Meet the Member Bill Sharber

by Rodeo News

story by Lindsay Humphrey

After high school graduation, Bill Sharber headed to the oilfield and he’s been there ever since. Graduation brought more than just a full-time job for this Konawa, Oklahoma, native. “I always wanted to rodeo in high school, but my parents wouldn’t let me. I mostly wanted to rope, and they were afraid I would cut my fingers off,” said the NSPRA executive committee member. Bill’s parents did, however, let him show a lot of cattle and they always had horses to ride around the house. Livestock shows kept Bill busy for the first 18 years of his life, but he’s spent the last 40 roping until his heart’s content.
He first started in the calf roping but later Bill learned how to team rope. Back then the number system of present-day team roping jackpots didn’t exist. Everything was ranked either “A” or “B” with the latter being for the lower numbered ropers. That’s where Bill could be found during his time off, but he quickly improved enough to be competitive at the tougher jackpots and open rodeos. “I went to some IRA rodeos and eventually filled my PRCA permit. I went to a lot of rodeos in the Fort Worth Stockyards. I even went to Cheyenne a couple of times over the years.” Bill still competes at multiple rodeos every year, but his main focus is on the growth of the NSPRA and helping young ropers now.
“In 2004 I went to every NSPRA rodeo they had plus Canada. I won the world title in the calf roping and the all-around.” Bill also won the 40-49 calf roping at the Canadian finals that year. It’s safe to say Bill has rodeoed in a large majority of the western and central states in the U.S. “The NSPRA is just a good family deal. A lot of good people, pretty laid back and we all have a good time.” Even though the NSPRA caters to the older rodeo competitor, Bill warns people against underestimating the competition. “You’d be surprised. There are people from 40 all the way up to 80 still competing. The age groups break it down enough for the calf ropers to remain competitive and then after 68 you can start to breakaway if you don’t want to tie anymore.”
Even though Bill prefers calf roping over team roping, he heads more than anything else. “We have 100 head of steers and only about 30 calves at the house. I team rope more than rope calves, but that keeps me in shape for the tie down.” His parent’s fears almost became a reality a few years ago. “We were going to the world series at Vegas three years ago and I got my hand under the dally and broke it. I roped in Vegas anyway. Then I came back home and had to get a plate put in my hand.” Surgery and a slightly stiffer hand haven’t been much of a setback for Bill. He’s just as handy and busy as ever.
BS Arena keeps Bill on his toes year-round with team and calf roping jackpots on a regular basis. “We have an indoor and outdoor roping pen at the house. Most Thursday nights we have a team roping jackpot and we’ll do anything from an eight-point to a 12-point.” People often ask why Bill keeps up this crazy lifestyle and his answer always involves the ropers who helped him when he first started out. “The guys like Randy Rice and Gary Baugh set an example and I want to continue to help kids or anyone that wants to rope.” And when Bill isn’t off roping or at the lake, he’ll put on events over the weekend also. The BS Arena will be the location of multiple NSPRA events in 2021. That’s part of Bill’s overall plan to help grow the NSPRA membership. “We’re trying to promote the NSPRA down here. The finals will be in Buckeye, Arizona, in October, which is when all the team roping jackpots start up out there. We’re hoping that will attract more people.”

                © Rodeo Life Media Corporation | All Rights Reserved • Laramie, Wyoming • 307.761.9053

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