UTM announces passing of rodeo team graduate assistant

 UTM announces passing of rodeo team graduate assistant

A UT Martin rodeo graduate assistant passed away Friday morning.

UTM Sports Information Director Ryne Rickman says 23-year-old Ashley Brooks was in her second season as a graduate assistant for the rodeo program following a standout career as a student-athlete.

Brooks had been a member of the UT Martin rodeo program since 2014, taking part in barrel racing, breakaway roping and goat tying events from 2014-19. In addition to her competing as a student-athlete throughout the course of the 2018-19 season, she also served as a graduate assistant coach.

In 2017-18, Brooks ranked fourth in the Ozark Region in barrel racing, compiling 490 overall points. She advanced to the 2015 College National Finals Rodeo as a freshman, finishing 23rd in the nation in barrel racing with a 43.53 average time.

In a statement, UTM head rodeo coach John Luthi said, “Ashley was a fierce competitor and was so impactful to our team. It’s hard to imagine she’s gone. She will be greatly missed.”

Brooks was a South Fulton native and came to UT Martin from Obion County Central High School.

She graduated from UT Martin in the spring of 2018 with a degree in agriculture and was pursuing a graduate degree in agricultural and natural resources system management at UTM.