Bethel on a roll

Brian Pahl and John Garrett of Bethel University joined their teammate Hunter Louden in the Top 3 after yesterday's weigh-in because of their 17-pound, 4-ounce bag on Day 1.

Today they have 3 fish so far and just landed their third when I pulled up and found them.

They desperately want to win the National Championship just like everyone else, but these anglers would probably be content with a Top 4 finish and a spot in the bracket. That is because the Classic Bracket is on Kentucky Lake, which is in their backyard and very few college teams may know Kentucky Lake as well as they do.

They only had 5 keeper bites on Day 1, two coming in the first two hours of the day, two more around 11 a.m. and then they filled their limit at the spot they are currently fishing right now.

Tough is a good word to describe Green River Lake right now, but tough doesn't mean bad by no means. There are big fish in this place and these teams showed it yesterday. Teams are focused in for 8 hours of fishing and 5 bites.

Video: Fishing solo

Hunter Louden fishing solo again on Day 2.


Is the Wild Card regional successful?

You tell me because after Day 1 it seems the proof is in the pudding. First, second and third place all punched their ticket to the National Championship via the last chance event at Lake Murray this year.

Last year we saw the team of Tyler Rivet and Allyson Marcel qualify at Lake Barkley in the Wild Card and they went on to make the Classic Bracket with a shot at the Bassmaster Classic.

College fishing is getting more and more popular across the country and that has ratcheted the competition up to another level. We saw over 200 teams compete in the Southern Regional at Lake Martin and close to 80 boats in almost every other regional as well.

This weeks winner will have earned it for sure because the 89 teams fishing this week have certainly put in the work.

Leaders add No. 2

The duo of Sam Stone and Evan Coleman of Texas State boated a hefty fish to give them No. 2. It was certainly over three pounds and was pretty close to four pounds. 
They have been bouncing around some of their deep spots and probing the area with a variety of baits so far. 

Day 1 leaders found

It didn't take us long to find the Day 1 leaders Sam Stone and Evan Coleman from Texas State as they went to work on Green River Lake.

They have a 2 and a half pounder to start their morning right now and have bounced around to three different spots since we found them.

At the weigh-in yesterday Stone and Coleman said they caught their four big ones before 9:30 a.m. and then they eventually caught a small keeper to pair with them.

Stone and Coleman qualified for the Carhartt Bassmaster College Series National Championship via the Wild Card on Lake Murray in Oklahoma.

Video: Day 2 launch


Louden heads back out

Hunter Louden of Bethel University surprised everyone -- himself included -- when his team of one caught 20 pounds, 6 ounces.

His only explanation is that he was blessed.

He's heading back out today with hopes of closing the 7-ounce gap between himself and the leaders, Sam Stone and Evan Coleman of Texas State.

Moving upward

Moving up is about the only direction possible for Ty Cox and Jake Houston of Itawamba Community College. The two weighed in 1 pound, 3 ounces yesterday -- oddly the exact same weight as the other Itawamba CC team. The two teams are tied for 67th place.

But Cox and Houston aren't complaining. In fact, it's quite the opposite.

"The first thing I said when I woke up this morning is, 'Hey, Jake, is it raining?', and he said no," Cox told me. "And I was like, good. We're good then."

Happy to be in comfortable weather this morning, the pair were in one of the first boats to take off.

DBU happy for a dry morning

After yesterday's punishing all-day rain, Trent Newman and Nathan Wood of Dallas Baptist University are thrilled to be dry for launch this morning.

"I don't care if it rains when we get to our spot," said Newman, "but I don't like it when we're first starting out."

"Yeah, it hurts when you're driving in it," added Wood, "hitting you in the face."

The pair are starting the day in 35th place with 5 pounds, 8 ounces. They have a lot of ground to make up to get in the Top 12 so they can fish tomorrow.