Common Sense Solution to WNFR Quandary

This is a rarity—A gripe and a solution.

The Cowboy Channel Plus has taken rodeo to a whole new level. Maybe it’s time for the NFR to be elevated also. I feel that the following line of reasoning behooves the PRCA to up their game.

The Bear Creek Brainwave

About Round 7 or 8, my old buddy from the Dry Deuce Ranch on Bear Creek south of Piapot, Saskatchewan, phoned me. He said his wife had told him she didn’t want to watch the NFR anymore because it’s so ‘predictable.’ (You know who will be gifted and who will be docked.) That got him thinking, and he came up with a solution that would take the NFR into this century. (It’s been the same way since 1959.)

The Comparisons

He said, “The National Hockey League wouldn’t play a seven-game series for the Stanley Cup using the same officials night after night.”

Then he pointed out, “Major League Baseball doesn’t play the World Series with the same guy standing behind the plate calling balls and strikes for seven games.” (Umpire’s strike zones vary in size and location.)

He said, “The PRCA approves close to 30 rodeos a weekend in July and August. To do that they must have nearly 100 approved judges.” Then he asked, “Are they telling me that there’s only a handful that are good enough to determine the champions?” Yet, the PRCA uses the same judges (with their likes or dislikes) for ten consecutive rounds at the National Finals Rodeo.

The Solution

He suggested using three sets of four-man crews for the riding events. ‘Crew A’ does rounds 1, 4 and 7. ‘Crew B’ judges rounds 2, 5 and 8. ‘Crew C’ works rounds 3, 6 and 9.

The Incentive

At the end of Round 9, the roughstock contestants get to vote for the All-Star Judges. You could end up with one judge from Crew ‘A’, another from Crew ‘B’ and two from Crew ‘C’ or any other combination. The All-Stars get the distinct honour of judging Round 10 (another payday for them.)

Another Illustration

I ran this by another rancher friend (different coulee). He added, “Throw the National Football League into it, too. Some refs call more pass interference penalties than others; some are heavy on the roughing the passer calls. But throughout the season, regardless of their tolerance level, the key is to be consistent (each team equal) to be selected to work the playoffs and come playoff time, they’re trying to earn the right to officiate the Super Bowl game.”  

That friends, is how to eliminate the ‘predictable’ and keep the television ratings climbing.



9 thoughts on “Common Sense Solution to WNFR Quandary

  1. I think this would be a good idea as the judging is definitely not fair. It doesn’t take long to see who the judges want to win an event. Sometimes the right guy wins but not by 3 or 4 points.This makes quite a big difference in the average.They don’t show the flagman very often but think they can make quit a difference when it comes down to 10ths of a second.This is just my opinion and don’t think it will change any thing unless enough people complain.

  2. I agree!!! I think that this is a wonderful idea. My wife & I have been attending & watching the NFR for decades now & we also can see that without a doubt that there are judges that have favorites especially in the way the roughstock events are scored. Rotating the judges in the rounds & then letting cowboys select the judges for the 10th round seems more than fair to me. I know that we aren’t alone in hollering or booing the way the judges score some cowboys over others & we also feel that they have their own favorites for one reason or another & it shows in their scoring, boy did we want to protest so many times.

  3. That would be way more fair than it is now. Been going since 1987 and that’s my biggest beef is the judging. Good if your on the receiving end but if your not it’s not much fun.

  4. That would be a great idea’ we’ve all watched the judges scores and wonder how you can have 4 judges and there’s always one judge way out of wack like he’s watching a different ride than the rest of the judges

  5. This topic has been talked about for years. The problem lies in the judges 1 couldn’t comp the cost for the week on 3 performance pay, 2 the prca won’t take the time to pay 12 difference judges,
    I personally think it’s a great idea..

  6. That is the best idea I have heard in a long time. The judging does not seem very fair anymore.
    I agree that this idea should be tried and I am sure it will work well and make things much fairer. The Calgary Stampede could sure use something like this.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *