UPCOMING EVENT: FLW Tour - 2019 - Lake Champlain

FISHING LEAGUE WORLDWIDE

National Guard FLW College Fishing National Championship Blog: Day-two trends

National Guard FLW College Fishing National Championship Blog: Day-two trends
A packed crowd was on hand to witness the day-two weigh-in at the 2012 National Guard FLW College Fishing National Championship.

A change on the leaderboard and a few modifications on the water ushered out day two of the National Guard FLW College Fishing National Championship. Tomorrow is sure to be an exciting day in tournament fishing, as the field is cut to the top five and the $100,000 top prize is put on the line.

The Auburn team of brothers Jordan and Matt Lee has a healthy lead, but anything is possible in championship bass fishing.

Here's what we saw on the water today, and how it might impact the final round tomorrow:

Docks - The college crew fished docks yesterday, too, but today I saw much more dock fishing from the field. The drop-shot seemed to be a popular choice among the dock anglers I saw. Other dock lures included soft jerkbaits and crankbaits. Several anglers the last two days have reported seeing some big bass - potential tournament-changing big bass - hovering under docks, but they weren't able to get them in the boat. We'll see if anyone can hunt up a big limit of dock-dwelling bass tomorrow, when high temperatures are in the forecast and bass just might be looking for some shade to escape the heat.

Bed-fishing - When I wrote a pre-tournament forecast for FLW Bass Fishing magazine several months ago, Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi of Prosperity, S.C., told me the college championship would probably be a sight-fishing showdown. He likely would have been right had we experienced a normal winter. Instead, the unseasonably warm conditions sped up the spawn, and many of the competitors got their fill of sight-fishing several weeks ago during pre-practice prior to the off-limits period. Today, however, the day dawned with sunny skies and very little wind. Several teams caught bass from beds, and one team that failed to make the cut told me about 4- and 6-pounders they saw on beds but were unable to make bite. Perhaps we're seeing a late wave of spawners? Or maybe the conditions simply allowed teams to see the last few stragglers? Sight-fishing doesn't impress me as a tactic that could win this thing, but catching a big female still full of eggs could really change the outcome.

Finesse or power - Fishing was tough in the morning on day two. Many of the teams struggled and had to grind it out all day to stay on the fish and eventually put together a good basket. Yet, I was surprised how few anglers slowed down with a finesse offering to tempt fish into biting. Most stuck with their power-fishing tackle and relied on covering water and making frequent casts to hunt down bass. Tomorrow, we expect the lake to be busy with pleasure boaters and a 200-boat local tournament. Maybe sitting still and finessing fish will be another option to consider when many of the best spots are already being pressured.

The Lees - Brothers Jordan and Matt Lee of Auburn will take the lead into the final day, marking the third time in three years that Auburn has had a team qualify for the final round of the national championship. This duo has a unique chemistry on the water, surely a result of their relationship as brothers and a lot of time spent fishing together over the years. They've been the most consistent team thus far, and it shows in the standings. Lake Murray is capable of limits in excess of 20 pounds, so anything is possible, but right now I believe that if another team has a shot at winning, the Lee boys would have to slip. After watching them on the water today, I don't really see that happening. There's still a day of fishing left, so I won't disclose their patterns or locations, but I think they're on something steady and reliable enough to bring it home.

The big bite - I've mentioned it a couple of times already, but the one factor that could change everything on day three is a big bite - I'm talking a 6- or 7-pounder. We've seen some toads weighed in, but if a team can add a real chunk to an already solid limit, it might blow this thing open. They're out there. Most teams have seen them. Bass fishing fans have seen them in previous major tournaments held on Lake Murray. And with warm weather pushing blueback herring into the shallows to spawn (they spawn when the water is around 70 degrees; it's in the mid- to upper 60s right now), the big bass will be near the banks and on the feed. From what I've seen, most of the teams are fishing the shallows. Might somebody cross paths with a piggy? We'll see.

Tags: curtis-niedermier  blog  2012-04-13-lake-murray 

Reserve Your FLW Cup VIP Pass Now

Reserve Your FLW Cup VIP Pass Now

If you’re an FLW member, now is the time to start planning your trip to Hot Springs, Ark., for the 2019 FLW Cup Aug. 9-11. Act now to take advantage of special members-only VIP benefits by signing up for a special VIP pass. READ MORE »

Top 10 Baits from Sam Rayburn

Top 10 Baits from Sam Rayburn

Pros caught fish everywhere from in the middle of flooded jungles of brush to deep main-lake drops. The top finishers pretty much all power fished with soft plastics, crankbaits and frogs. READ MORE »

Top 10 Patterns from Sam Rayburn

Top 10 Patterns from Sam Rayburn

The top 10 fished a little of everything, but mostly stuck to areas within a few miles of the 147 bridge. READ MORE »

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 3

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 3

Kris Wilson did everything he could this morning to put away this tournament before anyone had a chance to make a run at him. The Montgomery, Texas, pro returned to the spot where he started the first two days and boxed up a pair of 5-pounders. The leader has camped on his spot basically all morning, and now we estimate he's culled up to about 18 pounds. Wilson came into today with a lead of more than 4 1/2 pounds over second-place pro Josh Bensema, and a much greater margin over everyone else, so that limit is huge and likely has him on course for a wire-to-wire victory in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury on Sam Rayburn Reservoir. READ MORE »

Co-angler Crown Goes to Freeman

Co-angler Crown Goes to Freeman

Three solid draws and three solid days of adjusting to different areas of the lake helped Arkansas co-angler Zack Freeman earn his second FLW win and his first at the Costa FLW Series level this week at the Sam Rayburn event, which is presented by Mercury. READ MORE »

Wilson Wins Big on Rayburn

Wilson Wins Big on Rayburn

Kris Wilson pounded out another big limit – 24 pounds, 1 ounce – to win the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury at Sam Rayburn Reservoir by a margin of 13 pounds, 15 ounces. His three-day total was 72-8.  READ MORE »

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 2

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 2

In terms of fish caught, tournament leader Kris Wilson had a tougher morning today than on day one. But a behemoth bass that will probably push the 8-pound mark has him in prime position to maintain his lead in the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury on Sam Rayburn Reservoir. READ MORE »

Sam Rayburn Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

Sam Rayburn Top 5 Patterns – Day 2

On the flip side, Josh Bensema, who’s 4 pounds, 10 ounces behind Wilson, thinks he might have found the kind of Sam Rayburn motherlode that could earn him a come-from-behind victory. And while most of the rest of the top 10 are well behind Wilson, several of them hinted at being on the trail of some truly mammoth bags. READ MORE »

Wilson Still in Control at Rayburn

Wilson Still in Control at Rayburn

A 9-plus-pound bass anchored Kris Wilson’s day-two limit to help him stay in the lead at the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury on Sam Rayburn Reservoir. Wilson weighed in 21 pounds, 12 ounces today to go with 26-11 yesterday. His 48-7 two-day total has Wilson 4 pounds, 10 ounces ahead of Josh Bensema and miles ahead of the rest of the top 10.   READ MORE »

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 1

Sam Rayburn Midday Update – Day 1

In today’s morning story, James Biggs made several predictions for the first day of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury on Sam Rayburn Reservoir. Based on what our media team saw this morning, Biggs’ predictions are basically spot on. Two-thirds of the field is fishing up shallow, and there aren't many big bass to speak of. READ MORE »

Let the Rayburn Catchfest Begin

Let the Rayburn Catchfest Begin

We’re five months later into the year now, and while the water level at Rayburn has fluctuated in the months since the Tour event, it’s still about 4 1/2 feet above full pool as anglers take to Big Sam for the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury. READ MORE »

Sam Rayburn Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Sam Rayburn Top 5 Patterns – Day 1

Montgomery, Texas, pro Kris Wilson caught a big-time stringer of more than 26 pounds to take the day-one lead at the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event presented by Mercury at Sam Rayburn. Wilson says he fished some of the flooded cover that’s lining Rayburn’s shorelines, but the bulk of his catch came from a series of offshore areas where bass are starting to pile up. The rest of the top five fished a mix of patterns, but their results indicate that the offshore pattern could wind up being the most consistent as the tournament goes on.  READ MORE »

Wilson Waylays 26 at Rayburn

Wilson Waylays 26 at Rayburn

The second stop of the Costa FLW Series Southwestern Division event on Sam Rayburn, which is presented by Mercury, has certainly lived up to expectations. Plenty of fish are out there to be caught, yet finding quality is the key to separating yourself from the pack. Kris Wilson of Montgomery, Texas certainly distanced himself after hauling in 26 pounds, 11 ounces to the Umphrey Family Pavilion stage. It may not be the Texas-sized bag Rayburn is known for, however, given the conditions it is absolutely impressive. Wilson will hold a 6-7 lead over Josh Bensema heading into Friday. READ MORE »

Riding the Roller Coaster

Riding the Roller Coaster

It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog, although it seems like the last one was just yesterday. This season has flown by, and I finally have some down time before the last stop on the FLW Tour at Lake Champlain. This Tour season has been full of ups and downs, and I’ve learned a lot. READ MORE »

Check-in Time: Josh Douglas

Check-in Time: Josh Douglas

From time to time, FLW checks in with its anglers to find out what they've been up to, what they're listening to, who they're following and where they're heading while out on the tournament trail. This week, we caught up with Josh Douglas.  READ MORE »

Bass Fishing's in the Blood for Swanson Brothers

Bass Fishing's in the Blood for Swanson Brothers

You could debate whether it’s nature or nurture that starts an angler toward success in tournament bass fishing. In the case of Thor and Mitchell Swanson, the answer is both.  READ MORE »

2019 BFL All-American Roster

2019 BFL All-American Roster

The 98 best boaters and co-anglers from FLW’s grassroots ranks will compete on the Potomac River May 30-June 1 in the 2019 T-H Marine FLW Bass Fishing League All-American presented by General Tire. READ MORE »

Korostetskyi Crowned Kayak Champ at Nickajack

Korostetskyi Crowned Kayak Champ at Nickajack

Bogdan Korostetskyi won the Dee Zee FLW/KBF Kayak Open presented by YakAttack at Nickajack Lake with a two-day total of 174.25 inches of largemouth bass. He caught his winning fish on a ChatterBait. READ MORE »

Korostetskyi Leads Kayak Open on Nickajack

Korostetskyi Leads Kayak Open on Nickajack

Bogdan Korostetskyi leads day one of the Dee Zee FLW/KBF Kayak Open presented by YakAttack at Nickajack Lake with a total catch of 92 1/2 inches. All of his fish were largemouth bass that he caught using aggressive baits on very precise spots. READ MORE »

Emergency Eye Surgery Derails Horton’s Cup Hopes

Emergency Eye Surgery Derails Horton’s Cup Hopes

On Thursday, for the first time in eight years as a pro and 25 years as a competitive bass angler, Jamie Horton won’t cross the weigh-in stage on a tournament day when he’d planned to compete. Instead, the Alabama pro will be back in his Centerville home recovering from emergency eye surgery to repair a severely detached and torn retina in his right eye.  READ MORE »