SAN ANTONIO – Thousands of people are expected to fill the AT&T Center Saturday to cheer on their favorite cowboys, cowgirls and animal athletes for the final weekend of the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo.
Some may agree that in the rodeo arena the real heroes are the bull fighters who come face-to-face with the fierce bulls. They help protect the lives of some of the most courageous cowboys like Roscoe Jarboe that eventually have to get off the bull.
“If it wasn’t for bull fighters, we wouldn’t do it,” Jarboe said. Jarboe is a cowboy from Idaho. “The shoots are kind of a most dangerous spot for us to be with the bucking bull. A lot of bulls lay down or flip backwards or roll or just buck in there.”
He anticipates a solid 8-second ride with a bull that can jump high and kick strong and hopes for a safe landing once that buzzer goes off.
“The end of our rope is called the tail," Jarboe said. "We’re supposed to pull that tail and it allows you to free your hand a little easier to get off and hopefully land on your feet.”
He says 90 points could put him in the lead on the scoreboard and in the stands. The loudest cheers are also for Texas cowboys like Billy Bob Brown.
Brown is a heeler in team roping, competing in the finals Saturday evening at the AT&T Center.
“It’s just like a job,' Brown said. "It’s just something you have to do every day, and if you’re not getting better, somebody else is. There (are) a lot of great ropers nowadays and it’s really tough.”
Brown is from Carbon, Texas and won his first buckle roping a dummy when he was one-year-old. His goal for Saturday night is for his time to be as good as last Saturday’s in the preliminaries.
“4.1 seconds - I got a really good start," Brown said. “I was (really) close to the steer and it wasn’t that difficult. The steer was awesome and it made for a good run.”
For both of these cowboys, competing in the San Antonio Rodeo is a rush of adrenaline they hope to continue experiencing for years to come.
The rodeo finals will close out with the top cowboys and cowgirls competing in various events, beginning at 7 p.m. at the AT&T Center followed by KC and the Sunshine Band. For rodeo results, click here.
Families will be able to enjoy the stock show and carnival grounds on Sunday to support an event that has raised millions of dollars for student scholarships.