NAMPA, Idaho - D&H Cattle Co. has announced the passing of
790 Mossy Oak Mudslinger.
He was 15.
"He's irreplaceable," said H.D. Page of the former World Champion Bull, "there's no doubt about it.
"I missed him a bunch when I had to retire him from the arena, and now I'm going to miss him even more as a sire. He was part of our family. He's done more for our family than any person."
Mossy Oak Mudslinger was among the greatest bucking bulls ever to have competed in the 20-year history of the PBR.
He had 94 outs in the PBR - 93 of which came in the Built Ford Tough Championship Round - with a career average bull score of over 45.8 points per out. He was ridden 27 times, 15 times by round-winners, with a career average score of 91.87 points.
'He's one of the all-time greats. He's right
up there with the all-time greats that never won it or won it one
time. He's right up there with Red Wolf or Blueberry Wine, and even
pushed Dillinger and Little Yellow Jacket to be as great as they
"And most of (the qualified rides) were in the short go, not just competing against the best bull riders of that time, but the best bull riders of that weekend," said PBR Livestock Director Cody Lambert, "so those are really impressive stats."
In addition to winning the 2006 title, he was the high-money bull of the regular season in 2005, earning the most money for the riders who managed to the make the whistle on him.
In 2004, Mike Lee tied for the highest marked ride of the year with 93.75 points on him. The highest score on Mossy Oak Mudslinger ever came three years earlier, when Cory McFadden covered him for 95.5 points at the World Finals in Las Vegas.
"He's one of the all-time greats," Lambert said. "He's right up there with the all-time greats that never won it or won it one time. He's right up there with Red Wolf or Blueberry Wine, and even pushed Dillinger and Little Yellow Jacket to be as great as they were."
Lambert compared him Lou Gehrig - one of the greatest baseball players ever to play for the New York Yankees. As great as his career was, he's always listed behind the legendary Babe Ruth.
In the years before finally winning the World Champion Bull title, Mossy Oak Mudslinger finished second to Dillinger and then finished second to Little Yellow Jacket.
"There were four years in a row he was nearly the World Champion," Lambert said, "and he was finally (the World Champion Bull) the last time.
'The Pages handled him his whole career the
very best anyone could handle him, and they retired him when he
still had it. That's such a cool thing. They didn't bring him
around when everybody could ride him. No one made the whistle on
him who wasn't a great rider.'
"It was like he knocked a home run in his final at-bat."
In his last out, Mossy Oak Mudslinger bucked off Guilherme Marchi in 5.1 seconds and was marked 46.5 points in Round 6 of the 2006 World Finals.
He was a six-time World Finals qualifier and big reason D&H Cattle Co. was named Stock Contractor of the Year for five years running from 2001 through 2005. Page & Teague Bucking Bulls won in 2006.
"The Pages handled him his whole career the very best anyone could handle him, and they retired him when he still had it," Lambert said. "That's such a cool thing. They didn't bring him around when everybody could ride him. No one made the whistle on him who wasn't a great rider."
Lambert said he has great memories of Mossy Oak Mudslinger.
One particular out he remembers happens to be the first time he saw him ridden. Lambert recalled the 3-year-old looking spectacular in Columbus, Ga., when Adam Carrillo rode him for 94.5 points in his third outing on the Built Ford Tough Series in 2001.
Lambert proclaimed, "He was just an amazing bull."
In an email, H.D.'s sister Johna said that in spite of the sadness of his passing, "Mudslinger was out breeding cows the day he died. His genetics will impact the industry for years to come. … Mudslinger left some great offspring to carry on his legacy."
Among his calves are Velvet Slinger, Copperhead Slinger, Double Oak, Little Snake and Hot Stuff.
"I haven't really even taken time to stop and reflect on how special he was," said H.D.
The father-son team of Dillon and H.D. hauled Mossy Oak Mudslinger together during his entire career.
While watching Saturday night's ABBI Classic competition, H.D. said, "I was thinking about how good he was as a calf and how good these calves are today, and it reminded me of just how special he was.
"I think he would dominate a futurity or a classic today."
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