UPCOMING EVENT: Bass Fishing League - 2016 - Lake Ouachita

Biggs charge ends in victory

James Biggs hoist the trophy in celebration after winning The Bass Federation National Championship.

ROGERS, Arkansas-In a testament to his faith and fishing skills, James Biggs of Richland Hills, Texas, charged from 17th place on day one to eventual victory in the Boater Division of The Bass Federation's prestigious 2014 National Championship at Grand Lake.
James Biggs is in disbelief as he is crowned The Bass Federation National Champion.
Biggs built on his 10-pound, 1-ounce day one basket with a monstrous 19-pound, 5-ounce bag on day two. That catch vaulted him into second place with 29 pounds, 6 ounces, hot on the heels of leader John Talton of Georgetown, Tenn., who finished day two with 29 pounds, 10 ounces.
With television cameras rolling and the world watching, Biggs brought a 5-bass limit weighing 14 pounds, 5 ounces to the scale on the final day, bringing his total to 43 pounds, 11 ounces. When Talton, who weighed in last, put up two bass weighing 6 pounds, 10 ounces for a total weight of 36 pounds, 4 ounces, Biggs claimed the crown in front of a roaring crowd gathered at the John Q. Hammons Center.
"It's so exciting, and it hasn't totally sunk in yet," he said, visibly shaking with emotion. For Biggs, a firefighter and paramedic by trade, the win marked the culmination of a faith-based confidence that he was destined for victory. "The Lord really blessed me," he said, explaining that for the past several months-including throughout the tournament's ups and downs-he believed he was going to take the championship. "I didn't know how it was going to happen, and it wasn't meant in an arrogant way, but I didn't have any doubts. I fished with that mentality, and it made a difference in the way I processed things on the water."
Biggs' tactics hinged on a pair of productive patterns. "I had two things going," he said. "I'd go shallow in the morning, flipping for bucks and the females that had moved up early. After getting a few fish in the boat to settle my nerves, I'd move south and slow-roll an Alabama rig for big fish." He noted that rocky banks and bridge pilings were key structure, especially those situated in bass-funneling creek arm bottlenecks.
For Talton, settling for second was tempered by the knowledge that qualifying for the final round had already earned him a trip to the BFL All-American tournament. "I've been thinking about this all week, and I decided, `If I make it to the All-American, that's fine,'" he told the crowd before congratulating Biggs on the win.
After a strong south wind on day one ignited the bass he was targeting, Talton rocketed out of the gate, bringing in a 5-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 1 ounce. But when the wind died on day two, he sacked just four fish weighing 9 pounds, 9 ounces. While the return of a healthy south breeze bode well for him during the final day of competition, he noted that his best action had been coming later in the day. "My fish hadn't been starting to bite until 1 p.m., and we had to be off the water early today," he said. "If we'd had another couple of hours, who knows."
Don Muir
In the Non-Boater Division, Don Muir of Perryhall, Md., lead both days one and two. In fact, his 31-pound, 7-ounce total going into the final round offered a 5-pound, 15-ounce advantage over his nearest rival. As it turned out, it was enough to outlast the competition even after blanking on day three. Stephen Scoggin of Lebanon, Tenn., made a run at first with three bass weighing 9 pounds, 13 ounces, but ended up a strong second with a 30-pound total.
"It's unbelievable, especially after zeroing on the last day," said Muir, who retired six months ago as a police sergeant after 39 years in law enforcement. "I was nervous all day long. But the good Lord was watching out for me." Muir also attributed a bit of good luck to a coin he found during prefishing. "Wednesday morning, I picked up a penny in the parking lot," he said. It was dated 1983, the year his son was born. "I put it in my pocket. And believe me, when I was listening to the other non-boaters' weights being called out today, I was rubbing that penny."
Muir credited friend and fellow bass tournament angler Jeremy Starks for convincing him to try Alabama rigs on Grand Lake. "I'd never fished one before, but he told me several months ago I had to throw them here," he said. "I didn't catch anything on them in practice, but after taking an 8-pounder on an A-rig on day one, I fished them all three days," he said. "I'd throw them on rocky main-lake rocky points, move to the secondary points and then back into the creeks. Most of the fish were on the secondary points. But today they moved and we had to scramble."
Held April 10-12 on Grand Lake, the TBF championship pitted the top 94 anglers from the federation's seven regions against one another for more than $200,000 in cash and prizes. Divided equally into boater and non-boater divisions, all anglers competed the first two days of the event. The top boater and non-boater from each region move on to the final day. Regardless of their day three finish, each regional winner received a paid entry into the prestigious BFL All-American Tournament.
After day three, top boaters are:
1. James Biggs, Richland Hills, Texas, 13 bass, 43-11
2. John Talton, Georgetown, Tenn., 11 bass, 36-4
3. Dino Moutogiannis, Newington, Conn., 13 bass, 34-13
4. Steve Dinkler, Daniels, W.Va., 11 bass, 32-5
5. Nicholas Fitzsimmons, Lyle, Wash., eight bass, 27-0
6. Jon Griffith, Mesa, Ariz., 10 bass, 21-3
7. Dave Cermak, Hebron, Ind., six bass, 17-10

Top non-boaters are:
1. Don Muir, Perryhall, Md., eight bass, 31-7
2. Stephen Scoggin, Lebanon, Tenn., 11 bass, 30-0
3. Nickolas Marsh, Commerce Twp., Mich., 12 bass, 28-13
4. Richard Vizcarra, Peoria, Ariz., 10 bass, 26-8
5. Brian Maloney, Osage Beach, Mo., 10 bass, 25-10
6. David Simmons, Molalla, Ore., four bass, 13-7
7. Keith Cleary, Bethel, Conn., six bass, 12-3
Overall, boaters brought in 17 bass weighing 44 pounds, 14 ounces. Only one boater recorded a limit. Non-boaters brought eight bass to the scale weighing 21 pounds, 13 ounces. No non-boaters brought in limits.
For a full list of results visit:
http://bassfederation.com/tournaments/results/federation-championship-results/
The overall boater and non-boater champions receive an invitation to fish the FLW Forrest Wood Cup, where all competitors are guaranteed a check, and the winner receives $500,000. The top boater and non-boater also win a coveted TBF Living The Dream Package. The boater's package includes paid entry fees to the FLW Tour as a touring pro, plus cash, the use of a custom-wrapped Chevy truck and Ranger boat for the year, and a travel stipend for each event. The top non-boater will receive fully paid entry fees into the Rayovac Series of choice. As a bonus, Biggs won a brand-new Ranger Z 518c through the Ranger Cup Program.
All three days of the TBF National Championship launched at Wolf Creek Park. Day one and two weigh-ins were held lakeside. For day three, the weigh-in moved to the John Q. Hammons Center in Rogers, Arkansas. Held in conjunction with the FLW Tour's Beaver Lake tournament, the final day's festivities included the FLW Expo beginning at noon; TBF weigh-in at 3 p.m.; and FLW Tour weigh-in at 4 p.m.
The TBF National Championship is produced by a partnership between The Bass Federation and FLW Outdoors, and TBF national president Robert Cartlidge was quick to acknowledge his appreciation for the collaboration. "I can't tell you how proud we are to be partners with FLW, and how much everything they do for us means to the federation," he said.
TBF National Championship sponsors include Chevy, Ranger Boats, Evinrude, Cabela's, Solar Bat, Berkley, Lowrance, Power-Pole, Indigo Sky Casino, Grand Lake Association and Travel Oklahoma. For details, visit bassfederation.com, contact TBF National Headquarters at (580) 765-9031.

Tags: dan-johnson  headline-story  2014-04-10-grand-lake 

/news/2016-02-10-dudley-links-up-with-livingston-lures

Dudley Links Up with Livingston Lures

Livingston Lures has added three-time Walmart FLW Tour Angler of the Year David Dudley to its pro-staff. The Virginia pro joins two-time FLW AOY Andy Morgan and former FLW Rookie of the Year Stetson Blaylock on the Team Livingston roster. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-10-power-pole-extends-partnership-with-flw

Power-Pole Extends Partnership with FLW

FLW announced yesterday that JL Marine Systems, manufacturer of Power-Pole shallow-water anchor systems, has signed a sponsorship extension for the 2016 season. This will be the sixth consecutive season that the two organizations have partnered. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-09-flw-college-fishing-western-conference-opens-season-on-shasta-lake

FLW College Fishing Western Conference Opens Season on Shasta Lake

REDDING, Calif. – FLW College Fishing is headed to Lake Shasta Feb. 20 for the first of three regular-season stops in the Western Conference. A full field of college teams will be competing for a top award of $2,000 and a berth in the FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-09-lake-shasta-set-to-host-costa-flw-series-opener-presented-by-minn-kota

Lake Shasta Set to Host Costa FLW Series Opener Presented by Minn Kota

REDDING, Calif. – The Costa FLW Series is headed to Lake Shasta Feb. 18-20 for a tournament presented by Minn Kota when as many as 300 pros and co-anglers will take to the water for the first stop of 2016 in the Western Division. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-09-montgomery-targets-prespawn-bass-for-win

Montgomery Targets Prespawn Bass for Win

Local angler Scott Montgomery of Eufaula, Ala., weighed a five-bass limit totaling 21 pounds, 1 ounce, Saturday to win the first FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bulldog Division tournament of 2016 on Lake Eufaula. For his victory, Montgomery took home a check for $4,127. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-09-top-10-patterns-from-lake-okeechobee

Top 10 Patterns from Lake Okeechobee

Oklahoma’s Bradley Hallman sewed up his first Walmart FLW Tour victory at the season-opener on Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats by pitching and punching reed heads in the South Bay area with a Reaction Innovations Sweet Beaver. Hallman stuck with his program despite up-and-down air temperatures, high winds and all the curveballs Mother Nature could throw at him. Here's how the rest of the top 10 got it done. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-08-top-10-baits-from-lake-okeechobee

Top 10 Baits from Lake Okeechobee

The Walmart FLW Tour presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Okeechobee went from a tight race to a runaway in a hurry when Bradley Hallman just wouldn’t stop catching the big ones. As for the lures he used, and those put to work by the rest of the top 10, some Okeechobee staples were applied as well as a few oddball baits. If you’re thinking of heading down to the Big O or anywhere else in Florida soon, you might want to acquire a few of the lures they fished. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-07-hallman-wins-walmart-flw-tour-on-lake-okeechobee-presented-by-ranger-boats

Hallman Wins Walmart FLW Tour on Lake Okeechobee Presented by Ranger Boats

CLEWISTON, Fla. – Pro Bradley Hallman of Norman, Oklahoma, brought just two bass to the scale Sunday totaling 6 pounds, 8 ounces, but it was still enough to earn the win at the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. Hallman’s four-day cumulative total of 16 bass weighing 71 pounds, 2 ounces earned him the win by an impressive 14-pound, 14-ounce margin over second-place pro Alex Davis of Albertville, Alabama, and $100,000 in the tournament that featured 169 of the best bass-fishing anglers in the world competing in the first FLW Tour event of the regular season. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-07-big-hall-man-on-okeechobee

Big (Hall)Man on Okeechobee

It was the Bradley Hallman show all week long at Lake Okeechobee at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats. Though, the Norman, Okla., pro struggled on day four and brought in only two fish for 6 pounds, 8 ounces, he pulled off the wire-to-wire victory in his first event on Tour. The 13-pound, 9-ounce lead that Hallman built up through the first three days of competition was enough that he didn't actually have to weigh his fish today. Hallman's tournament total of 71 pounds, 2 ounces far exceeded the 56-04 caught by runner-up Alex Davis. For the win, Hallman earned $100,000. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-07-lake-okeechobee-day-4-coverage

Lake Okeechobee Day 4 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-06-top-5-patterns-from-lake-okeechobee-day-3

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Okeechobee Day 3

Across the board, weights fell off on day three of the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats and hosted by Roland and Mary Ann Martin's Marina and Resort and the Hendry County Tourism and Development Council. No one in the top 20 crossed the 20-pound mark. Cloud cover, which prevented the water temperature from rising much above 65 degrees, and low water clarity might both have slowed the replenishment of bass moving into spawn. Tournament leader Bradley Hallman experienced a bit of a stall in the action as well, bringing just four fish to the scales, but he still managed to increase his lead to 13 pounds, 9 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-06-hallman-extends-lead-on-day-three-at-walmart-flw-tour-on-lake-okeechobee-presented-by-ranger-boats

Hallman Extends Lead On Day Three At Walmart FLW Tour On Lake Okeechobee Presented By Ranger Boats

Anchored by an 8-pound, 10-ounce kicker, pro Bradley Hallman of Norman, Oklahoma, brought four bass to the scale Saturday totaling 14 pounds, 3 ounces to extend his lead to more than 13½ pounds heading in to the final day of competition at the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. Hallman’s... READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-06-can-anyone-catch-hallman-

Can Anyone Catch Hallman?

Despite catching only four keepers on day three, Norman, Okla., pro Bradley Hallman extended his lead at the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Okeechobee. With a day-three weight of 14 pounds, 3 ounces and a tournament total of 64-10, his margin over second-place angler Alex Davis is now 13 pounds, 9 ounces. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-06-montgomery-wins-flw-bass-fishing-league-bulldog-division-opener-on-lake-eufaula

Montgomery Wins FLW Bass Fishing League Bulldog Division Opener on Lake Eufaula

EUFAULA, Ala. – Local angler Scott Montgomery of Eufaula, weighed a five-bass limit totaling 21 pounds, 1 ounce, Saturday to win the first FLW Bass Fishing League (BFL) Bulldog Division tournament of 2016 on Lake Eufaula. For his victory, Montgomery took home a check for $4,127. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-06-okeechobee-day-3-coverage

Okeechobee Day 3 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-05-top-5-patterns-from-lake-okeechobee-day-2

Top 5 Patterns from Lake Okeechobee Day 2

Fueled by 25 mph north winds, the Lake Okeechobee washing machine cleansed some livewells today, keeping them free of the 20-pound limits that are so common here when the weather is sunny, 75 and calm. However, a few 20-plus-pound limits still snuck through the rinse cycle to grace the scales. The biggest limit once again belonged to Bradley Hallman of Norman, Okla. He added 25 pounds, 7 ounces to the 25 he caught on day one. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-05-oklahoma-s-hallman-extends-lead-at-walmart-flw-tour-on-lake-okeechobee-presented-by-ranger-boats

Oklahoma’s Hallman Extends Lead at Walmart FLW Tour on Lake Okeechobee Presented by Ranger Boats

CLEWISTON, Fla. – Pro angler Bradley Hallman of Norman, Oklahoma, brought a five-bass limit weighing 25 pounds, 7 ounces to the scale Friday to extend his lead on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour at Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. Hallman will bring an 8-pound, 8-ounce advantage into day three of the four-day competition that features 169 of the top bass-fishing anglers in the world competing for a top cash award of up to $125,000. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-05-cales-earns-co-angler-win

Cales Earns Co-angler Win

Co-angler Tim Cales of Sandstone, W.Va., earned his second win with FLW after sacking up 30 pounds, 11 ounces over two days in the Walmart FLW Tour event presented by Ranger Boats on Lake Okeechobee. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-05-hallman-way-in-front

Hallman Way in Front

Bradley Hallman is doing his best to make the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats a one-man show. But Alabama pro Alex Davis hopes to spoil Hallman’s hopes of a wire-to-wire victory. Today, Hallman weighed in 25 pounds, 7 ounces to raise his two-day total to 50-07. He’s led the tournament each day thus far. Davis weighed in 20-15 to move from third to second but is still 8 1/2 pounds behind the leader. READ MORE »

/news/2016-02-05-okeechobee-day-2-coverage

Okeechobee Day 2 Coverage

Daily updates from the Walmart FLW Tour event on Lake Okeechobee presented by Ranger Boats. READ MORE »