Wyatt Muggli looks and sounds more like an old veteran than a 25-year-old rookie from southeast Oklahoma. It could be all those years he’s already been rodeoing, from high school and college through the amateur ranks. Regardless, the graduate student emerged from the big PRCA Fourth run still leading the Resistol Rookie Heading standings, and stretched his mile-long lead in the rookie all-around race.

First things first. What about that unique name?

“My dad’s family was from Germany and I believe the first immigrant here changed the spelling from Mukkli,” he said. “Anyway, it’s pronounced ‘ugly’ with an ‘m’ in front.”

He’s a busy guy, anticipating an October 2 wedding to barrel-horse trainer Lindsey McLeod and working on a master’s degree at Texas A&M University-Commerce. It will feature a concentration in agriculture – but he hopes only to use that while running cattle, which his family in Lane, Oklahoma has done for years.

Before the Big Time

Muggli’s dad was a bulldogger and his mom a barrel racer, so he’s the first in his family to use a rope in the arena. Nick Rowland had ridden some colts for the Mugglis, which helped give Wyatt the bug. While most calf ropers tend to heel, he likes heading because he likes dictating the speed of the run by how well he scores and how well he rides his horse. His number-one stick, by the way, is a sorrel he bought from Cory Kidd that he calls, of course, “Kidd.”

With $10,012, Muggli outranks all other rookie headers but only has about 15 rodeos left to count with Casey McCleskey, who ranks fifth in the rookie heeling standings (leader Rance Doyal has been on a heater lately with Jake Clay). Combined with the $12,031 that Muggli has earned tying calves, his $22,044 in all-around earnings has him way out ahead of Jase Staudt, who does the same two events.

“Trevor’s (Brazile) been my hero since I was a little kid,” said Muggli. “Obviously the all-around is important to me. But honestly, I wouldn’t choose one event over the other because normally if one isn’t going well, the other kind of supports you.”

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Jumping into the fray hasn’t been easy. For instance, Muggli and McCleskey were 5.4 at Cody and it didn’t even crack the top 20. But they’ve clocked short 4s to win some Texas rodeos and, as Muggli puts it, have “everybody’s goal – to win as much as possible.”

Getting a new taste of rodeo all over the country has been an education that can only help in seasons to come.

“It’s fun getting to go to rodeos we’ve heard about since we were kids,” Muggli said. “But we entered too many this winter, since team ropers can only count 65 now. It’s funny, at home a $2,000-added rodeo is good; out here, it’s terrible.”

Resistol Rookie Headers

1. Wyatt Muggli, $10,012.45

2. Tucker Menz, $9,682.70

3. Reno Stoebner, $9,574.90

4. John Gaona, $6,994.91

5. Jase Staudt, $5,859.72

6. Braxton Culpepper, $5,803.46

7. Jon Peterson, $5,309.38

8. Jhett Trenary, $4,903.17

9. Jay Crain, $4,814.53

 10. Cash Duty, $4,729.29

Resistol Rookie Heelers

1. Rance Doyal, $17,769.85

2. Cole Curry, $14,812.46

3. Caleb Hendrix, $14,679.33

4. Calgary Smith, $9,631.51

5. Casey McCleskey, $8,748.52

6. Riley Curuchet, $7,518.38

7. Trent Vaught, $6,853.54

8. Sam Morgan, $3,027.74

9. Clay Elkington, $2,748.63

10. Andy Smallwood, $1,968.48

Resistol Rookie All-Around

1. Wyatt Muggli, $22,043.66

2. Jase Staudt, $8,013.69

3. Jon Peterson, $5,739.24

4. Tuff Hardman, $4,878.23

5. Sam Morgan, $3,441.80

6. Rooster Yazzie, $2,660.82

7. Tyler Zebrovious, $2,009.72

8. Monty James, $1,631.47

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