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All Topics   September 2017
  • Martin D. Lamb of Albia, IA writes:

    Listening to Brandon Palaniuk's AOY speech Sunday, he orated the exact reason why I say the Opens need to be more accessible to the working Joe. He said he "did not have the time or money to fish the Opens", he was fortunate enough to run the gauntlet through the Federation and win the championship. Had that not happened, Brandon Palaniuk may very well still be fishing and logging in Idaho, chasing the dream. Just because a guy can't commit to five weeks vacation or throw out 6,000 bucks in entry fees doesn't mean he doesn't have the tools to be an Elite fisherman.

  • Mike Bennett of Columbia, SC writes:

    I laugh every time read a comment where someone complains or whines about an Elite or FLW Tour pro fishing a lower-tier tournament like the Opens. If they don't think they can compete with them, then stay home. It doesn't matter if KVD, Swindle, Skeet or any Elite angler is in the field if you can't catch fish. You are not competing against the anglers, you are competing against the fish. If you can't find and catch fish, don't blame it on something as lame as "Well, Ott DeFoe was in the tournament." Blame it on your lack of skills and confidence in yourself.

  • Carol Martens of West Hills, CA writes:

    RE: Teaming with Martens – Thats's my boy ... I love fishing with him because it's always an adventure.

  • Skip Bennett of Texico, IL writes:

    My opinion is that the some pros who fish the Opens should not be allowed to accept the perks that go along with the title. Example, DeFoe's already qualified for the Elites and the 2018 Classic. Now the only thing he accomplished was the top money spot and took the money from the aspiring working anglers who are trying for those champion benefits. Some pros, especially those who have been dropped by the Elites and those who did not make the Classic cut and FLW pros who want switch sides, should be allowed and not looked down upon for trying to advance. But in DeFoe's defense, he smoked the field against a lot of locals who've had many more days of practice, so they left the door open.

  • Gary Yexley of Knoxville, TB writes:

    RE: Teaming with Martens – Great article. I fished with him many many years ago on Lake Powell ... good memories. Thank you.

  • Steven Rockweiler of Luling, LA writes:

    The recent win for the Douglas Lake Open event brings back memories for me. Here on this expansive Delta, for decades, has been the use of "jump boats." What is a jump boat? These are aluminum boats, rigged with tunnel hulls and hydraulic jackplates, designed to run in inches of water and "jump" into isolated holes in the marsh. The Elite pros entering the Opens, have picked up in this idea, I see. The tournament was won out of a jump boat, and the fisherman in 2nd the first two days was also in a jump boat fishing up the river, until he damaged his lower unit.

    B.A.S.S. addressed this issue in the Elites, but I feel they need to also address this in the Opens. Many of the Elite pros, who have been successful, have the resources to invest in a "jump boat" ... they are not cheap. This, to me, is just another deal for the aspiring anglers who want to move up to overcome. If an angler wants to use an aluminum rig when he sees the schedule released for the Opens, then B.A.S.S. should have in their rules that the same type of boat must be used in all the Opens fished. So if a pro wants to use this rig in a certain tourney, they cannot unless they used it in all of the Opens they fished.

    I have some other dislikes on on jump boats from competing against them since 1970, but the list would fill this page.

  • Johnny McLean of Little Rock, AR writes:

    RE: Balog on Opens – You are probably right, Joe. Defoe winning yesterday surely does not encourage aspiring pros to take their chances on the Opens. I think that FLW and B.A.S.S. should work together to let the top guys fish both circuits if they choose. If you truly want the best against each other, then you need to provide the opportunity for them to compete.

  • John Hempel of Brownstown, MI writes:

    I still think that the Elites should not be allowed to fish the Opens. After all, I can't fish their Elite tournaments.

  • Rob Dixon of Lewistown, PA writes:

    RE: New Bassmaster Opens format – The Opens continue to become the playground of the rich who can try year after year to qualify for the Elites because there's only so many good fishermen who can blow 10 to 12 grand every year on fishing tournaments. I'd love to see a two-day series with a $500 or $600 entry come about to give people a legitimate chance to win their way up instead of having to spend 10 grand just to have a chance at making the Elite Series. The Opens are now full of rich kids and guys who have fished the Opens for years and still haven't made the Elite Series.

  • Paul Wallace of Cambridge City, IN writes:

    RE: Bassmaster Opens – When the "lucky" few earn their way into the Elites, they will be met with $70,000-ish of debt for their trouble. What a nice reward!

    The reason the Elite pros are fishing the Opens is simple – they need the money. The financial reward for average tour pros is so small, I can't figure out how they do it.

    As long as it's pay to play, I'm okay with anyone entering a tournament for money. B.A.S.S./FLW has a long way to go before they can truly be a professional sport. PGA, WTA, etc. ... pro bass fishermen need their own organization. Every real sport has one.

  • Paul Cinquegrano of Bellingham, WA writes:

    RE: Balog on Opens – I completely agree, Joe. To allow Elite Series anglers to fish in the Open series is unfair to the aspiring tour anglers. It does not do anything to grow the sport and could be seen as a deterrent to some. I personally would not appreciate fishing in an Open at the Big O, only to see Scott Martin, Greg Hackney, KVD, Skeet, Ike or any of the other Elite anglers at the ramp.

    I llike the new format and appreciate the fact that "cherry picking" tournaments is being addressed. I would like to see it take a step further and require all entrants to fish all four events (or at least pay the entry fees), maybe just for the boaters, anyway, as it seems sometimes co-anglers are in demand at certain venues. That would greatly reduce "local pro" entries and allow true aspiring tour anglers better opportunities. It may initially have lower turnouts, but I think in the long run it would better the sport's participation.

  • John A. Argese of Taylors, SC writes:

    RE: Balog on Opens – A "Eureka" moment while reading Joe's take. The phrase "working man" gets tossed around quite a bit, but if I'm not mistaken, wasn't the B.A.S.S. Federation, now Bass Nation, supposed to be the weekend angler's way into the Classic?

    The Opens were more like a triple-A circuit, if I understood correctly. As a "working man", you fished the Federation (B.A.S.S. Nation) circuit. If you fished well, EARNED SPONSORS (my caps), moved into the Opens and succeeded in the Opens, you went into the Elites. Wasn't that the path of Denny Brauer and Mike Iaconelli?

    It may take some time for people to get used to, but it's long overdue. Working men I know pay their dues.

  • Frank Tennity of Honeoye, NY writes:

    RE: Balog on Opens – Well written. The Elites should not have it both ways as tournament fishing goes. When they do not qualify for the Elite Series, drop back to the Opens and qualify for the Elites again.

  • Ronnie Shreve of Winston-Salem, N.C. writes:

    I was in my late 20s when I first ran across The Fishin' Hole and Jerry McKinnis and it immediately stuck to my heart because of the down-to-earth approach the program was so careful to take with McKinnis. I miss it and I miss just the pure, laid-back way Jerry shared his show with America. God bless those memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life as I approach my mid 60s. It is just not the same anymore because money has changed the dynamics of true down-to-earth fishing.

  • Ryan Bowman of Seneca, SC writes:

    RE: New Opens format – Prediction: Tournaments will not fill up and payouts will drop.

  • Riley Cooper of Bay Minette, AL writes:

    RE: Bass and saltwater – Largemouth are actually the most salt-tolerant of all the bass species. In the Mobile/Tensaw delta we often catch reds, speckled trout, flounder, and even jack crevalle with the bass. Salt content varies even day to day, especially with tidal flow. Largemouth tolerate these brackish areas feeding on blue and fiddler crabs and shrimp. A log with barnacles doesn't mean too much salt, so fish it anyway. Brackish delta water means excellent bass fishing with plenty of saltwater bonus fish.

All Topics   September 2017

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