PublicationProRodeo Sports News - March 22, 2019
Bareback rider Jesse
Young cowboys thrive at PRCA and college levels
Pope won the average with 153 points on two head at the 2018 Permit Members of the Year Challenge in Las Vegas. William Kierce photo
BY MATT NABER U nlike other professional sports, ProRodeo athletes can compete in college while working on their pro careers. It’s not unheard of for cowboys at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo to also have final exams on their
mind, but seeing a cowboy succeed on both the professional and national college standings at the same time is pretty rare. Although the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association’s season isn’t complete and the PRCA’s season continues to pick up steam, a handful of cowboys are listed near the top of the standings with both associations, and they talked to ProRodeo Sports News about how they’re making it happen.
TEGAN SMITH Event: Saddle Bronc Riding Hometown: Winterset, Iowa Born: May 23, 1998 School: Clarendon (Texas) College
How do college rodeo and ProRodeo impact each other? Smith: College rodeo has all your friends there and it’s a fun time and more laid back. But then at a ProRodeo, you have all the big dogs and everyone you looked up to. Competing at college rodeos helps prepare me for ProRodeos. How do you balance the schedules? Smith: You’ve got to have a really good coach who knows your schedule and understands it and can help you with it so you’re not missing a college rodeo but can also enter a ProRodeo. What’s your major and what do you plan on doing with it? Smith: I’m in welding, so you work at your own pace. Last year, I worked hard in class and knocked out all my tests, and then this year I had more leeway to go rodeo.
Success: Ranked fifth in the college standings and fifth in the PRCA | Resistol Rookie Standings as of March 19 What’s it like competing in college rodeo and with the PRCA at the same time?
Smith: Scheduling can be hard. You have to go to college rodeos, so you hit a few pro rodeos that same weekend. At my school we have really good practice horses, and if things started to go south I could go back to school and figure it out and keep going.
ProRodeo Sports News 3/22/2019
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