2013 Carhartt College Series Bassmaster Classic Bracket
Grand River - Muskegon, MI, Sep 27 - 29, 2013

Jordan Lee's Classic destiny

Seigo Saito
Eight months later came the Regional Championship in the fall of 2010. Again we had to finish in the top 5. We finished 3rd and advanced to the National Championship where we placed 3rd again, missing a spot in the Forrest Wood Cup by a mere 2 pounds. That close call marked the end of my college career and was only the first step of Jordan Lee’s.

As our partnership wound down, Jordan had started another with a young power fisherman from Dothan, Ala., in the summer of 2010. Shane Powell had joined the club at Auburn and become good friends with Jordan. Jordan and Shane asserted themselves early, finishing 7th in one of their first turns at bats as a team in the 2010 Bassmaster College Series National Championship.

In 2011, Jordan and Shane finished an agonizing 2nd place to Stephen F. Austin in the Bassmaster College Series National Championship. Per the format at the time, the two members of the winning team had a head to head fish-off for the inaugural Bassmaster Classic berth, the first Classic Berth ever awarded to an angler from the college ranks. But as fate would have it, it was not their time.  

The Carhartt College Series season of 2012 saw a brief interlude in the Lee/Powell dynamic. Only one thing could come between a bond so strongly forged on water – blood. Jordan’s older brother, Matt Lee, had transferred to Auburn University to join the Auburn Bass Fishing Team and take part in what was happening there. And, as anyone could understand, the Lee brothers wanted to give it a go as teammates.

What Peyton and Eli were to college football, Jordan and Matt would inevitably become to the sport of college bass fishing. The two brothers made their way to the Carhartt College Series National Championship where Auburn came up just short of a national title once again, finishing 2nd by a little more than 2 pounds.

However, there was no time to hang their heads or any real reason just yet. Even though it would be another year before Jordan and Matt could contend for the national title again, there was something as sweet if not sweeter still at stake. This year, the top 4 teams had a shot at the Bassmaster Classic berth. In the course of the next two days, eight anglers competed as individuals in a single elimination bracket; and when the dust finally settled, Jordan and Matt were the last two standing.

In what had to be one of the most gut wrenching competitions in college sports history, brother was pitted against brother for the Classic berth. Each knew that they would have to break the other’s heart in order to achieve their dream. In order for there to be winners, there have to be losers. And that is a terrible thing.