UPCOMING EVENT: Bass Fishing League - 2016 - Lake Okeechobee

/tips/2016-07-11-5-rookie-lessons-learned

5 Rookie Lessons Learned

People have asked me what my first year on the Walmart FLW Tour was like. Well, it was like running headfirst into a hurricane for a few months. I came out the other side a little battered, bruised and smelling like fish. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-07-08-reunited-and-it-feels-so-good

Reunited, and it Feels so Good

This year I really had a reunion with finesse fishing. Most of my better tournaments came from fishing some type of finesse presentation. Finesse tactics seemed to always give me a certain confidence about the day. While finesse tactics are nothing new to the game of bass fishing, this year I regained the confidence and joy of catching bass on smaller offerings. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-24-three-things-by-dd-kentucky-lake

Three Things by DD: Kentucky Lake

Kentucky Lake did not go the way I intended. I was pumped and ready to rock out a top-20 finish. I had great expectations of myself, but nothing seemed to come together. Practice was dicey, but I thought for sure I could put something together to make the cut. That was until day one came, and the whole vibe of my day instantly went from eager to agitated. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-22-two-exciting-events-to-look-forward-to

Two Exciting Events to Look Forward To

We are in the last stretch of the 2016 Walmart FLW Tour. Awaiting us is the Lake Champlain tournament in just a few days. A couple of things will be settled there: the pro field for the Forrest Wood Cup and the Angler of the Year. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-14-so-you-re-telling-me-there-s-a-chance-

So You’re Telling Me There’s a Chance?

On day two, I made my 75-mile commute only to find a local sitting on my best offshore spot. I asked politely if I could fish, and he had zero intentions of letting me. I then got to watch him boat a 7-pound largemouth. Ouch. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-06-heading-in-to-the-home-stretch

Heading in to the Home Stretch

With most of the Walmart FLW Tour already in the books, a lot will be determined in the next few weeks – a lot of very important things, such as Angler of the Year and who’s going to be among the 35 Tour qualifiers to the Forrest Wood Cup. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-06-02-close-calls-ounces-and-missing-bass-at-gaston

Close Calls, Ounces and Missing Bass at Gaston

When I recently pulled off my first FLW Bass Fishing League win, finishing a single ounce ahead of the second-place finisher on Lake Gaston in late April, a friend posted on Facebook, “You went back and got it. So close last time.” READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-26-not-quite-ledge-patterns

Not Quite Ledge Patterns

I was checking Kentucky Lake the other day for the upcoming Walmart FLW Tour event, and I felt that it was a little behind as far as having the right water temperature for the fish to move offshore to the ledges. On my home lake, Chickamauga, they’re already on the ledges in pretty good numbers. I don’t know why it is exactly, but at Kentucky Lake the fish don’t start filtering out good until the water hits the 70s. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-18-how-the-all-american-launched-my-career

How the All-American Launched My Career

Prior to the 1992 All-American, I’d been considering making the leap to fishing professionally. I’d been fishing what were Redman tournaments (now BFLs) for years, and a lot of local team tournaments. I’d even won a Redman and qualified for the Regional two or three years in a row. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-16-three-things-by-dd-pickwick-lake

Three Things by DD: Pickwick Lake

Lets talk about those uncontrollable circumstances. I experienced several of those at Pickwick, and I will highlight just three: weather, other people and the fish. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-12-parkey-wesley-and-a-95-pound-blue-cat

Parkey, Wesley and a 95-Pound Blue Cat

A few days ago Strader and I were fishing below Wheeler Dam on Wilson Lake for a media event hosted by T-H Marine when we witnessed a quarter-mile duel between a local angler and a mammoth blue catfish. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-10-apples-and-oranges

Apples and Oranges

I fish about 100 days each year out of a kayak. I feel I am really good at it, both at catching big fish and a lot of fish. BUT, I spend a lot of energy finding out-of-the -way, lightly pressured, big-fish areas to fish. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-04-flw-pros-role-models-and-teachers

FLW Pros: Role Models and Teachers

Kids are growing up in this era needing to be more entrepreneurial than generations before to succeed in the job market, or in general. Schools are recognizing this, but are still generally fashioned in the same manner as 50 years ago: to prepare students for college and then a “job” that may or may not be there. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-05-04-arkansas-unified-fishing-derby-a-success

Arkansas Unified Fishing Derby a Success

This event focused on bringing the youth of the area together with local Special Olympics athletes to enjoy something that everyone can love … FISHING! READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-27-dd-3-things-pros-overlook-on-tour

DD: 3 Things Pros Overlook on Tour

Beaver Lake showed up this time, kids. The fishing was the best that I’ve ever seen it at Beaver. The largemouth bites were on fire. I finished 19th overall and am thankful for the much-needed schooling on how to fish this lake. As we know, the conditions change daily out there. I always leave with a handful of tips for next time, and it always pays off. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-25-dead-last

Dead Last

There were 166 pros at Beaver Lake, the third stop on the Walmart FLW Tour, which has now reached its halfway mark in 2016. I placed 166th, with only one fish over two days of competition. Dead last. If you are looking for tips on winning your next tournament at Beaver Lake, you are reading the wrong article. If you are looking for tips on how to win anything that you really care about in the long run, then read on. This article could help you learn to find success from failure. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-16-places-over-patterns

Places Over Patterns

Beaver is known as a pattern lake. That hasn’t been the case for me this week. Normally, you come here, it’s cool weather, and you crank or you throw a swimbait. Or say the fish are on wood, so you go around and flip wood all day. You run a pattern. This time, I couldn’t figure out any of those little patterns to run. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-15-changing-plans-and-making-moves

Changing Plans and Making Moves

My biggest worry right now is trying to figure out how to cancel my flight for tomorrow. That’s a good worry to have since I’m now fishing on day three. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-14-a-costly-mistake

A Costly Mistake

Capt. Blake Smith goes in-depth on the mistake that might have knocked him out of contention. READ MORE »

/tips/2016-04-05-my-national-championship-experience

My National Championship Experience

Wow, what a ride. The 2016 FLW College Fishing National Championship is still a blur as my life goes back to the way it was. I have been overwhelmed with interviews, tests, class and work since I have gotten back, but that is what we college kids are used to I guess. READ MORE »