UPCOMING EVENT: PHOENIX BASS FISHING LEAGUE - 2020 - Lake Mitchell

Thrift, Dudley Join 2020 Bass Pro Tour

Thrift, Dudley Join 2020 Bass Pro Tour

Bryan Thrift and David Dudley will be joining the 2020 Major League Fishing (MLF) Bass Pro Tour.

Dudley joins the Bass Pro Tour following an exceptional 2019 as the FLW Tour Angler of the Year. Dudley, who has earned just over $4 million in his 25-year professional career ($3.8 million at FLW, which makes him the league’s all-time highest earner) – became the only angler in FLW history to win four AOY trophies when he finished the 2019 season with 1,250 points.

Dudley has accumulated 53 career Top 10s and nine tour-level wins. Two of those wins came on fisheries on which he will compete in the 2020 Bass Pro Tour: Lake Champlain and Lake Okeechobee.

2020 will mark his 26th year as a professional angler and he said the opportunity to push himself to new levels drove his decision to make the move.

“I’m motivated to start a new chapter and set new goals for myself on the Bass Pro Tour,” reflectes Dudley. “This format will present some new challenges and opportunities for me to grow as an angler; I will have to practice hard this winter to compete, which makes me both nervous and excited - feelings on which I thrive as a competitor.”

Thrift enters the Bass Pro Tour after what some consider to be the five most successful years for a professional bass angler. In 2019 he filled out his already impressive trophy case with one piece of hardware he was missing: the 2019 Forrest Wood Cup. That August win brought Thrift’s tour-level career win total to 12, boosted his list of Top 10s to 68 (the most in FLW history), and pushed him over the $3 million in career winnings.

Thrift has put together 25 Top 10s since 2013, including 18 Top 5s. He owns four wins on fisheries where he will compete on the 2020 Bass Pro Tour (Lake Champlain, Lake Okeechobee and Lake Eufaula x 2).

“Moving to the Bass Pro Tour is an exciting opportunity that I feel grateful to have earned,” says Thrift. “Featuring the top pros in the world and no entry fee, this is THE professional league, akin to other pro sports leagues like NFL and Major League Baseball; those athletes don’t pay entry fees. I’m excited and nervous to see what I can accomplish on the (MLF) Bass Pro Tour.”

Gerald Swindle resigned his position on the Bass Pro Tour in an effort to take a different direction and focus his time on his family. “I’m looking forward to finding personal happiness as I compete with my nephew at the beginning of his career,” comments Swindle. “It’s a promise that I made to my brother and I’m grateful to have the opportunity to spend this last quarter of my career fulfilling that promise.”

Brandon Palaniuk resigned from the Bass Pro Tour in hopes of pursuing lifelong career goals. “These types of decisions are never easy,” reflects Palaniuk. “I want to thank the entire MLF staff, boat officials, and especially the anglers for 2019. I have learned a ton about many things, mostly myself, and the reality is that I have some goals outside of the Bass Pro Tour.”

“On behalf of all the anglers on the Bass Pro Tour, we wish Gerald and Brandon great success in their careers,” comments Boyd Duckett, Board Chair of the MLF Anglers Association, the non-profit players association for Bass Pro Tour anglers. “Roster changes are commonplace in professional sports and bass fishing is no exception. We’re thrilled to welcome Bryan and David to our ranks and look forward to a competitive and exciting 2020 Bass Pro Tour.”

FLW Reschedules Tournament Dates

FLW Reschedules Tournament Dates

We are working diligently with our hosts and sponsors to reschedule all postponed tournaments and are pleased to announce new dates for all of the affected Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit and Toyota Series events as well as some Abu Garcia College Fishing presented by YETI and FLW High School Fishing presented by Favorite Fishing events. Rescheduled Phoenix Bass Fishing League presented by T-H Marine tournaments will be announced soon.  READ MORE »

The Rebirth of Spencer Shuffield

The Rebirth of Spencer Shuffield

Fall from grace stories are rarely told in the fishing world. Tournament pros come and go from year to year, some after having found a little success and some leaving the pro fishing world with little show for it. That’s the nature of a sport predicated on competing with the best of the best in a format that sometimes rewards chance. Often, hard work and skill aren’t enough to precipitate prolonged success. READ MORE »

How to Catch Tailrace Smallmouths

How to Catch Tailrace Smallmouths

The reservoirs strung along the Tennessee River are tremendous fisheries, but they perhaps don’t get as much shine for being smallmouth producers as they should. READ MORE »

FLW Classics – Week 1

FLW Classics – Week 1

This week’s shows cover everything from the first FLW Tour win for John Cox, to a Tour event on Okeechobee where three pros crossed the century mark and the second College Fishing National Championship. READ MORE »

Join Facebook Q&As with FLW Pros

Join Facebook Q&As with FLW Pros

With no tournament action taking place and most people staying in and around their homes to help slow the spread of COVID-19, folks are taking to the internet and social media more and more. Here at FLW, we’re using social media to help fans pass the time with some of the sport’s top fishing pros. READ MORE »

Nixon Eyeing Early June Return

Nixon Eyeing Early June Return

You couldn’t choose just one word to describe Larry Nixon’s professional fishing career. But right now, if you had to try, the most applicable word might be “resiliency.” READ MORE »

Berkley Announces Fish Through It Challenge

Berkley Announces Fish Through It Challenge

While tournament fishing may be on hold for a bit, that doesn’t mean you can’t be stocking up on tackle. What better way to load your tackle box than with free tackle! That’s where Berkley’s  Fish Through It Challenge comes into play. READ MORE »

FLW Reschedules Events Through May 3

FLW Reschedules Events Through May 3

This unprecedented action, taken out of an abundance of caution and continued uncertainty of venue availability, will help protect the health and welfare of our anglers, staff, fans, sponsors and host communities.  READ MORE »

Lake Martin on YouTube

Lake Martin on YouTube

The third stop of the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit season on Lake Martin was filled with fish catches. Many of the pros documented individual fish, the entire tournament or produced recaps for YouTube. READ MORE »

10 Pro Circuit Highlights So Far

10 Pro Circuit Highlights So Far

We’re almost halfway through the 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit schedule, which means we’re far enough along now for a little retrospective on what’s happened thus far. READ MORE »

Sight-Fishing with Swimbaits

Sight-Fishing with Swimbaits

Ron Nelson, the Pro Circuit Angler of the Year leader and a renowned sight-fisherman, used a Keitech Swing Impact FAT for blind-fishing and sight-fishing at Martin and earned a runner-up finish. California’s Kevin Hugo took seventh at Lake Havasu and caught some of his biggest bass sight-fishing with a Little Creeper All American Trash Fish or Sunfish. Though the reasons why they settled on swimbaits varied, both pros can offer valuable lessons for any angler tackling a spawning scenario. READ MORE »

AOY Update: Lake Martin

AOY Update: Lake Martin

Through three events of the 2020 Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit, second-year pro and 2019 Polaris Rookie of the Year Ron Nelson remains atop the Angler of the Year standings after a second-place finish at Lake Martin. READ MORE »

FLW Postpones Events Through April 5

FLW Postpones Events Through April 5

Out of an abundance of caution and the uncertainty of venue availability amid rapidly evolving restrictions, however, FLW will reschedule all tournaments through April 5, except for the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit event on Lake Martin in Alexander City, Alabama, for which practice has already begun and extra precautions have been instituted.  READ MORE »

FLW Postpones College and High School Events

FLW Postpones College and High School Events

FLW, the world’s largest tournament fishing organization, announced today the cancellation and postponement of multiple Abu Garcia College Fishing presented by YETI and High School Fishing presented by Favorite Fishing events due to travel restrictions implemented by universities and high schools nationwide in response to the coronavirus pandemic. READ MORE »

MLF, FLW Suspend Public Gatherings

MLF, FLW Suspend Public Gatherings

Major League Fishing and FLW announced the suspension of all public gatherings associated with their events through April 12, 2020 in response to the coronavirus pandemic. READ MORE »

ETBU Gets School of the Year Rings

ETBU Gets School of the Year Rings

Tallying up 1,752 points for the season, ETBU beat out Tarleton State-Stephenville by 16 points to earn the Southern Conference School of the Year title. READ MORE »

Bank Battle Set for Lake of the Ozarks

Bank Battle Set for Lake of the Ozarks

When it comes to prespawn in the Ozarks, there may not be a better place to catch a giant bag of bass in the spring than on Lake of the Ozarks. And though the weather has been a little up and down over the last several weeks, things are setting up for a solid start to the Toyota Series Plains Division season March 26-28. READ MORE »

Wheeler Should Produce Mega Mixed Bags in March

Wheeler Should Produce Mega Mixed Bags in March

If you love mixed bags of big largemouth and smallmouth bass (and who doesn’t?), you’re going to want to pay close attention to the Toyota Series Southeastern Division opener on Wheeler Lake March 26-28. Local pro Sam George, who fishes the Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit, expects to see mid-20-pound limits cross the weigh-in stage, and predicts the winner will almost certainly weigh both green and brown fish. READ MORE »

Big Weights Headline FLW South Africa Event

Big Weights Headline FLW South Africa Event

With 38.03 pounds, the duo of Robbie Olivier and Neels Beneke of Team Gamakatsu Outdoors 365 took home the hardware in the FLW South Africa KZN Region Cast-for-Cash tournament on Feb. 20. Their five-fish limit was more than 12 pounds heavier than the second-place stringer (25.39 pounds) weighed in by Marc Meyer and Oliver Field of Team Stoner Farm. READ MORE »

Georgia to Sanction Fishing as High School Sport

Georgia to Sanction Fishing as High School Sport

FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, The Bass Federation (TBF), the nation’s largest grassroots fishing organization, and the Georgia High School Association (GHSA), announced today that Georgia has become the fifth state to partner with FLW and TBF in offering bass fishing as a sanctioned high school sport starting with the 2020-2021 school year. READ MORE »