School's in session
When bass start chasing baitfish on the surface, it can provide a quick way to fill the boat. Chasing schooling fish, however, can often lead to frustration because bass can miss the bait or pull off before getting to the boat.
What happened to David Rogers from the University of Alabama was even worse.
Rogers and his teammate Cameron Mitchell had pulled into the back of a slough when they saw some largemouth and spotted bass blowing up on shad.
"I threw a Red-Eye Shad into the middle of them and had a three-pounder hit it," said Rogers. "It jumped and went back down and when it came up again there was a little one on the other hook. Two on the same lure. I yelled at Cameron to get the net and before we got them to the boat the little one knocked the big one off."
Had the pair boated the bigger fish they likely would have finished in the top 10.
Left at the beach
Despite fishing by himself both days of the tournament, Dustin Gray of the University of Montevallo still managed to catch 8 pounds, 2 ounces on Friday, which was the third heaviest stringer weighed in on Day Two.
"My partner decided to skip town and go to the beach with his girlfriend," said Gray. "He'll get it when he gets back though."
Gray might have made the top six cut if it wasn't for some bad mojo that he experienced on the water during Thursday's competition.
"I had a couple of good bites yesterday, but I couldn't get them in the boat," said Gray. "I guess it's because I'm an Auburn fan and we're in Tuscaloosa, so it didn't work out."
The big picture
While much of the University of Alabama's bass team participated in this event, one of their biggest sticks chose to sit on the sidelines.
Jeff Aul, a past Under Armour College Bass Championship participant, chose to forego fishing on Lake Tuscaloosa and instead focused his hours practicing for Alabama's upcoming College Bass Qualifier, which will be held next weekend on the Warrior River.
"This is a great event put on by Woods & Water and the Crimson Tide Bass Anglers and I'm pretty familiar with this lake," said Aul. "But my main goal is to make the Championship."
Each school is required to hold team qualifiers in order to send its top two anglers to Little Rock, Ark., this July for the biggest event in college bass fishing. At this point in the year, Aul is holding the second spot for the championship and needs a good showing in the final qualifier so that he can represent Alabama this summer.
"I'm going to go out there [the Warrior River] Saturday from sunup to sundown," he said.