Reigning college saddle bronc champion Riggin Smith ready for the opportunity RFD-TV’s The American presents


Riggin Smith is the reigning college saddle bronc riding champion and believes he’s doing exactly what he was put here to do, and that’s rodeo.

“I just really like riding bucking horses,” Smith said, “so when I get an opportunity like this, I just thank God for putting me in this deal.”

Smith finished 5th out of 6 qualifiers at the semi-finals of RFD-TV’s The American with scores of 83.75 and 76.25.

Smith enters RFD-TV’s The American as the reigning college national champion, where he is coached by three-time NFR saddle bronc rider Bret Franks at Clarendon College.

“I don’t want to say it is something we focus on there, but it is kind of what our favorite deals we do at the college is bucking horses,” former Clarendon College bronc rider and current No. 1 Wyatt Casper said.

The young cowboy said having a coach who specializes in the same discipline as him has been very helpful to his career.

“Lotta guys can you teach the fundamentals but he’s really good at like your mind and how you approach something,” Smith said, “he just tells you to make pretty much everyone as important as possible so when you do a go to a place like this (The American).”


Smith said he is not intimidated by the bright lights and big names at AT&T Stadium.

“I just wanna do as good as I can on all of ‘em, if I do as good as I can on every one of ‘em, stuff will happen,” he said.

On days of competition, Smith admits he is a little superstitious. When he arrives at the arena doesn’t really matter but he does not eat chicken on days he competes. He’ll be the first to tell you, there’s not much rhyme or reason behind that.

“Someone told me that one time,” he said with a laugh.

He also drinks a Bang energy right when the bareback riding starts. After he drinks the Bang, he’s golden, he says.

“I gotta drink it pretty fast,” he said. “Usually energy drinks wire me up real bad, that one kind of mellows me, helps me focus.”

Anything else Riggin Smith wants people to know about him?

“People tell me to cut my hair all of the time.”

However, he has no plans of trimming his long hair down anytime soon but when he does, he will probably donate it to Locks of Love at Casper’s request.

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