer returning for Barnes and the Longhorns will be leaving the program, as forward Papapetrou has reportedly signed a professional contract with Olympiacos BC of Greece. Citing a source, ESPN is also reporting that the deal is worth in the neighborhood of $2 million, and that it is for five years.

Here is what Rick Barnes had to say:

“We need to be happy for Papi and his family, and all of us wish him the best. There’s no question that Papi wanted to be here at The University of Texas, and it was going to take something very significant for him not to be here. And that’s exactly what happened.

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The professional team in Greece approached Papi and his family again this week before he was set to leave to come back to campus, and the team basically created a contract that catered exactly to his needs and the wishes of his family. In the end, the contract was too much for him and his family to say ‘no’ to in their situation.

We will obviously miss him a lot, not only as a basketball player but more as a person. For me personally, I love the guy and the type of person he has become.”

Papapetrou played in all 34 games for Texas last year (25 starts) and ranked third on the team in rebounding (4.4 rpg) and assists (41) and fourth in scoring (8.3 ppg) while averaging 24.3 minutes per contest. In July, Papapetrou competed for Greece at the Under-20 European Championship and led the team in scoring (15.9 ppg) and ranked second in rebounding (5.3 rpg), steals (12) and minutes (33.0 mpg) during the 10-game tournament.

James Schleicher is the publisher of Horns Illustrated magazine. He's also a fifth generation Texan and lifelong Austinite. Follow @HornsIllus twitter to keep up with all things Horns Illustrated.