Texas Tech University's Rodeo Association is hosting its 53rd annual National Intercollegiate Rodeo, scheduled for October 24th - 26th at the South Plains Fairgrounds Livestock Pavilion. The event is the largest intercollegiate rodeo in the United States. More than 450 contestants from 15 colleges and universities throughout the region will be participating.
"We plan on being extremely competitive as hosts of our annual rodeo," said Chris Guay, Texas Tech rodeo coach and instructor of animal science. "We have some outstanding student rodeo athletes this year. I would encourage everyone to come out for some great rodeo action."
Events begin at 7:30 p.m. nightly. Thursday (October 24th) is university night, with Texas Tech students admitted for half price with a valid student ID. Ticket prices are $8 for Thursday and Friday, and $10 on Saturday. Tickets are available through the Texas Tech Rodeo Office at (806) 742-2455.
A Little Buckaroos Play Rodeo will be offered Saturday afternoon, at approximately 2:15 p.m., immediately following Cowboy Church. Events may include a calf scramble, roping contest, goat relay, stick horse barrel race and possibly, horse back rides. The entry fee is $1 per child (under 12) if an adult purchases a Saturday night ticket to the Texas Tech Rodeo; otherwise, the entry is $4 per child.
Guay says one of this year's most high profile attractions is Wes Stevenson, a junior agricultural communications major from Kaufman. Stevenson is a Southwest Region National Intercollegiate Champion Bareback bronc rider, who has been a leader for the Texas Tech men's rodeo team over the past couple of years.
Stevenson currently is second in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association World Bareback riding standings. He is making his first bid for a world championship at the PRCA National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, December 6th - 15th.
Student organizations are encouraged to participate in a calf-dressing contest, which is open each evening to three-member teams. Participation is limited to the first 24 organizations that sign up. The contest consists of teams competing to dress a calf in their organization's t-shirt. The organization with the fastest time will be presented with t-shirts.
Regular rodeo events will include bull riding, bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, calf roping, team roping, barrel racing, goat tying, break-away roping and steer wrestling. Awards for these events will be presented immediately following the finals of each event on Saturday evening.
Rodeo athletes from 15 other universities and colleges will compete, including: South Plains College, Angelo State University, Sul Ross State University, Vernon Regional College, Tarleton State University, West Texas A&M University, Frank Phillips College, Howard College, Cisco Junior College, Odessa College, Weatherford College, Western Texas College, Mesa Technical College, Eastern New Mexico College, and New Mexico Junior College.
Persons with disabilities and who require assistance should notify the rodeo office two days prior to the event they wish to attend. For more information contact the Texas Tech Rodeo Association, at (806) 742-2455.