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  • Mike Entile of Aurora, IL writes:

    RE: Co-angler sounds off – Well-expressed and I totally agree with everything stated. I've been a B.A.S.S. marshal on one occasion and and a co-angler in numerous B.A.S.S. and FLW events. The difference between active participation and passive observation is the difference of night and day. Dealing with a long and rough boat ride in foul weather only to keep your seat while the pro fishes is for chumps.

  • George Myers of Raleigh, NC writes:

    RE: Co-angler sounds off – This was very well-written and thought out based on true experience. I have done both boater and co-angler and see both sides, but will say the FLW Tour co-angler was the best of the best, so kudos to FLW for lasting as long as it did!

  • Skip Bennett of Texico, IL writes:

    RE: No more Tour co-anglers – The elimination of co-anglers is not really surprising. In the years past it was a worthwhile adventure – you could fish 3 or 4 days with great people and learn a lot, but lately only being able to fish 2 days was financially not attractive. This will definitely expedite the long weigh-ins and I doubt they will fill half the marshal positions.

  • Mike Smith of Forest City, AR writes:

    RE: No more Tour co-anglers – Another step backwards for FLW. True, the co-angler trail to fish as a boater has faded, but the real benefits are for the sponsor of the boater. For years I competed as a co-angler with B.A.S.S. and supported the sponsors, as did many of my friends in our very large clubs. When B.A.S.S. cut the program, I and many other anglers lost interest. Co-anglers are a great way to show your products.

  • Tom Horner of Cortland, NY writes:

    No more co-anglers? What corporate schmuck came up with idea? Now they're "marshals." As my grandfather used to say, "Do not (pee) down my back and tell me it's raining." You've lost a fan.

  • Manny Lenau of Vass, NC writes:

    Fantastic move by FLW to eliminate co-anglers at the Tour level. I’m a big fan of co-anglers in tournaments that I fish. However, the professional level is not the place for a co-angler program.

  • John A. Argese of Taylors, SC writes:

    RE: VanDam's MLF prowess – Does this mean we're finally allowed to consider MLF as a legitimate tournament organization?

  • Rob Dixon of Lewistown, PA writes:

    Gatorade, sugar-free Red Bull, Adrafinil and some L-Dopa will give anyone a competitive edge during a tournament. All legal and capable of turning a lazy slug into an energized, focused and clear-headed angler. Trust me, it will totally change your tournament fishing and potentially your entire life.

  • Sammy Crouch of Gilbert, SC writes:

    I was a captain teaching Army ROTC at Clemson University from 1977-1980 and fishing bass tournaments in South Carolina and Georgia. I left for Germany in 1981 and had not heard of Zoom. When I got back in '84, Zoom lizards were the hot bait, but they were not national at the time. I was stationed at Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo. and fishing Lake of the Ozarks. I ordered them by the hundred bags for my fishing friends. I can't believe you didn't list lizards among the favorites.

  • Allan Bridgford Jr. of Chicago,IL writes:

    RE: Balog on Cup qualification – Another insightful article from Joe. Thirteen anglers with no FLW Tour experience qualify for the Cup? Pure ignorance.

  • Mark Allard of Sioux City, SD writes:

    RE: Lake Oahe Elite Series – Great read, most of these fish have never seen a lure. Great places, great faces and great smallmouth fishing.

  • Jon Storm of Fredonia, NY writes:

    RE: Balog on yoga – I'm with you, Joe. After a heart attack at a young age, yoga centered me enough to make the changes I needed and my body and spirit feel 20 years younger. It's amazing what 20 minutes with your head below your heart can do for blood flow.

  • Kensyl Reading of Davenport, IA writes:

    RE: Favorite Zoom bait – The Zoom Brush Hog was one the first Texas-rigged bottom baits, better known today as a “creature” bait.

  • Joe Balog of DeLand, FL writes:

    John Gaulke, thanks for your great contribution. I, too, read much of Sarno's works, which allowed me to open my mind to the idea of self-help for back pain. That path then led me to yoga, which changed my life. Your insight is great.

  • Mike Brown of McCormick, SC writes:

    RE: MLF World Championship – Such a disappointment that this is on CBS Sports. It is not available in my area.

    BassFan says: Re-runs are on CBS Sports, but the premiere of each episode is on CBS Network.

  • John Gaulke of Ithaca, NY writes:

    RE: Balog on yoga – The biggest mistake the medical community has made over the past century has been to dismiss the power of the mind over the body. Freud was onto something. Yoga is helpful, but not the cure-all. Dr. John Sarno was a very astute man who noticed some interesting connections/coincidences regarding pain issues. For example, the average person plagued with chronic back pain can often suffer from neck pain, shoulder pain, gastro-intestinal issues, allergies, skin disorders, migraines and a host of other ailments. Psychologically, all these ailments serve the same purpose - they distract the person from thoughts and emotions seen by the subconscious as threatening. Check out Sarno's Wiki page and check out the Congressional hearings on the back epidemic in this country. Buy any of Sarno's books – you can get them cheap, and read his findings and theories with an open mind. Mild oxygen deprivation caused by constricting capillaries can produce incredible pain. Thus, exercise like yoga and other forms of physical activity can alleviate the pain. Yoga helps, but doesn't explain the whys and hows. Sarno's books do.

    Break your femur, the largest bone in your body, and reset it properly and you can be completely healed in 6 weeks. Yet there are people suffering from lifelong back pain due to an accident or event 20 years prior. It makes no sense. Back surgeries often don't work. If they do, the sufferer often develops a new ailment – like carpal tunnel syndrome – 6 months later. Regarding that, people typed away on manual typewriters for 100 years. They've done repetitive motion on musical instruments for hundreds of years – no incidence of carpal tunnel until the 1980s that I'd ever heard of. Flash forward 20 years and it's an epidemic.

    If you're a skeptic you may not buy into any of this, but you have nothing to lose by reading the book(s) and keeping an open mind. Sarno has treated thousands of people successfully. His work has made my life immeasurably better.

  • Harry Ervin of Baldwin, FL writes:

    RE: Balog on yoga – Always enjoy Joe's articles. Might check out yoga myself.

  • Allan Bridgford Jr. of Chicago, IL writes:

    Greatest athlete of the 21st century? Tiger? Federer? How about KVD.? With all the variables a pro angler faces. The world needs to hear this story.

  • Richard Downey of Tucson, AZ writes:

    RE: Favorite Zoom bait – First time ever using a Speed Worm, I won two tournaments in 2 weeks. I threw nothing but the Speed Worm in both tournaments.

  • Randall Verran of Jackson, NH writes:

    RE: Balog on the sport's future – I like this article because I am a small-boat fisherman, as in kayaks, canoes and other boats powered by trolling motors. I relate to not having technology on my side, other than a depthfinder that I use to essentially just show the bottom contour and depth. I go to many small and medium-sized lakes. I have my fair share of mediocre days but I firmly believe what you learn without technology enhances your instincts. What I have found for me that works is to explore with your bait in the water, whatever you think doesn't hold a bass, fish it to be sure. There are golden nuggets (spots) everywhere to be found, some are virtually unknown to others and some consistently pay off on revisits.

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