UPCOMING EVENT: ABU GARCIA COLLEGE FISHING - 2020 - Harris Chain of Lakes

The Importance of Having a Mentor

The Importance of Having a Mentor
Ryan Salzman

If you want a chance to have a pro as your personal coach and mentor for 2020, keep reading.

My name is Ryan Salzman. I’m an Army veteran, a full-time guide on the Tennessee River, owner of True Bass Swimbaits and now a professional angler on the FLW Pro Circuit.

Last year was my rookie season. I had a great year and learned a ton, and now I want to pass on my knowledge to you guys and gals. That’s why I’m going to be picking a high school angler to become my understudy for the year. Instructions on what to do if you want a chance at this mentorship opportunity will be at the end of the article. But first, I want to introduce myself to anyone that might not know me.

 

Learning to fish competitively

I was 5 years old when my uncle took me fishing for the first time. I had spikey blonde hair, denim overalls and a Snoopy rod. I can remember catching some bluegills from the bank. Ever since then I have been obsessed with catching fish.

I started out catching anything that swims, and quickly transitioned into solely wanting to catch bass. Since that first trip with my uncle, I’ve mostly been self-taught as an angler. In fact, other than being taught how to fish live bait, all my knowledge came from reading about bass fishing online. That was back when I had to wait for the beeps and boops while my computer connected to the internet (I feel old just writing that).

When I was 13, I was introduced to artificial lures by my stepdad, who mostly threw grubs for bass in streams. We lived in Chesterfield, Va., at the time, and we fished Swift Creek. Maybe this is when I fell in love with fishing a swimbait because that is basically what a grub is.

After being shown how to catch fish with that grub I instantly started researching to find other lures that might trick a bass. The pursuit hasn’t stopped, and now, 20 years later, I’m fishing the FLW Pro Circuit.

Throughout the process of learning to catch bass mostly on my own, I realized that my route to pro fishing wasn’t necessarily the easiest or the best. Figuring it out on your own is a challenge. Which is why I think it’s so important to have a great fishing mentor to guide you along the way.

You can see the results of good mentoring in high school and college fishing, which are raising the standard of excellence in the sport of fishing every year. Kids are getting more experience by the time they hit their early 20s than I had by the time I was 30. They can share a boat with a boat captain in a high school event to get one-on-one coaching on how to catch a fish that day.

That’s why I’m interested in mentoring a young angler this season. I want to contribute to the sport and help someone achieve their dreams.

 

Ryan Salzman

Competitive advantage

I believe that we all know there is a competitive advantage to those anglers with moms or dads who fish competitively versus the anglers who don’t have a parent that knows how to fish. And I know there are many young anglers who don’t have a direct influencer helping them become a better angler every day on the water.

This is where I believe that pro anglers can help out and give back to the high school fishing community. I hosted a high school fishing camp last year with True Bass Swimbaits on Guntersville, and that was the beginning of trying to gather a group of professional anglers to work one-on-one with high school anglers. It was a great event. Jordan Lee even showed up to help teach kids about fishing. How often do you get to go fishing with J-Lee for free? We are going to continue that in 2020 on Guntersville. Make sure to follow me on social media @albassguide_memelord for information on that event.

I’m also going to select one high school angler to be my direct understudy for the 2020 season. If you want to become a professional angler, work in the industry or eventually start a business in the fishing industry, this should be a great opportunity to learn valuable skills. I’m a full-time guide on Lake Guntersville, founded the UNA fishing team in 2008, own True Bass Swimbaits and have worked for many companies up to this point. I want to help set you on your path to accomplishing the goals you have for yourself. If you haven’t set those goals then we’re going to narrow down some options and get YOUR GAME PLAN in motion. We’re also going to be doing a blog together to share our experience as a coach and student to help others learn how to become a professional angler. We’ll even document our progress through my YouTube channel, Alabama Bass Guide. That means everyone can follow along and learn with us and engage with questions or comments.

 

In order to sign up to be chosen, I need you to complete only TWO STEPS.

I’m going to select the angler by March 1, 2020. Once you have registered and subscribed you are good to go.

I’m excited to get to work with one of you for the year, and hopefully continue this for years to come.

See you on the water!

Ryan “Salzy” Salzman

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Wiley X Teams with FLW

Wiley X Teams with FLW

FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, announced today a multi-year sponsorship agreement with Wiley X, one of the most trusted brands in the world for safety eyewear, high-performance sunglasses, and optical/protective sports eyewear for youth. Effective immediately, Wiley X becomes the official sunglass provider of FLW and assumes title sponsorship of the FLW High School Fishing Camp, the ultimate summer camp for serious high school anglers, their parents, boat captains and coaches. In addition to the High School Fishing Camp, Wiley X has also been named the presenting sponsor of the new Major League Fishing (MLF) College Faceoff events. READ MORE »

Dortch’s Flipping Setup

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After growing up on the Tensaw River in Alabama and spending much of his early fishing career in Florida, Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit pro Bradley Dortch naturally has a very good handle on flipping. Especially around matted cover, Dortch is quick to put a big stick into action, and his preferences fit him perfectly. If you’re looking for a new flipping plan, or maybe just thinking about tweaking around the edges, his advice could be applicable to you. READ MORE »

Co-angler Opportunities Expand in Toyota Series

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Abu Garcia Partners with FLW, MLF

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FLW and Major League Fishing (MLF) announced today a sponsorship agreement with Abu Garcia, a legendary fishing brand and industry-leading manufacturer known for its high-quality, innovative rods and reels. Abu Garcia will immediately assume title sponsorship of FLW College Fishing circuit. READ MORE »

Toyota Series: Best Value in Fishing

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For 2020, FLW has partnered with Toyota to roll out a completely revamped Triple-A league known as the Toyota Series, with many enhancements over the previous FLW Series that were requested by competitors. READ MORE »

Register Now for High School Camp

Register Now for High School Camp

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Toledo Bend Midday Update – Day 3

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The final day of the Toyota Series Southwestern Division event on Toledo Bend is an absolutely glorious one, in terms of weather. A light breeze and sunny skies greeted anglers for the first time all week, and while it may be pleasant to be outside in, it hasn’t done much to help the fishing. READ MORE »

Toledo Bend Midday Update – Day 2

Toledo Bend Midday Update – Day 2

It was another cloudy, cool morning to start day two of the Toyota Series Southwestern Division event on Toledo Bend. With water temperatures hovering around 52 degrees, the fish weren’t in much of a biting mood throughout much of the morning. READ MORE »

Fish BFL, Series for Chance to Win Polaris

Fish BFL, Series for Chance to Win Polaris

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Toledo Bend Midday Update – Day 1

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Day one of the Toyota Series Southwestern Division season opener on Toledo Bend has been about what the competitors figured it would be – a slow and steady grind. A misty rain and light fog greeted anglers at takeoff, followed by a decent wind out of the north bringing a chill to the air, which wasn’t exactly forecasted. READ MORE »

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With the addition of new divisions on the 2020 Toyota Series schedule, Florida anglers (and anyone else hoping for a full schedule of Florida fisheries) get a trio of Sunshine State staples on the docket this year, starting with the St. Johns River on February 13. READ MORE »

Toyota Sponsors MLF and FLW

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Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) announced today a formal sponsorship of Major League Fishing (MLF), professional bass fishing’s newest premier tournament organization, and home to Team Toyota professional anglers Mike Iaconelli, Terry Scroggins, Kevin VanDam, and Jacob Wheeler. The partnership includes Fishing League Worldwide (FLW), the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, as title sponsor of the Toyota Series. READ MORE »

Sharing Forrest Wood Stories

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In the few days since Forrest Wood passed away, thousands of people have taken to social media to share their favorite “Forrest Wood story” in public tribute to one of bass fishing’s most iconic men. In keeping with the trend, we reached out to people within the FLW family and the broader fishing industry and invited them to share a Forrest Wood story or two, or to reflect on what Forrest meant to them. READ MORE »

Forrest Wood’s Legacy

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Surrounded by his family, Forrest Wood passed away in a Mountain Home, Ark., hospital just after 9 a.m. Saturday, four days after suffering a heart attack in his home. Wood, who was 87 at the time of his death, was the founder of Ranger Boats of Flippin, Ark. A pioneer of bass tournament fishing, he helped launch the careers of hundreds of aspiring tournament anglers through sponsorships. During his 20-year span at the helm of the company he founded with his wife, Nina, Forrest is credited with laying the groundwork for the modern bass boat through his innovative designs and engineering advancements. READ MORE »

Forrest L. Wood, 1932-2020

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FLW is saddened to report that Forrest L. Wood, the namesake of our organization and a longtime member of the FLW family, passed away today at age 87. He spent his final days surrounded by his family, including his wife of 68 years, Nina. READ MORE »

Daniel Fennel to Direct Pro Circuit

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At the registration meeting for this week’s Pro Circuit season opener at Sam Rayburn Reservoir, FLW announced that Daniel had been promoted to senior director of tournament operations for the Pro Circuit, FLW Series and Phoenix Bass Fishing League, with responsibilities to include directing the Pro Circuit. Bill Taylor, who served as tournament director for the FLW Tour from 2001 through 2019, has been promoted to senior director of operations, where he’ll lend his expertise acquired through more than two decades as a tournament director toward logistics, angler relations and event planning for all FLW circuits. READ MORE »

2020 Pro Circuit Predictions

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The Tackle Warehouse Pro Circuit is at Sam Rayburn Reservoir in Brookeland, Texas, this week to kick off what promises to be another great season of professional bass fishing for FLW. In anticipation of great things to come during the inaugural Pro Circuit season, a few FLW staff members and one Pro Circuit pro decided to play pundit and make a few predictions.  READ MORE »

John Cox Making Most of Opportunities

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Tackle Warehouse Teams with FLW

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FLW, the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, announced today that it has reached a sponsorship agreement with Tackle Warehouse, the sport’s leading online retailer that offers the guaranteed lowest prices on bass fishing tackle from every top brand. Effective immediately, Tackle Warehouse becomes the official tackle retailer of FLW and assumes title sponsorship of the FLW Pro Circuit, professional bass fishing’s premier five-fish-limit tournament series. READ MORE »

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