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PBR and NHSRA Announce Broad Partnership in High School Rodeo

By: Andrew Giangola
February 12, 2018

Jess Lockwood competes at a 2016 high school rodeo in Montana. Photo: Andy Watson / BullStockMedia.com.

Expanding Beyond Bull Riding, PBR Wants to Grow High School Rodeo into a Global Media Property

PUEBLO, Colo. (February 12, 2018) – Professional Bull Riders (PBR) and National High School Rodeo Association (NHSRA) today announced a partnership to grow high school rodeo through media, marketing, and programs for youth.

The extensive, multi-faceted partnership, which signals PBR’s further expansion into western sports beyond bull riding, includes global TV and digital rights representation for U.S. and international coverage of high school rodeo, and PBR sponsorship of NHSRA to market and support rodeo youth development programs globally.

“The NHSRA is proud to welcome PBR as a partner of high school rodeo,” said NHSRA Executive Director James Higginbotham. “PBR’s investment in the NHSRA will benefit our student athletes by increasing exposure for our association through marketing the rights to NHSRA’s media. We look forward to a rewarding partnership for years to come.”

PBR will focus on expanding NHRSA as both a TV and streaming product and building the profiles of the sport’s student-athletes.

“This is a significant opportunity to grow high school rodeo as a global media property by leveraging Endeavor’s reach, shining a light on compelling NHSRA student-athletes around the world, and raising awareness of a sport every young athlete should consider,” said Sean Gleason, CEO, PBR, a division of Endeavor, a leading global sports, entertainment and fashion company. “The young men and women who compete in junior high and high school rodeo are the future of the cowboy, keeping alive an important part of our heritage yet with virtually no traditional media coverage. We intend to change that by telling rich and compelling stories in addition to covering the events with their talents on full display.”

More than 12,000 students, eligible to win $1.8 million in annual academic and competition-based scholarships, participate in 1,800 NHSRA events held annually in 43 states as well as Australia, Canada and Mexico. PBR will stream to fans select NHSRA events over RidePass, its new 24/7 digital streaming service debuting soon.

PBR will bolster a feeder system that already produces many of its biggest stars, who often qualify for the NJHFR (National Junior High Finals Rodeo) or NHSFR (National High School Finals Rodeo). These former rodeo student-athletes include 2017 World Champion Jess Lockwood; 2016 World Champion Cooper Davis; 2013/2015 World Champion J.B. Mauney; 2014/2015 CPRA (Canadian Professional Rodeo Association) Champion Dakota Buttar; 2012 PRCA Champion Cody Teel; Gage Gay; Derek Kolbaba; Brennon Eldred; Cody Campbell; Matt Triplett; Chase Robbins; and Keyshawn Whitehorse.

Among the NHSRA events that PBR’s RidePass digital network will cover are the NHSRA High School Finals and the NHSRA Junior High Finals. The NHSRA High School Finals, scheduled for July 15-21 in Rock Springs, WY, is the world’s largest rodeo in terms of athletes (more than 1,600) and stock, while the NHSRA Junior High Finals, set for June 24-30 in Huron, SD, is the second largest rodeo in the world with more than 1,100 athletes competing.

About The National High School Rodeo Association
The National High School Rodeo Association was founded in 1949 and today is the largest youth western equine association in the world. The mission of the NHSRA has existed first and foremost to promote and support education and to develop the essential attributes of leadership, dedication, commitment and responsibility in high school students. While preserving the western heritage, the NHSRA teaches its members to maintain the highest regard for each other and their livestock. The NHSRA’s mission does not stop on the high school level, as the Association also strives to impart to its members the advantage of higher education and the desire to never stop learning. The NHSRA supports their dreams by annually awarding more than $800,000.00 in scholarships at the national level, and $1.8 million in scholarship cumulatively on the international level. These scholarships are awarded at over 1,800 rodeos a year in 43 States, 5 Canadian provinces, Australia and Mexico. With over 70 Years of history behind the NHSRA and continued growth and success, the organization is preserving the past and preparing for a successful future.
About the PBR (Professional Bull Riders)
The world’s premier bull riding organization began as a dream of 20 bull riders 25 years ago and now operates in five countries. On its elite tour, the organization features the top 35 bull riders in the world and the top bulls in the business. The televised 25th PBR: Unleash The Beast, along with the PBR Real Time Pain Relief Velocity Tour (RVT), the PBR Touring Pro Division (TPD) and the PBR’s international circuits in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico have paid nearly $184 million in earnings to its athletes. Thirty bull riders have earned more than $1 million, including two-time PBR World Champion J.B. Mauney who is the top-earning athlete in Western sports history with more than $7.2 million in career earnings. PBR is part of the Endeavor (formerly WME | IMG) network. For more information on the PBR, go to PBR.com, or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/PBR, Instagram at Instagram.com/PBR, and YouTube at YouTube.com/PBR.