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Bush is poised to sign with Sun Devils


Swimming — The former NHS standout and San Jose transfer believes she will get the total package at Arizona State

Choosing a college for the second time, former Newberg High School and San Jose State swimmer Alysha Bush wanted to make sure she made the right decision.

So while Bush was leaning toward transferring to Arizona State over Arizona in June, she waited a couple of weeks before letting the coaches know during the second week of July that she will compete for the Sun Devils.

“I didn’t want to rush it,” Bush said. “I had time, so I figured I might as well take advantage of that and really make sure it’s the right choice for me.”’

Bush then made her decision public on July 13 via Twitter: “You have to chase your dreams wherever they run. So excited to be swimming as a Sun Devil next month. #ASU #PAC12.”Bush

If she was choosing just on swimming alone, Bush likely would have pledged her services to the more-established and higher-ranked Wildcats, but took a much broader perspective when weighing her options.

That included making list of pros and cons for which she couldn’t find a negative when it came to ASU. One of the pros was that ASU has an agreement to offer in-state tuition to Oregon students.

“At this point I want to choose a school that’s the total package,” Bush said. “I’ll swim for three years, but I have to work the rest of my life, so it all has to be right for me.”

Bush, who will technically be a walk-on because of the late timing of her transfer, said her application is being processed, but has been assured by her athletic advisor at the school that she will be accepted and that she has already worked out her financial aid and living situations.

Helping push Arizona State over the top was the good vibe she felt with the team and coaching staff, which allowed her to feel connected pretty quickly. Bush is especially excited to work with sprints coach Shane Pendleton.

“He’s very energetic and passionate about what he’s doing,” Bush said. “He’s very creative with the training. That’s important for sprinters not to get in a rut. You have to mix it up.”

Bush also said having learned how to adapt to living away from home at San Jose State should help her transition smoothly, but also that having been in college for a year helped her take a better approach when it came time to choose the second time around.

“I had a pretty rough year at San Jose, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything because it taught me a lot,” Bush said. “I’m kind of over the whole flashiness of college. I see it more in black and white, what’s important and what I need to do. When I went on my recruiting trips this time it wasn’t about fun. I’m here to train, get to NCAAs and get my degree.”

Bush is now training daily with the Chehalem Swim Team and working out with NHS track and field head coach Brandon Ramey, while also teaching some private swim lessons.

She plans to compete in the 13-and-over state championships and Western Zone championships this summer and will head to Tempe for orientation Aug. 11.

“I will be right in the mix with the sprinters,” Bush said. “So I will have girls pushing me and girls to chase. I think that’s a perfect spot for me to stay competitive. My ultimate goal is to make NCAAs and hopefully I’ll get that by conference. That’s ambitious, but that’s what I want.”