OSU Softball All-American Kelly Maxwell Announces She is Entering Transfer Portal

OSU softball star Kelly Maxwell, an All-American for the Cowgirls and one of the best pitchers in the country, announced on Friday that she has entered the transfer portal, confirming a shocking report late Thursday from Extra Inning Softball. Maxwell will do so as a graduate transfer, where she will be eligible immediately and can play out her college career in one final season as a super senior.

“From the moment I stepped on campus, you welcomed me with open arms,” she said in a caption on Instagram addressed to Stillwater and OSU. “The support you have given me throughout the past 5 years has been a dream come true. As you may have heard, I have made the decision to enter the transfer portal. This was not an easy decision but one that I felt was best, for my own personal happiness. Thank you for being there and supporting me as I made some of the best memories of my life. I will truly miss you. Go pokes.”

Just months ago, Maxwell more or less committed to returning to OSU in 2024 ahead of what turned out to be her second consecutive All-American campaign in Stillwater. Then, in 2023 — a season after earning consensus All-American honors and earning Big 12 Co-Pitcher of the Year — she posted a 16-7 record with a 1.91 ERA while striking out 229 batters in 142.2 innings. From 2021-23 she earned First Team All-Big 12 recognition for her efforts as one of the best on the bump.

Things may have changed in recent months, however, in part due to the retirement of OSU pitching coach John Bargfeldt, though it is unclear if it was a deciding factor. Also potentially in play here: OU is a rumored candidate to land her services and has a spot open as its ace pitcher after Sooners star Jordy Bahl transferred to Nebraska last month in a surprising move.

Over her career, Maxwell has posted a staggering 1.58 ERA, a 58-20 record and 746 strikeouts. She enters the portal on the heels of her redshirt senior season that just ended, making her eligible for one final super senior season as a grad transfer.