ProRodeo Sports News - Sept. 4, 2020
DIRECTOR’S CUT SCOTT KANIEWSKI
Crunching the numbers for season’s final month W ith the certainty that the 2020Wrangler National Finals Rodeo is going to happen, everyone can take a deep breath and spend the final month glued to the PRCA | RAMWorld Standings. The race to the Finals is always fun to watch over the final With as many team ropers as there are going in the PRCA, there’s plenty of cash to go around. That means that No. 20 Kaleb Driggers isn’t out of it despite being about $9,000 behind No. 15 Matt Sherwood. Coleman Proctor (No. 19), Cory Kidd V (18), Brenten Hall (17) and Clay Ullery (16) also can set their sights higher. With $37,832 earned, Hall can quickly go from 17th to top 10, where Kolton Schmidt is sitting with $44,115.
30 days of the regular season. Fun if you’re a fan – not necessarily if you’re a competitor on the bubble for the last of 15 spots in an event. And this year’s competition is going to be among the tightest we’ve seen in ProRodeo history. With the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down rodeo for two months and limiting the number of rodeos held the last four months, a number of spots remain up for grabs. In bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping heeling and bull riding, the 15th and 16th spots are separated by less than $1,000, including heeler Trey Yates who trails Chase Tryan by $6. While the top 10 bareback riders have broken $50,000 this season, there’s a separation of about $8,000 between 13th and 18th. With $41,815 earned, Ty Breuer has to feel pretty comfortable in 11th place. But No. 12 Jake Brown is $6,000 ahead of No. 17 Taylor Broussard. And don’t forget the Yellowstone Riggin Rally on Sept. 7 is offering a $30,000 payout to bareback riders, including $10,000 to the winner. That kind of money keeps No. 23 Paden Hurst – with $22,865 – in the mix. Jump to steer wrestling and the top nine should feel safe. But No. 10 Bridger Anderson, with $35,203 earned, might be glancing over his shoulder. No. 19 Ty Erickson, the defending world champion, is barely more than $8,000 behind Anderson, but less than $5,000 behind No. 15 Clayton Hass.
Heeling is similar. Just $7,084 separates No. 14WesleyThorp – the defending world champion – fromNo. 19 Ryan Motes. The top seven saddle bronc riders have all made more than $50,000, the top five more than $70,000. But Dawson Hay and Taos Muncy, 14th and 15th, respectively, are only a few thousand dollars away from being on the outside looking in. Seven guys are battling for two spots. Tie-down roping has at least 10 cowboys battling for five spots. Tyler Milligan finished August in 10th with $44,728. At 20th, Blane Cox is about $10,000 behind, but $6,000 away from cracking the Top 15. And then there’s bull riding. With ground money in play and the Xtreme Bull Riding Tour Finale in Nephi, Utah, with a total payout of $60,000, a $10,000 deficit is erasable. That would mean Jeston Mead in 24th in the standings with $33,411 is in the mix. Rugar Piva is 15th with $43,795. FromNo. 11 Ty Wallace to No. 18 Dallee Mason, a difference of about $6,000 separates seven bull riders battling for five spots. The heartbreak is going to happen. (Kind of fits with 2020, doesn’t it?) But there will be plenty of joy too, for each event’s lucky 15 that end up dancing for 10 days at theWrangler NFR.
Scott Kaniewski is the Media Director at the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. He previously served more than two years as the editor of ProRodeo Sports News. He has nearly two decades of experience in sports journalism, with the last few being consumed by ProRodeo.
ProRodeo Sports News 9/4/2020
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