Alpine, TX – This is a talented team. In fact, it’s the most talented team that CJ Aragon has ever coached. They’re also now the most experienced group Coach Aragon has entered a season with. After last year’s success, that’s definitely not an understatement
With the start of the 2021-2022 season on Sept. 16th at Eastern New Mexico University, the Sul Ross Rodeo Team starts their journey to live up to the expectations. Those expectations were set after a successful campaign last year that was highlighted by Tristen Hutchings claiming the title for Bull Riding at the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyo.
Notable students on 21-22 Team
- Blake Bentley (Junior) – Transfer from Weatherford College & Roped at the 2021 CNFR with Lane Cooper
- Kirby Blankenship (Senior) – CNFR Qualifier in the Team Roping
- Lane Cooper (Senior)- 2021 CNFR Qualifier in the Team Roping—Roped with Blake Bentley
- Will Eddleman (Junior) -Transfer from Cisco College & Won 3rdin the Nation in the Team Roping at the 2021 CNFR with Garret Jacobs
- McKenzie Frizzell (Grad Student) – Transfer from NMSU & 2-time CNFR contestant in the Breakaway Roping
- McKenna Hickson (Junior) – Transfer from Weatherford College & Currently ranked 22ndin the world in the Breakaway Roping
- Timmi Hutchings (Grad Student) – 2020 CNFR qualifier in the Goat Tying
- Tristen Hutchings (Senior) – 2021 National Champion Bull Rider
- Morgan Kessler (Senior) – 2021 Scholar All-American
- Hadley Kibbe (Grad Student) – 2021 Scholar All-American
- Nichole Lake (Grad Student) – CNFR Qualifier in the Breakaway Roping, 2021 Scholar All-American
- Brandon Lansford (Senior) – 2018 Junior NFR World Champion Saddle Bronc Rider
- Hannah Martin (Senior) – 2020 CNFR qualifier in the Breakaway Roping
- Kade Smith (Junior) – CNFR Qualifier in the Team Roping
The experience comes from the bevy of upperclassmen and particularly the presence of those graduate students that gives this talented group that extra dose of veteran swagger. They know expectations are high and have been working hard all off season to get ready to answer the challenge. It’s going to be a long haul in the competitive Southwest Region with five rodeos in the fall and five in the spring with the possibility of an invitational event, and Coach Aragon has been impressed and pleased with all of the time his team has put in to live up to what it means to compete for Sul Ross.
Sul Ross rodeo team members will return to Alpine from Portales and will have to put in long hours next week, preparing the arena and taking care of the myriad details to produce the SRSU rodeo the following weekend, set for September 23rd – 25th. While it’s plenty of work, Coach C. J. Aragon and his crew are up to task as another rodeo season gets underway.