*This article was published on the Western Carolina Journalist*
It is the bottom of the eighth inning, everyone is tired and ready to finish out the game strong with not much energy left. That is…until you hear the song Sandstorm come over the sound system.
“The Icon WillyB” has removed his shirt and is doing his famous dance to get the crowd pumped up to finish out the last inning and a half.
The famous Darude song has become a tradition in the bottom of the eighth inning every game for the baseball team due to the very wild and fun pump up dance from Will Busch. This dance that has gone viral around WCU, reaching down to the Charlotte area and even to the MLB, started at Western in the 2017 season, but Busch has been doing it for years.
“It is so electric to see him and it gets the crowd very excited! He also supports all of us every game and I would consider him one of the best superfans in the nation,” said senior pitcher, Jake Niezen.
Watch the wild dance in the video below
Busch, who is from the Lake Norman/Charlotte area, went to Lake Norman Charter where he got his start doing the fun and very entertaining dance.
“It started sophomore year of high school, at the football games where we would have small tailgates in the parking lots beforehand. But before we went into the stadium we would play Sandstorm and I would just dance to it to have some fun,” said Busch.
Going back even further to 8th grade, where his teacher would play music before every power point to get everyone active so they could pay attention, Busch was always dancing ‘funny’ just to express himself.
His style of dance quickly became a hit in high school and he said they would start playing it for every sporting event such as basketball, women’s soccer and men’s lacrosse.
“Pretty much whenever I was at a game the guy who did the PA would play it just for me to get everyone hype and it just became a ritual,” said Busch.
In baseball’s 2017 season, they played the famous song, and Busch just so happened to be there with a bunch of his high school friends and they encouraged him to continue the tradition.
The dance has become such a hit for the players, the coaches, fans and even the opposing team’s fans.
“We were a little disappointed when the song wasn’t played so we could see the dance during the very long and cold game, but I am sure we will have another opportunity to see it again sometime, maybe on TV one day,” said an Appalachian State fan following the game.
Busch tries to incorporate something new into every performance. Whether it be drenching himself with water bottles, pulling a ‘disappearing’ act with a blanket, or being a human jump rope, you never know what to expect on any given day.
The main act of the dance that he does is flipping his arms around his body and twisting them like a pretzel. Busch said he can flip his arm out of socket where his arms just become like noodles and he can move them all over. He said he can do it quite a bit before it starts to get sore, but he will experiment with new tricks as the season progresses.
The video posted by his Power 90.5 radio show, The Pregame, ended up going viral after the first win of the season. The video even reached former Catamount but now World Series Champion, Tyler White where he responded back “legend.”
“I think it’s pretty cool to have gone viral and hopefully it helps draw a crowd to the games. Even if it is to just see me dance, they have to support the Cats until it happens,” said Busch.
He thinks that adding a little spark here and there helps keep people entertained throughout the game.
Comparing himself and his moves to other styles of entertainment across different cultures, just to keep people interested and entertained:
“You have different cultures such as the Japanese, Korean, and Caribbean cultures that have drums, dancers, and all this other stuff going on so, I want to somehow bring in both of those. I try not to go over the top where I’m like super obnoxious but kind of keep it enjoyable with a little flare to everyone to enjoy,” said Busch.
Busch who even now has his own gif made of himself, thanks to Catamount Athletics, has two more seasons of cheering on the Cats and hopefully helping bring them to more victories as this season continues. He also wants everyone to remember to always be yourself and not care about if other people think you are crazy. Enjoy life and live it happily.
Winning or losing, if you hear Sandstorm coming from Hennon Stadium, The Icon WillyB is doing his famous dance. You can also help support the Cats and watch his performances live at any home game. The next home game will be against Tennessee at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, March 27.