Undaunted, a California-based group is putting together teams in six cities (franchise cost: $75,000) from K.C. to L.A. with the intention of starting competition next March. Annual operating costs are estimated at $350,000 to $500,000 per team. Each team will have 13 competitors (10 men, three women) with a minimum salary of $6,000 each for a six-month season.
But there are problems. It is generally not satisfactory, for example, to convert sports based on individual prowess into team efforts. And when you talk of individuals, cowboys top the list. They are just not good at details, like showing up in the right city on the right night. Also, the stock used in rodeos is highly inconsistent. Some broncs and bulls buck, others don't, and even an extraordinary cowboy can't win if he draws a lackadaisical critter. These variables would work against equitable team competition.
Still, exhibiting a gambling, frontier spirit, Michael Shapiro, one of the investors, says, "We did not want to create another rodeo league to see it die." Which is what every promoter says who has ever sent an idea out of the chute.