UPCOMING EVENT: Walmart Bass Fishing League - 2016 - Lake Okeechobee

Another Nixon joins the FLW ranks

Now a guide near his Arkansas home, Leland Nixon sold his cattle farm to fund a career in the fishing industry.

It's not unusual to see the last name "Nixon" near the top of the standings in a bass tournament. But at the Walmart Bass Fishing League Arkie Division tournament at Lake Dardanelle on Feb. 22, the Nixon in the top five wasn't the one most fishing fans are accustomed to seeing show out at tournaments. In his first career BFL event, Leland Nixon of Bee Branch, Ark., youngest brother of Chevy pro Larry Nixon, sacked an impressive 21-pound, 3-ounce limit to finish third, supporting the argument that bass fishing talent often runs in the family. "There are three of us Nixon brothers," Leland says. "Larry is the oldest, then there's Donnie, who works as a fishing guide on Toledo Bend, and I'm the youngest - 13 years younger than Larry." In the Nixon family, it seems that the love of bass fishing was developed early and nurtured often. "My brothers are a lot older than me, but we all ended up with the bass bug," adds Leland. "Dad bought one of the first Rangers ever to come off the production floor in 1969, and Larry started guiding out of it right after Greers Ferry was flooded. When Larry got married and moved to Texas, dad let him take the Ranger with him. He guided for 365 straight days, sent Daddy all the money he made guiding to pay for the boat and Dad bought a new one." "We [all three brothers] still get to fish with each other now and then, and we're really competitive about it - especially Larry," he adds. "If you get one up on him out of the back of the boat, you don't want to brag about it, or he'll back-boat you the rest of the day. You won't see any more fresh water." The Nixon Guide Service Leland Nixon Leland, 50, has two children and is happily married to his wife of 30 years, Paula. He owns a heating and air-conditioning business and has fished his whole life, but didn't own a bass boat until five years ago. "We had a small herd of cattle, and one day they knocked me to the ground," he says. "I decided right then that I was going to sell every one of them and buy myself a brand new bass boat." Shortly after purchasing his boat, Leland began guiding on Greers Ferry, where he still guides today for walleyes and hybrids in early spring - and black bass at his clients' request. A couple of his career highlights include winning the 2010 Arkie Cup on Greers Ferry and pulling a 10.55-pound largemouth from the lake. For more information on his guide service, visit his website. Strong Start in the BFL During the Dardenelle BFL tournament, Leland picked up on a subtlety that the other anglers in his area missed. "I was fishing an enormous spawning flat, and cold water had pushed most of the fish out into deeper water," he says. "There were a bunch of competitors fishing out off of the bank, and as the day went on, I think the fishing pressure actually pushed those fish back to the bank. I was the only boat in my area to make the adjustment to move shallow." Leland NixonLeland Nixon He caught most of his fish by working a Strike King Sexy Shad spinnerbait through emergent lily pad stems in 1 1/2 feet of water. He credits his Power-Poles for allowing him to position the boat in the wind, and his Dobyns rod for handling the hard-fighting prespawners. Leland followed up his high finish at Dardanelle with a 39th-place finish at Lake Ouachita and a 21st-place finish at Greers Ferry. He's currently fourth in the standings in the Arkie Division. As for his mentors in the fishing industry, it's obvious who Leland would pick. "Larry's always been my hero, and still is," Leland says. "He hasn't changed a bit from the time we were kids. He's just a great brother."

Tags: article 


Staff Picks for Holliday Gifts

With Christmas just around the corner, perhaps you could use some help with your shopping. Whether you’re looking for the perfect gift for an angler or thinking of what to put on your own list for Santa to deliver, Christmas shopping can be a daunting task. Luckily our staff of elves has some pretty good suggestions to cover just about any taste or budget. READ MORE »


An Angler’s Thanksgiving

A number of pros have reasons to be grateful this Thanksgiving holiday as they contemplate the season behind them and what they managed to accomplish. Yet there are others who didn’t make quite as many ripples in the tournament waters this year, but nevertheless have cause to celebrate and look to the future. READ MORE »


Black Friday Deals



Fishing 101: Soft-Plastic Swimbaits

While all swimbaits accomplish the same thing – imitating a prey fish swimming through the water – there are now hundreds of baits from which to choose, and there are models for tackling just about any scenario. READ MORE »


Critter Shots of the Year

You see some things when you’re on the water for 10 months covering tournaments from Florida to California. Most of the time our on-the-water team has its cameras trained on the anglers, but every once in a while something from nature intervenes that is just too cool to pass up. READ MORE »


How to Succeed as a Co-angler

Fishing tournaments as a co-angler is a great first step to take toward a more advanced level of competitive bass fishing. Not only do you get more time on the water, you often end up fishing behind some very experienced anglers that can teach you some valuable lessons. READ MORE »


Episode 9 of FLW TV Airs Tonight

Watch as Ontario native Curtis Richardson qualifies for the Forrest Wood Cup and earns the title of Walmart Bass Fishing League All-American Champion on Kentucky Lake. READ MORE »


Peek Will Sit Out 2016 Tour

Alabama pro Richard Peek will forego the 2016 Walmart FLW Tour season to resolve back problems. Peek, of Centre, Ala., was told by his doctor that he should take off a year from tournament fishing so that surgery or other measures could be performed to correct a spinal deformity and relieve his pain. READ MORE »


2016 BFL All-American Qualifiers

With the completion of the Walmart Bass Fishing League Wild Card at Lake Hartwell – won by Mike Devere – all but The Bass Federation National Championship qualifiers are in place for the 2016 BFL All-American June 8-11 on Lake Barkley presented by the Cadiz-Trigg County Tourism Commission. READ MORE »


Jigging Up Late Fall Smallies

In the North Country, as fall fades and sportsmen settle in for the arrival of winter, many people put the boat away and forsake the water for the woods. For those willing to brave the elements on the lake, however, the reward is some of the best smallmouth bass fishing of the year for some of the biggest fish of the season. READ MORE »


Rayovac FLW Series Registration Opens

This is the week to register for everyone planning on fishing the FLW Series in 2016. Registration has been open for the top 40 pros and co-anglers from each division of the 2015 FLW Series and the top 50 boaters and co-anglers from each division of the 2015 Walmart Bass Fishing League (BFL) for some time. Tuesday is when everyone else can begin to get in on the action. READ MORE »


College Championship Airs Tonight

Tune in for the 2015 FLW College Fishing National Championship to see Patrick Walters and Gettys Brannon of the University of South Carolina capture the title in front of the hometown crowd at Lake Murray. READ MORE »


5 Pros Weigh in on Hanselman

When Ray Hanselman won the 2015 Rayovac FLW Series Championship to cap his season-long dominance of the Texas Division just about everyone tuned in. It wasn’t just the stunning sweep that captivated pros and fans alike; it was how he did it – leading after the second day in every event he fished and winning with stunning margins of 5 pounds, 8 ounces at Amistad, 7-2 at Sam Rayburn, 12 pounds even on Texoma and 8-2 at the Championship. READ MORE »


Episode 7 of FLW TV Airs Tonight

Watch as Shawn Gordon pulls off the win on Grand Lake in Oklahoma and qualifies for the Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Ouachita in his home state of Arkansas. READ MORE »


How Hanselmania Happened

In case you’ve been stuck in a tree stand or out of social media range and didn’t already know it, Hanselman won all three regular-season Rayovac FLW Series Texas Division tournaments in 2015. And at the end of October he topped off his stellar run by winning the Rayovac FLW Series Championship on the Ohio River out of Paducah, Ky. READ MORE »


2014 Cup Wins Sports Tourism Award

The 2014 Forrest Wood Cup on Lake Murray in Columbia, S.C., was recently named the 2015 Champion of Economic Impact in Sports Tourism for the mid- to large market category by Sports Destination Management magazine. READ MORE »


5 Best Smallmouth Destinations

Fall is the time of year to treat yourself to one last fishing excursion before the snowflakes start to fall. And if you’re going to take a fishing road trip amid a backdrop of autumn’s colorful foliage, it might as well be for fat, angry brown bass, right? READ MORE »


College Championship Field Set

Now that the 2015 FLW College Fishing Conference Championships are complete, 58 teams have earned the opportunity to fish in the 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »


2016 FLW College Fishing Rules



2016 College Fishing Schedule and Rules

The 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship will be hosted by the Mountain Lakes Convention and Visitors Bureau on Lake Keowee in Seneca, S.C, March 17-19. All of the Championship action will be internationally televised on NBC Sports Network, the Pursuit Channel and the World Fishing Network. READ MORE »