ENMU cowboy tough enough for ESPN event

By Thomas Garcia, PNT Staff Reporter

An Eastern New Mexico University Rodeo student, might not have won the Fox Sports Network’s 2008 Toughest Cowboy contest, but he’s still pretty tough.

Jared Green made it to the semifinal rounds of the contest in Nashville, before being eliminated by Shane Proctor, of Grand Coulee, Wash., who won the event in February.

Green is no stranger to rodeos, but this first time competing in an event like this. During the competition 12 riders competed each night in the three events of bareback riding, saddle bronc riding and bull riding.

Green was one of the 12 cowboys selected out of a field of 30 riders in the November tryouts at Mesquite, Texas. The riders were competing for the Iron Glove Trophy and the deed to a brand new ranch, just outside of Pueblo, Colo., courtesy of event sponsor Jagermeister.

“I had been riding in all three events since high school, so I figured why not make some money doing what I love,” Green said.

“Competing in the Toughest Cowboy competition was great and I plan on trying out for it again next year.” Green said. “Rodeo is year-round and never seems to slow down. There is always more that you could win in a year, but this has been a good year.”

Even though he collected between $15,000 and $16,000 from the Toughest Cowboy competition, Green says that rodeo is no way to get rich fast.

“If you do well at an event you can get a nice chunk of change,” Green said. “ After it is all said an done you have to factor in the cost of going to the events, lodging and sometimes medical bills.”

Green, is currently competing on the collegiate level as a member of the ENMU men’s rodeo team. At his last event in Stephenville, Texas, he qualified for the College National Finals Rodeo, held at Casper, Wyo., despite having a broken arm.

“I was competing in Snyder, Texas, about three weeks ago when I broke my hand,” Green said. “My horse was bucking and got sucked into the wall, threw me off in the wall and when I came-to my arm was hurting. That happened on a Friday and I still had to ride Saturday so I just taped it up and continued to ride.

Green has always had the support of his family when it came to his rodeo life. His father Jimmy Green had the biggest influence on his career, Green said.

“Dad raised my brother James and I to be tough and be champions,” Green said. “When we got bucked off we were told to get back on and do better.”

Green, thanks his mother, Sidney Green, who was also supportive throughout all of his rodeo years.

“My brother and I were a living nightmare for my mom,” Green said. “We probably gave her one or two gray hairs growing up.”

Green’s start in rodeo came as early as age 3, when he was competing in junior rodeos in Socorro, riding sheep.

“Rodeo is just something that I was raised on,” Green said, “It was never a choice that I made to start up being a cowboy competing in rodeos, it was like second nature.”

Despite the many injuries and long hours of competition Green has no regrets with how rodeo has changed his life. In fact rodeo has been more to Green then just a way to pass time, win money and collect injuries. It has given him the opportunity to meet new people, make new friends and most importantly, get a college education.

“Rodeo has been my open door,” Green said, “My family could not afford to pay for four years of college tuition, so rodeo has helped me out in many ways.”

Green expects to graduate in December with a degree in general agriculture.

Fast Facts

• The 2008 Fox Sports Network’s Toughest Cowboy competition aired from December-February on FSN networks.

• Jared Green was eliminated by Shane Proctor (2008 Toughest Cowboy winner) in Nashville, Tenn., in the second match of the playoffs.

• Jared Green has had a total of six injuries, two right shoulder surgeries, broken left hand, torn ligament in left knee, and he has broken both ankles.

• Visit www.toughestcowboy.com for information, results and re-airing schedule for the second season of the Toughest Cowboy Competition featuring Jared Green.