(Story courtesy of Odessa College)
After ten collegiate rodeos, held from September until last weekend, the Odessa College Men's Rodeo team has qualified for the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Finals to be held June 10-17, 2018 in Casper, Wyoming. The men's team at the 2018 finals will be comprised of the top six ranked Odessa College cowboys in the 17 College/Universities NIRA Southwest Region. Tarleton State University men won the Southwest title with 3,885 points. Odessa College barely edged out Western Texas College for the second position with 3,405 to the 3,380 points earned by WTC. Only the top two teams are allowed to advance from each region to the NIRA finals. In each region, the top two teams and the top three individuals per event are allowed to advance to nationals.
The Wrangler men last qualified a team for the NIRA Finals during the 2012 season. Prior to the 2012 season, one must go back to the 1989 season to locate a year in which Odessa College qualified a rodeo team for the intercollegiate rodeo championships.
Representing the Wranglers in Casper, Wyoming on the Men's team will be:
BoDell Jessen SO Altamont, UT Finish 3rd in the SW Region in Bareback in 2018. BoDell qualified in both the bareback and the Bulls during the 2017 national finals, Jessen finished 12th in the Nation in 2017 in the bull riding.
Wyatt Johnson SO Payson, UT Finished 4th in the SW Region in Bareback in 2018. Won the bareback event in 3 collegiate rodeos in 2018. Qualified for the American Rodeo in Dallas with the opportunity to win a million dollars. Finished 4th in the American Rodeo Semi Finals. Wyatt had the highest bareback riding scores (85 on one head, 167 on two head) in the Southwest Region during the 2017-18 intercollegiate season.
Austin Allred SO Cleveland, UT Finished 5th in the SW Region in the bull riding in 2018. Austin Won the first rodeo of the year at ENMU and fought through injuries this spring to secure a spot at the CNFR.
Kyler Dick FR Oakley, UT Finished 4th in the SW Region in Steer Wrestling in 2018. Dick finished the season strong placing at three of the last four rodeos.
Ty Allred SO Tooele, UT Finished 8th in the SW Region in Steer Wrestling in 2018. Allred won the final rodeo of the year to secure the teams and his CNFR berth.
Brock Powell SO Aragon, New Mexico Finished 10th in the SW Region in Steer Wrestling in 2018. Powell earned the ENMU steer wrestling championship.
On the Women's side of the Odessa College Rodeo team, Maddie Dickens of Loveland, Colorado has qualified for two events at the NIRA National Rodeo. Maddie was the All-Around Women's champion in both the Southwest Region and the Western Junior College Athletic Conference, scoring more point in two or more events than any other contestant. Maddie was the only Wrangler in 2018 to win a year end event championship, capturing the Southwest Region Barrel title and also finishing 8th in the goat tying.
The Odessa College Women's Rodeo team scored 1,363 points to finish 4th place in the Southwest Region. This point total and the 4th place finish are the highest total and finish for the women's team in the history of Odessa College Rodeo Team. Congratulations to all the team members from the OC women's rodeo team that contributed points to this awesome finish for the women's team.
High praise is indeed warranted for Head Rodeo Coach CJ Aragon and the entire rodeo squad for their dedicated performance during the 2017-18 rodeo season. Best of luck at nationals.