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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas


Friday, July 28, 2000

SI still weighing plans for rodeo pix

Staff Writer
PECOS, July 28, 2000 -- West of the Pecos Rodeo fans will have a while to wait before seeing what Sports Illustrated has planned for the photos taken at this year's show. But the results figure to arrive on newsstands faster than the National Geographic photo essay on rodeo two years ago.

"We really don't know when it's going to run yet," said Rachel Cobb, who shot a series of photos during the four nights of this year's performance. "They may run two different stories. One may run later and one may run sooner."

Cobb freelances for Sports Illustrated, and flew into Pecos from the Cody Nights Rodeo in Cody, Wyo. She also shot the `10 Sleep Rodeo' as part of the planned photo essay. "The name comes from the fact it is 10 sleeps away from Yellowstone Park. They have a great little rodeo."

Cobb said the she would pretty much have enough photos after shooting this moth to do the two features. "One is about a series of color portraits, and one is a series of black and white behind-the scenes pictures," she said last week. "I shot the atmosphere of the entire event and concentrated a lot on the cowboys, to kinds of look and see what mostly goes into making rodeos."

Aside from the cowboys themselves, Cobb said she also shot pictures of former State Rep. Richard C. Slack, whose grandfather participated in the first West of the Pecos Rodeo and for whom the 2000 rodeo was dedicated, along with the girls who led the Grand Entry of the parade each night.

"I also took some pictures of children, and I photographed Cole Armstrong and Starkey (Warren, the West of the Pecos Rodeo President)," Cobb said.

Sports Illustrated's focus on the rodeo comes two years after famed western photographer William Albert Allard attended the West of the Pecos Rodeo, as part of a year-long photo shoot of various rodeos around the U.S. Allard didn't finish up his series until the National Finals Rodeo in December, 1998, and the 22-page feature appeared in the September 1999 edition of National Geographic, with accompanying text by Michael Parfit.

As far as Sports Illustrated's plans, Cobb said, "They're not sure about text.

They're still deciding whether to go with the portraits out behind-the-scenes, or they may go with both."

Cobb, who comes from Dallas but now lives in New York, said "I didn't really interview people so much as I talked to them about the week. I had an amazing morning talking to Richard Slack, who was in World War II and was telling me about the war."

Cobb also thanked Pecos police investigator Kelly Davis, who formerly ran Howard's Studio and helped her do some of the photo work the second night of the rodeo.

"He was really helpful for me in (taking photos at) the chutes,' Cobb said.

Flag football tourney scheduled as fundraiser

PECOS, July 28, 2000 -- A flag football tournament has been scheduled for next month in Pecos, with proceeds going to benefit the new Pecos Eagle Pee Wee Football program.

Jesse Solis said he is organizing the tournament to help promote the Pee Wee program, which will put local third through sixth graders in helmets and pads for the first time in 20 years.

The program is similar to ones cities such as Odessa, Andrews and Monahans have had for many years, and is designed to help the players get acquainted with regular football before beginning play within the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD in junior high school.

"This program is something I only wished we had as I was growing up," Solis said. "This could be a key in Pecos becoming competitive with the surrounding communities in the school football programs."

Sign-ups for the Pee Wee football program are continuing through Aug. 18 at the Reeves County Community Sports and Recreation Department, while registration for the flag football tournament will run through Aug. 24, with the tournament itself set for Aug. 26-27 at the Pecos High School football practice field. Entry fee for the tournament is $125 per team.

"Knowing that starting a program such as this is rather expensive, I decided to dedicate a weekend of my time to help raise money to donate towards the Pee Wee football program," Solis said. "Teams will be coming to participate from towns or cities such as El Paso, Odessa, Midland, Monahans Alpine, Kermit, Fort Stockton and of course Pecos. I would especially like to challenge all P-B-T ISD coaches in participating as well."

"Speaking on behalf of the Eagle Pee Wee Football board, we applaud Jesse Solis on his dedication and efforts in helping us fund this progra." said board member Randy Baeza.

Solis added that, I would also like to ask the local merchants of Pecos to sponsor this tournament, for it would greatly help in my intentions to help partially fund the program.

Solis said there would be no roster limits on the teams entered and awards would be given to the first and second place finishers, with all-tournament and MVP trophies depending on the number of teams entered. He added that because the tournament is on school grounds, no alcohol will be allowed in the area.

For further information, call Solis at 447-3757 or 447-9685.

Far Eastern Cowboys get one-game test

AP Sports Writer
WICHITA FALLS, July 28, 2000 - Masufumi Kawaguchi wants more than a feel-good appearance in his homeland for the Dallas Cowboys. The linebacker from Japan wants to get noticed by the NFL even though he knows how difficult it could be.

"That's why I came here," Kawaguchi, 27, said Thursday after his first workout with the Cowboys. "If I get beat up so bad here then I will realize I must retire, but not right now."

Kawaguchi and receiver Masato Itai, two Japanese players who have played in NFL Europe, both have joined the Cowboys for what is supposed to be only a one-game stint.

The two will be in uniform, and could play, when the Cowboys take on Atlanta in the American Bowl in Tokyo on Aug. 5. Their appearance on the roster is part of the deal for the overseas game, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said.

At 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, Kawaguchi isn't a prototype linebacker, but wants at least a chance to make an NFL practice squad after four years with the Admirals in NFL Europe. He knows he might have to make his impression on special teams.

"Maybe I've never played football that much intense which I will be on game day if they put me on special teams," Kawaguchi said. "It would be a lot better if they put me in as linebacker. If they put me in on a kickoff, I will play real hard."

This will actually be Kawaguchi's second NFL game. He played for the Green Bay Packers against Kansas City in the 1998 American Bowl.

Itai was the first Japanese player to catch a touchdown pass in NFL Europe when he caught a 12-yard TD pass from Admirals quarterback Jim Kubiak in week 9 of the 2000 season. On Thursday, he was taking passes from Troy Aikman and Randall Cunningham.

"It was a very good experience. The only difference is the speed. I missed some balls," said the 29-year-old Itai, whose goal is to have a catch in the American Bowl.

Cowboys coach Dave Campo said the two players have distinguished themselves in NFL Europe. But to what extent they will play for the Cowboys in the American Bowl can't yet be determined.

"It's a little difficult from the standpoint of not having a lot of practice time, the number of snaps they get is difficult," Campo said. "We'll try to get them used to a couple of things they feel comfortable with, like routes that the receiver would feel comfortable with."

This is not the first time the Cowboys have added an international player for a specific game.

"One year when we played in Mexico we had a Mexican player play with us, a receiver," Jones said. "This is good. There is a pretty active American football participation in Japan."

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