LAS VEGAS – Cort Scheer has learned that dreams can come true.
Not only does he make a living riding bucking horses, Scheer competes against the best cowboys while trying to ride the best broncs. And over the past couple of weeks, he spent got to do so while on the grandest stage in ProRodeo, the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
Over 10 nights in Las Vegas, Scheer, 24, of Elsmere, Neb., put on quite a display of athleticism and humbleness, showcasing a brilliant smile after each ride, from his third-round buck-off of Frontier Rodeo’s Wild Bill to his ninth-round victory of Frontier’s Let ’Er Rip.
“Shoot, I’m doing great,” said Scheer, who placed in seven rounds and finished sixth in the NFR saddle bronc riding average with a cumulative total of 743.5 points on nine qualified rides; in all, he earned $70,048 while in Las Vegas and moved his annual earnings past $152,500, enough to finish fourth in the final world standings of 2010. “I’m pretty tickled with just being here, much less to have done so well.”
A third-round zero might’ve been a source of discomfort for some, but Scheer said it helped him in the long run.
“I knew at that point I had nothing to lose,” he said. “I didn’t have any pressure on me at that point, so I just went out there and went at them every time. You’ve got a shot to win $17,000 every night.”
He’s talking about the round-winning payout of $17,512, a sum he collected on the second to last night of the competition. Third place paid $10,451, and Scheer earned two of those. His finish in the average was with $11,016.
“Shoot, everything out here is just great,” said Scheer, who competed on rodeo teams at Garden City (Kan.) Community College, Montana State University and Oklahoma Panhandle State University. “Part of it’s just the atmosphere and being here with your buddies. It’s awesome.”
So was Scheer, who took in everything during his first qualification to the NFR.
“Probably the biggest ting is that you just have to relax,” he said. “You get tight, and you get the jitters, and it’s something you’ve got to work through. It’s just about going back to your basics.”
They are lessons he plans to take back to Las Vegas with him for many years to come.
“Yeah, I dang sure will do everything I can to come back to this, because this is why you rodeo all year long to get to the finals,” Scheer said. “I’m happier than heck to be here, and I plan to come back. I’d love to win that gold buckle, and the only way to win the world title is to be here.”