Official: Stanford Star NiJaree Canady Enters the Transfer Portal

The Sooners will be active in the portal to add a pair of pitchers, and the pool of players in the transfer portal just got a lot more talented.
Stanford's NiJaree Canady (24) walks back the pitching circle after Oklahoma scored two runs in the ninth inning during a softball game between the Oklahoma Sooners and Stanford in the Women's College World Series at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in  in Oklahoma City, Monday, June, 5, 2023.
Stanford's NiJaree Canady (24) walks back the pitching circle after Oklahoma scored two runs in the ninth inning during a softball game between the Oklahoma Sooners and Stanford in the Women's College World Series at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium in in Oklahoma City, Monday, June, 5, 2023. / SARAH PHIPPS/THE OKLAHOMAN / USA TODAY

The biggest domino in the softball transfer portal just fell. 

Stanford superstar and reigning USA Softball Player of the Year NiJaree Canady has entered the transfer portal after reports surfaced over the weekend that she could be on the move.

Canady led the Cardinal back to the Women’s College World Series, but Stanford ultimately didn’t have enough on the roster to support Canady and reach the Championship Series. 

As a sophomore, the dominant right-hander closed with a 0.73 ERA after pitching 230 2/3 innings. She struck out 337 batters, allowing just 44 walks and 24 earned runs all year. 

She continued to develop her off-speed offerings, allowing her to add another wrinkle from her breakout freshman year. 

The Topeka, KS, product will have two years of eligibility remaining at her next stop, and Oklahoma will be in the horde of teams chasing the services of Canady. 

The Sooners are no strangers to high-profile pitcher transfers. 

A year ago, Jordy Bahl entered the portal to return to Nebraska after mowing through the field at the 2023 WCWS — including Canady’s Cardinal. 

OU head coach Patty Gasso and pitching coach Jennifer Rocha got active, eventually landing Kelly Maxwell to spearhead the 2024 pitching staff. 

In years prior, the Sooners have also had incredible success with a number of transfer pitchers. 

Over Oklahoma’s most recent four-peat alone, the Sooners have won with Giselle Juarez, Shannon Saile, Hope Trautwein, Alex Storako, Maxwell and Karlie Keeney, who all started their careers elsewhere.

The Sooners will lose 10 members of the 2024 national title team to graduation, and three others transferred out. 

With eight returners and eight incoming freshmen, OU has five roster spots to fill in the transfer portal

Left-handed pitcher Kierston Deal is slated to return for her junior season, as is reliever Paytn Monticelli. The Sooners signed freshman left-hander Audrey Lowry in the 2024 recruiting class. 

Oklahoma is expected to pursue two arms via the portal, and landing Canady would help Gasso reload with one of the nation’s premier pitchers as OU heads into the SEC in 2025. 


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Ryan Chapman

RYAN CHAPMAN

Ryan is deputy editor at AllSooners and covers a number of sports in and around Norman and Oklahoma City. Working both as a journalist and a sports talk radio host, Ryan has covered the Oklahoma Sooners, the Oklahoma City Thunder, the United States Men’s National Soccer Team, the Oklahoma City Energy and more. Since 2019, Ryan has simultaneously pursued a career as both a writer and a sports talk radio host, working for the Flagship for Oklahoma sports, 107.7 The Franchise, as well as AllSooners.com. Ryan serves as a contributor to The Franchise’s website, TheFranchiseOK.com, which was recognized as having the “Best Website” in 2022 by the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters. Ryan holds an associate’s degree in Journalism from Oklahoma City Community College in Oklahoma City, OK.