How Pace missed 354 phone calls in one evening

When "Game Face" Cliff Pace was riding in the boat for his victory lap after he won the Bassmaster Classic, his cell phone was ringing off the hook.

With his big win, fame came calling. And when it did, Pace missed 354 calls, and his voicemail box quit taking messages.

The new notoriety has been overwhelming, for sure, but Pace is staying level-headed about it.

"I'm still me," he said today during the B.A.S.S. Twitter Chat, held in celebration of his victory, "and I'm going to stay me. I'm looking forward to showing the world who 'me' is."

Below is a transcript of the chat, lightly edited for spelling and clarity. You can also check out Twitter chat transcripts from other pros, including Mike IaconelliKevin VanDamAaron MartensBoyd DuckettJonathon VanDamTodd FairclothBrent ChapmanRandy HowellIsh MonroeBrandon PalaniukJeremy Starks and Alton Jones.

Keep up with Twitter chats, tournament news and bass fishing advice by following B.A.S.S. on Twitter at @BASS_Nation.

Bassmaster ‏@BASS_nation

Thank you, @CliffPaceFishin for joining us right after your big Classic win! Fans, we're ready for your questions!

 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thanks for joining in on the Twitter chat! I'm excited to be talking about my Classic experience and answer any of your questions!

 

Spotmonkey ‏@sptmnky

If you are looking for an apprentice or just someone to hang out with, please let me know! CONGRATS!

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thank you! 

 

Sammy Camut ‏@sammycamut

What's your five go to baits on a really tough day 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My five are @bayououtdoorsV&M football head jig, V&M flippin jig, Cyclone spinnerbait ... V&M trickster worm and a @jackall_incDD Cherry crankbait

Sammy Camut ‏@sammycamut

Sweet thanks!

 

TheShocker ‏@TheShocker1293

What was your go to lure?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

In the morning it was 1/2 ounce @bayououtdoorsV&M football head jig, afternoon it was a @Jackall_IncSquad Minnow

 

Everett Czarnota ‏@ECzarnota

How did you feel after ending day 3 with only 4 fish? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

After coming off the water, I felt like I missed something. I struggled the entire day and was disappointed.

 

kate dattilo ‏@kate_dattilo

Congratulations! You seemed really calm when you won, what were you actually thinking?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I was thinking nothing. I was truly in a trance, in shock from winning the Classic.

kate dattilo ‏@kate_dattilo

if you could change one thing you did while on the water those three days what would it be?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Catch 5 bass on the last day!

 

Owen Iseminger ‏@OwenATC

Cliff, what's your favorite creature bait and color 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My favorite is a @bayououtdoorsV&M slump hog. It's a new bait, and I like it in green pumpkin.

 

Jacob Foutz ‏@FoUtZy_87

What were you keying on to help you catch those better quality fish?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I was keying on my patience in areas that I knew had those fish in them, channel swings located off the main lake.

 

Brian Ottis ‏@BrianbVance

What is ur fave #bossfishingjig color?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I like a dark green pumpkin.

 

Rutgers U Bass Club ‏@RU_Bassfishing

Congrats on your classic win, Cliff! What were you keying in on throughout the tournament?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Channel swings located off the main lake.

 

Connor Edmonds ‏@bassinNC

Going into practice, how did you feel about your chances in the Classic?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I felt really good. I knew it was going to be a tougher tournament, but I knew the potential was there. I knew I was going to have to slow down and figure it out, and that fits my style well. 

 

hunter goad ‏@Hunter_Goad

What was the key to your success at the classic? What bait? #BassmasterClassic

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Persistence was the key. Doing what I knew I needed to do and staying focus was very important to get a quality bite.

 

Rutgers U Bass Club ‏@RU_Bassfishing

What were your thoughts on the last day after not catching a limit which was rare for you, since you had whacked them previously?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My goal was to leave the water knowing that I had it, and instead I knew I had left the door open to not win it.

 

Jim Scott ‏@MuddyBass79

What were the steps you took in deciding your starting pattern on Grand?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Analyzing the water conditions the area had been having. It was warm then got really cold. That gave me a good idea about how the fish were going to be setting up.I marked places in December and started running different types of water in practice. 

 

chris ‏@ditchell

When you heard Palaniuk’s weight were you sure you’d won?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

No, but I felt pretty good about it.

 

Rutgers U Bass Club ‏@RU_Bassfishing

How did you make the fish on grand lake react to your baits since the water temp was so cold? Was this the coldest you ever fished

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Not the coldest water temp I had ever fished, but definitely the coldest air temp. My trick was fishing incredibly slow.

 

Rutgers U Bass Club ‏@RU_Bassfishing

What made the final day much more challenging than the previous 2 days? Did your pattern change? What adjustments did you make?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My pattern did change. The wind was not blowing into the area I was fishing anymore.I had been sticking with a jerkbait, but the third day I couldn't make them bite. So, I had to switch baits.

 

Duane Bethke ‏@DuaneBethke

Did you ever get that panic feeling on Sunday?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Not really. I knew that that was the one thing that could prevent me from winning the tournament.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Congrats! Thanks for entertaining, showing us a higher level of Bassin & provoking us to think & open our minds.

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thanks, I really appreciate it! 

 

Fielding Brewbaker ‏@fieldingPGA

What was your best producing bait of the tournament?? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My best producing bait was split between the @bayououtdoorsV&M football head jig and the @jackall_incSquad Minnow.

Fielding Brewbaker ‏@fieldingPGA

Thank you! Congratulations! 

 

Andy Whitcomb ‏@andywhitcomb

First, thanks for interview Thurs. Really enjoyed the chat. 2nd, can I ask what you said to Palaniuk on stage? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I told him he was a great fisherman & he has a long, solid career in this sport, and I congratulated him for putting himself in position to win.

Andy Whitcomb ‏@andywhitcomb

Thanks! (And I think you are correct!) #Palaniuk#Great#Fisherman

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

How long we're you pausing the jerk and did it change thur the day and tourney?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Normally about 7 to 12 seconds, and I stuck with that throughout the entire event.

 

Jennifer Dome ‏@BhamJen

Congrats on your win! Do you & your wife have anything planned for your winnings? A vacation or new car, maybe?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

A vacation, maybe! If we get time, I'm going to leave it up to her!

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Did you do any modification to your jerks? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

No, it was typically just two jerks followed by a long pause.

 

Skye Riggleman ‏@Skye_Lines

Did the changing weather cause you to adjust your pattern? If so, How?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

It did on Day 3, made the jerkbait ineffective in the area I was fishing, had to resort back to the football head jig.

 

Duke Bevard ‏@mizmoman

What's the #1 tip you'd give for learning how to fish jerkbaits effectively 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Experiment with them! Get a @Lowrancefishinggraph & learn how to vary your line size & retrieve to put your bait close to the fish.

 

Ken Truffen ‏@KenTruffen

Cliff, ever fish Lake Erie and if yes what's you're go to lure/bait for summertime bass?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Yes, a substantial amount. My go-to technique and bait would be to drop shot a @Jackall_IncCross-Tail Shad.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Did you eliminate any section of the lake before even going there?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I did very quickly after practice. I knew my chances would be better in cleaner water in the lower half of the lake.

 

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

How did you get started fishing professionally?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I got to where I am now by competing in the Bassmaster Opens. I think it's the greatest step you can make because it makes you travel; that's important to fish the Elite Series. Just fishing around home doesn't teach you what you need to know to compete.

 

Frank J. Lillig ‏@_FishermanFrank

When did you start tournament fishing and how long did it take for your first tournament win?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

The first tournament I fished I was 12 and my first win was on the local level and I was 13 or 14.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

How mentally tough is it to fish with a small navy following you? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

It presents challenges, but when you hear the cheers when you catch a fish it makes it all worth it.

 

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

Was it hard to get sponsors to begin with?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Yes, it was. Our industry is wonderful but somewhat small. My advice to anyone looking for sponsors is go out there and worry about the fishing first and take the sponsorship as it comes.

 

Shawn C Carpenter ‏@1ShawnCarpenter

What has been the toughest body of water for you to fish? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I would have to say Old Hickory. I fished 3 events there and never made a check. There's something about me and that lake that don't mix.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Where a good place to go fishing if I come visit Mississippi? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

@jtflynlowI like the coastal region, all the small tributaries & Pearl River, plus it's a fun place to visit because of the casinos!

 

mark edwards ‏@wvbow_man

How much pressure were you feeling on the final day around noon, knowing you just need couple more bites to end it?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

It wasn't a matter of pressure, but of making the right decision. I felt the need to make a change.

 

Connor Edmonds ‏@bassinNC

What technique have you really dialed in on since being on the Elite Series?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I dial into a new one every week because we fish a diverse schedule. I work on ones I need help with during offseason.

 

Justin Dorroh ‏@justin_dorroh

How did you feel about basstrakk during the competition, as an angler?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I like it! It lets the fans interact with us on a more personal level; I'm all for it!

 

Brandon Palaniuk ‏@BrandonPalaniuk

Congrats @CliffPaceFishin! You earned this one man!

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thanks Brandon!

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Do you make a game plan and stick to it or feel it and do it?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I always start with a game plan but I've learned through my career when to get rid of it and do something else. The trick is knowing when to do that. 

 

Chris Wickliffe ‏@bassangler5

What day of practice did u know u had something figured out? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

The 2nd day. I got some key bites, not many, but it told me where the quality fish where. Grand is a pattern lake.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

1st bait caster?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Shimano Curado

 

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

Do you enjoy traveling so much? What's its ups and downs? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Traveling is great! You get to experience things that you would never get to do without it. The bad part is  missing my friends and family and things that go on at home. My friends in Mississippi threw me a party on the night I won the Classic and I wasn't even there for it!

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

Oh no!! I hope they threw another one when you got back too!!

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

Does your wife get to travel with you much?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My wife travels with me periodically. And I feel certain they'll throw me another party!

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Fave lure/way to catch bass?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My favorite lure and technique are what I caught my last fish on.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Fave angler in elites besides yourself?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Gary Klein. He's a dear friend of mine and someone who's helped me a lot in this sport.

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Fastest you have driven your Yamahammer?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I run an FX 20 with a 250 Yamaha SHO and I can run it about 78.5 mph. 

 

Brian Ottis ‏@BrianbVance

What type of trailer were u running on that jig

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

A 4-inch V&M twin tail, green pumpkin, and I used orange dye on the tips to add visibility

 

Garrett Paquette ‏@GPaquette_

How did you break down prefishing to locate/dial them in?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I started off by fishing various types of structure from main lake points to secondary points to channel swings. It's important to me in practice to try all that and see what produces best. You can take that pattern and reduce the size of the lake tremendously.

 

Adam Mahoney ‏@IceMahon11

What is a tip for somebody who is just starting to use top water (Buzz Baits and frog) and doesn't have success

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

You've got to learn when the fish get the bait before you set the hook. You can't react too fast.I try to focus on something else, so I don't watch it too much. Sometimes you're better off not paying close attention

 

Emily Hand ‏@ejhand

Congrats on your win! Are you enjoying your new nickname - game face Cliff Pace?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I like it! I hope it sticks. It truly does describe me when I'm in my boat, but not necessarily all the time.

 

Kelsey Kirkpatrick ‏@KelseyKayKay

Has there ever been a point for you where fishing competitively isn't enjoyable? If so why?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Yes, all the bad tournaments I've had!

 

JT ‏@jtflynlow

Yo good luck this season and I ll cheer for you at LaX WI! Go packers!

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Can't wait to see you there! 

 

Nikolas Mark Juras ‏@Aloha_Nik

Would it be worth putting braid with a leader on a spinning reel, or just use fluorocarbon with some backing?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I like to use all blade or all fluoro. I dont like the extra knots. I use 20 lb @hiseasofficial Grand Slam braid or 6-10 lb @hiseasofficial fluorocarbon.

Nikolas Mark Juras ‏@Aloha_Nik

Thanks man you rock! Congrats also

 

HI-SEAS ‏@HISEASofficial

How does it feel to be famous now? 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

It feels the same as it always has. I'm still me, but it will be nice to explain to people who "me" is.

 

Connor Edmonds ‏@bassinNC

With the spawn just around the corner, what is your favorite bed bait to throw?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Either a 6-inch @bayououtdoors V&M Lizard or a 3-inch @Jackall_Inc Cover Craw, depending on size or mood of the fish.

 

Angelo DiLorenzo ‏@MeanMouthBass

Congrats on the win. What was it like after you brought in that better bag on day #2?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

It was a huge sense of satisfaction.The Elite Series and #bassmasterclassic are my places of employment, so it always feels good to do well there.

 

Duke Bevard ‏@mizmoman

What's been your most cherished or memorable memory since winning the #bassmasterclassic?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

All of it! It's been a special gift to me. When I saw the weight come across the scales, I could finally take a breath.

 

Duane Bethke ‏@DuaneBethke

How do you feel about the last stop of the Elite series this year at Lake St.Clair #canyouSmallie?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I think it's gonna be great. It's a fantastic body of water from what I've heard and I'm really looking forward to it

 

Ryan Nutting ‏@RyanNutting

On behalf of @vtbasserWhat’s your favorite color (in general not baits). Also, are you a cat or dog person?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

My favorite color is green. I started off running green Skeeters, and this year my boat wrap includes green.

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

The first time I fished with it I won the #bassmasterclassic. And, I'm a dog person!

Ryan Nutting ‏@RyanNutting

Awesome Cliff thank you good luck this year!

 

BassFan.com ‏@BassFanNews

Having qualified for the '14 Classic already, will you change your approach at all this year?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I sincerely doubt it. I'm still going to fish the way I always have in my career & take it one tournament day at a time.

 

Brian Ottis ‏@BrianbVance

Thx for chat. We'll see u in Orange TX in two weeks. Good luck in '13!

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thanks so much! 

 

Cade Laufenberg ‏@CLaufe_Fishing

What was your favorite thing about the fishing in La Crosse, WI? Looking forward to coming back?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

I am! I like the fact that it's such a great fishery. Everyone in La Crosse should feel lucky they live so close!

Cade Laufenberg ‏@CLaufe_Fishing

Thanks man. Good luck to you. I do feel lucky to live so close! I'll be watching for you to do well here again this year.

 

Jason May ‏@jason_may1

What has been your biggest surprise so far as Classic champ that you did not expect?

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

The number of phone calls! When I got done with my victory lap, I had 354 missed calls!

 

Bassmaster ‏@BASS_nation

Thanks @CliffPaceFishin for spending time w/ your fans right after your victory. We look forward to watching you on tour this year

 

Cliff Pace ‏@CliffPaceFishin

Thank y'all for providing me with a platform and place to showcase my talents and a way to interact with the fans! 

Duane Bethke ‏@DuaneBethke

Thanks for reaching out to us fans this means a lot ;-)

Justin Deemer ‏@fisharooskiman

I missed it! Lunch with the wife, more important but, congrats Champ! An incredible title to have earned.

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