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Nelsen named rodeo coach for Northeast Community College

by Matt Naber | Aug 09, 2019

PRCA Media Coordinator

Northeast (Neb.) Community College really will have its first rodeo.

The rodeo team from Norfolk, Neb., begins its first season of college rodeo competition in the Great Plains Region with PRCA steer wrestler and tie-down roper Fenton Nelsen as head coach. 

Nelsen, 24, was the assistant rodeo coach at Missouri Valley College in Marshall, Mo., and a rodeo clinician for young contestants in timed events.

“It’s pretty intimidating really, facing everyone with an established program and that has everything put together, and here I am scrambling six days before kids arrive to get cattle set up,” Nelsen said. “It’s been a cool adventure so far, and I think it’s great to get a chance to create something of my own and something different. I’m not picking up where someone left off, I get to put my name on this and that’s pretty cool.” 

Nelsen earned his bachelor’s degree in agribusiness from Missouri Valley College while on the rodeo team. The Iowa Falls, Iowa, cowboy was a four-time College National Finals Rodeo qualifier in steer wrestling and tie-down roping.

The new coach sees his age as an advantage.

“I’m fresh out of college rodeo and I know it just as good as anyone – how to work it and do it correctly and how it works currently,” Nelsen said.

On the ProRodeo level, Nelsen was the 2017 Great Lakes Circuit Steer Wrestling Champion and won the circuit’s all-around title. 

Before going pro in 2016, Nelsen was a four-time national qualifier in the National High School Finals Rodeo and was the reserve National High School Rodeo Champion in steer wrestling. In Iowa, he was a three-time Iowa High School Rodeo State Champion and was named all-around cowboy.

Nelsen plans to pick up the pace with his ProRodeo competition once his college rodeo program is established. 

“I slowed up a little bit this year to focus on getting the program started,” Nelsen said, “but next year once I feel comfortable about leaving a bit longer, I’ll branch out and go a bit harder.”


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