Print Friendly

Today we continue the countdown of the Most Influential People in BBQ with the 16th most influential person in BBQ. Coming in as the 16th Most Influential Person in BBQ is pitmaster and founder of Big Poppa Smokers, Sterling Ball.

Sterling Ball

For most of us, it would be a major accomplishment to be on one list of Most Influential People, but Sterling Ball, who comes in at number 16 on our list of the Most Influential People in BBQ might just find himself on a similar list in the music industry as head of Ernie Ball guitar strings. The fact is you probably wouldn’t have found Sterling on this list a couple of years ago, but there is no faster mover in today’s BBQ world than Sterling Ball. As a relative newcomer to the world of BBQ, Ball can already claim one of the sports most prestigious titles – American Royal Invitational Champion, that goes well with his dozens of other calls. Ball doesn’t make our list for his competition success however. He sits at number 16 because of his innovative nature and desire to change the landscape of competition BBQ.

King of the Smoker

In 2012 Ball launched the inaugural King of the Smoker contests that pitted 24 of the nations top competition teams on perhaps the most level playing field of any contest. Each team is required to cook the same meat, use no garnish (that probably doesn’t upset them!), and are allowed no electricity to assist in their cook. With a generous prize purse, unparalleled hospitality and accommodations at one of America’s premier resorts, King of the Smoker, in only it’s second year is already being called the best competition in BBQ by the lucky teams who’ve been invited to compete. Perhaps the coolest part of the King of the Smoker concept is Ball’s desire to get the public involved and excited about BBQ by asking the competition teams to provide an education seminar on topics ranging from pits, to chicken cooking to injections & marinades. 

In addition to hosting the King of the Smoker contest Ball and his Online BBQ Supply Store, Big Poppa Smokers, formed the BPS Elite Team program in 2013 to raise money for children’s charities. In his spare time he has developed a line of championship rubs that many of the nations top teams are turning to in hopes of securing the ever harder to obtain GC’s, RGC’s and 1st place category calls. We’re big fans of the Jalleluja Seasoned Jalapeno Salt. We’ll be interesting to see what Ball has up his sleeve next.

On December 17th we’ll unveil the 15th most influential person in BBQ. We’ll unveil a new member of our Most Influential Person in BBQ List each day through the end of the year and we’ll crown The Most Influential Person in BBQ on Tuesday, December 31st.

To date we’ve previously unveiled the 17th through the 25th Most Influential People in BBQ.

17th – Rod Gray, Pellet Envy & Eat Barbecue

18th – Brad Orrison, The Shed

19th – Johnny Trigg, Smokin’ Triggers

20th – Danielle Dimovski, BBQ Crawl & Diva Q

21st – Bill Arnold, Blues Hog Barbecue Company

22nd – Competition BBQ Judge

23rd – Melissa Cookston, Memphis Barbecue Co. & Yazoo’s Delta Q

24th – Adam Perry Lang, Daisy May’s BBQ, Barbecoa & Cookbook Author

25th – Ronnie Cates, Smoke on the Water Productions

Will you make the list? Will someone you find deserving fall short of the top 25? Will you disagree with someone listed in the top 25? Check the Pork Barrel BBQ Blog daily now through December 31 and contribute to the discussion by adding comments to each days post!

Who is the most Influential Person in BBQ? Find out on December 31, 2013 when we reveal the Most Influential Person in BBQ.