Alberta-born and raised Guy Smith, who enjoyed a decade-long and popular tenure as the rodeo coach of Western Oklahoma State College in Altus, Okla., recently announced his retirement.
Well-known, well respected and trusted with the training, safety and well-being of countless college students from both sides of the border, Smith took the WOSC team to 10 national college finals.
“My hardest working and most driven students almost every year came from Canada,” said Smith in a recent interview. “They came from every province in the West, and Ontario.”
WOSC offers full roll rodeo scholarships and have graduated Canadians such as Stephen Culling, the 2016 PRCA Rookie of the Year and Alberta’s Carla Olstad.
Smith coached at least “52 Canadians,” he said. “But without my rosters I think I’m missing a couple. Three students have made the WNFR and if you include bullfighters it becomes five,” he said. “I could relate to the Canadian kids better because I understood what it was like for them moving that far away from home and what they had been through to get here.”
In a written release, Smith stated, “I want to thank each and every student athlete I have been blessed to coach. Thank you to each family that entrusted your child to us and I hope I at least helped them a little. My family, I thank you for understanding why I ate supper after you had already finished and why I missed that ball game or stock show. I sure enjoyed coaching the students.”
Smith and his family will remain in Altus. “Since the day I resigned there have been kids out to practice at our house,” said Smith, “and I don’t see that stopping anytime soon.”