Cowboy Stories: Tuf Cooper

Tuf Cooper, 24, was born to rope calves. The son of eight-time World Champion Tie-Down Roper and hall of famer Roy “Super Looper” Cooper, Tuf became the youngest million-dollar cowboy when he crossed that milestone on Feb. 23, 2013, a few weeks after turning 23.

Cooper, of Decatur, Texas, is already a five-time NFR qualifier and earned world championships in tie-down roping in 2011 and 2012. Cooper captured the $100,000 Calgary Stampede tie-down championship in 2011. In 2010, he and brothers Clif and Clint became the first set of three brothers to qualify for the Wrangler NFR in tie-down roping in the same year.

Cooper says the thing he’s looking forward to the most about RFD-TV’s The American on March 2 at AT&T Stadium, is the chance to win it. Preparation will be key for the dedicated roper who added, “I will make sure I have everything 100 percent ready to go in order to go make one of the most important rodeo runs of my life.”

Cooper will be riding a horse he calls Rio, which he recently purchased from his brother-in-law, Trevor Brazile. Rio helped Brazile win the tie-down roping title in 2010. Among the things he looks forward to most about The American is competing alongside family members, who will be there in force. “There’s already five of us for sure—my sister, Shada, and her husband, Trevor, myself, my brother, Clif, and my cousin, Jim Ross. There could be a couple more if Clint Cooper (brother) and Stetson Vest (cousin) qualify.”

In his time away from the arena, Tuf says he’s a really big rodeo fan, so he spends any downtime following the sport. He thanks his sponsors for helping him down the road: Panhandle Slim Rock N Roll, Resistol Hats, Platinum Performance, Bloomer Trailers, Top Hand Rodeo Tour, Cactus Gear, Hiley GM, Schawlbe Trucks, P&P Trailer Sales, Trail Boss LQ, Heel O’Matic, MGM Grand, Home of the Champions; and is thankful he has Jesus on his side.

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