Ian Duzik, left, and Taylor Duzik participate in Moffat County High School’s rodeo event in September 2010 at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. During the Colorado State High School Rodeo finals this Saturday and Sunday, Jed Moore, Colorado Northwestern Community College rodeo coach, will be on hand to recruit for CNCC’s new rodeo team, which launches in the fall.

Ian Duzik, left, and Taylor Duzik participate in Moffat County High School’s rodeo event in September 2010 at the Moffat County Fairgrounds. During the Colorado State High School Rodeo finals this Saturday and Sunday, Jed Moore, Colorado Northwestern Community College rodeo coach, will be on hand to recruit for CNCC’s new rodeo team, which launches in the fall.

CNCC to recruit for new rodeo team during state finals in Craig

Schedule of events for the Colorado State High School Rodeo finals:

Today:

(Time — event)

• 10 a.m. — First performance

• 8 p.m. — Second performance

Friday:

• 9 a.m. — Cutting

• 11 a.m. — Scholarship interviews

• 1 p.m. — Queen contest

Saturday:

• 10 a.m. — Third performance

• 8 p.m. — Fourth performance

Sunday:

• 10 a.m. — Championship round

• 2 p.m. — Awards dinner

— All performances take place at the Moffat County Fairgrounds, 640 E. Victory Way

Admission:

• 11 and older — $20*

• 10 and under — free

• Senior citizens — free

• Junior high rodeo members — free (w/ back number)

*Wristband, one-time charge for all performances

As rodeo athletes from all over the state compete in the Colorado State High School Rodeo finals this weekend, someone unique will be on the lookout from the audience.

Jed Moore, of Cheyenne, Wyo., will be on hand to scout athletes for Colorado Northwestern Community College’s newly formed rodeo team.

“Where we are located geographically and the community we come from, a rodeo team seemed pretty obvious,” Moore said. “Plus, rodeo athletes are hardworking and determined, so they will come to CNCC and help augment our academics as well.”

Moore said he has ridden bulls and been part of rodeo for 16 years and has helped teach classes for the past five years in Cheyenne, Cortez and Nebraska.

When a head rodeo coach position opened up on the CNCC-Rangely campus, he said he didn’t hesitate.

“I had been looking for a head coaching position for awhile, so I applied right away,” he said. “Thankfully, I can be part of this groundbreaking program.”

Moore has been in Rangely for almost a year managing Columbine Park, where the new team will practice, and recruiting hopeful rodeo stars.

The state finals, Moore said, will give him a chance to see numerous athletes.

“We have had athletes come for a visit already and we have 13 athletes on board,” he said. “We are hoping to have 20 overall and have athletes who perform well in academics and are willing to work to improve. We are not necessarily looking for national qualifiers, but kids who will commit to the program.”

A charter bus will shuttle interested athletes from Craig to Rangely on Friday morning. Moore said the visit would include tours of Columbine Park, the campus and classrooms as well as give the athletes a chance to look into various majors.

Classes officially start Aug. 22 and Moore said if all the paperwork is done, practice would begin that day as well.

Jay Clements, director of horsemanship at CNCC, will help the team, Moore said.

The team will compete in the Rocky Mountain region, which includes schools from Utah and southern Idaho.

The competition level, Moore said, could take some adjusting for the athletes.

“Anytime you move to a new association from the junior rodeos, the competition gets harder,” he said. “Some of the kids will be prepared and ready to excel while others won’t be right from the start.”

Janice Edwards, the Moffat County High School rodeo coach, said having a collegiate rodeo team close to Craig benefits everyone.

“Having a rodeo team will give the school something to draw students in that there has never been before,” she said. “They will be competing close to home and they can even take classes at the Craig campus.

“CNCC’s rodeo team gives kids a chance to continue doing the rodeo even after they graduate.”

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