The talk coming into this week's event was that Lake Champlain is full of 3- to 3 1/2-pound smallmouth, but 4-plus smallies are hard to find.
When I presented that theory to second-place angler Bryan Schmitt, he found the nicest way possible to say that's just not true.
In his slow, polite, Maryland drawl, Schmitt said "No sir" with a wry grin.
"I caught three of them today, and I don't even know what I'm doing," he said. "There are a lot more big smallmouth on this lake than big largemouth."
Though he caught a couple of decent largemouth Thursday, he said he planned to lean on the smallmouth heavily this week as he goes for his first Elite Series victory.
So far, so good. He's one bass away from a limit before 7:45 a.m. and in the unofficial lead on BASSTrakk.