Hayley Busby's Transfer Journey Is A Success Story
“Buzz bomb! Buzz bomb! Buzz bomb!” was a commonly heard chant in the Cowgirls’ home stadium when Hayley Busby approached the plate.
The Oklahoma State player had an electric 2021 season with 19 home runs, and quickly became a fan favorite. Busby has seen great success with the Cowgirls, however, Oklahoma State wasn’t always her home.
A transfer from Virginia, Busby came to OSU in pursuit of a personal dream. After her sophomore year in college, she knew the place she was at wasn’t aligned with her personal goals. This realization sparked her decision to transfer.
Having watched the sport since she was a little girl, Busby spoke of her personal dream to win the Women’s College World Series. Oklahoma State, who had made eight WCWS appearances by the time Busby was considering her transfer options, had its eye on a national title, which was well-aligned with Busby's personal goals.
“My goal is to win the WCWS,” Busby said. “And I know we are more than capable of that.”
Busby garnered first-team All-Big 12 honors in 2021. During the regular season, she ranked fifth in the Big 12 in home runs and slugging percentage, while ranking seventh in doubles and 11th in RBI.
Despite her accomplishments, Busby acknowledges that her success did not come without its struggles.
“I almost felt like I was not good enough to play at Oklahoma State when I first got there because I was around players who were as good as, if not better than, me,” Busby said. “I was not used to that at all.”
While doubt did sometimes creep in, Busby was able to create a new and more beneficial approach to her game at Oklahoma State this past spring.
“I changed my mindset to, ‘these girls are here to make me better and I am here to make them better,’” she added.
Realizing that she was, in fact, more than good enough to be where she was served as the catalyst for her success, though she is still working on the mental side of her game.
“This game takes a toll on your mental health,” Busby said. “You have to be willing to make adjustments at any time.”
Luckily, Busby's adjustment to Oklahoma State was not too difficult thanks to some family connections she had in Stillwater. Her grandfather and mother are Oklahoma State alumni, and her mother was raised in Stillwater.
“My adjustment was easy because I was closer to family in Oklahoma and it made the transferring process much easier,” she added.
Not only did her family make her transition easier to Oklahoma from Virginia, but her new team and head coach Kenny Gajewski welcomed her openly and warmly. After her official visit, Busby was sold on what the Cowgirls had to offer.
As for other players who are either making their collegiate decision or thinking of transferring, Busby says a big focus should be placed on shared alignment of values.
“I would advise young players to take their time when making their decisions on where to go to college,” Busby said. “College is supposed to be the best four years of your life. You want to make the best decision for both you and your future. Go somewhere that incorporates all of your goals, both academic and athletic.”