Tournament Director Hank Weldon talks about how the Carhartt College Wild Card presented by Bass Pro Shops is an unique last chance for many teams to make the Championship.
JP Kimbrough and Jared Rascoe of LSU Shreveport just landed their 5th keeper of the final day after being stuck on 2 fish since 8:30 a.m.
This three fish flurry has them back in the mix and probably a lock for the National Championship.
"WVU only has one more we need to get rid of at the moment, it's about a 13"-er. 9lbs or so right now."
Nolan Minor and Casey Lanier of West Virginia had never made a cast on the Coosa River prior to the Wild Card this week, but they had an idea of patterns to try based on their pre-tournament studying. The two anglers came across the Elite Series event on the Alabama River when a Edwin Evers took the title. After struggling to catch fish down the lake they noticed how Elite Series like Brent Chapman, Steve Kennedy and others were successful fishing current for spotted bass so they tried it in practice and did well.
It shows how young anglers like these two freshman try to soak up tactics and different ways of fishing even when they are over 600 miles from school.
West Virginia now has a limit as well as new found confidence in fishing rivers and current for spotted bass
At 9 a.m. it's tough to call how this day will pan out. The 1st place team of Josh Butts and Reid Connor of Wallace State had a 1-14 lead over 2nd place and they had a small limit 2 hours into the day. I would estimate it at 8 pounds.
Their nearest pursuers, Hunter Louden and Cully Scroggins of Bethel only have 2 fish in the boat so far and lost their biggest bite of the day. They have 4-5 pounds right now.
3rd place JP Kimbrough and Jared Rascoe of LSU Shreveport focused almost all of their gameplan and attention on largemouth which paid dividends on Thursday, but bit them on Friday. They abandoned their largemouth areas after no fish 2 1/2 hours into the day. They made a quick move and put two spotted bass in the livewell.
Nolan Minor and Casey Lanier of West Virginia sat in 4th place and were 4-2 off the lead. They have 3 fish at the moment and two that are solid enough to go to weigh-in with them.
Rounding out the Top 5 was Austin Mize and Parker Davis of North Alabama. They have roughly 8-9 pounds at the moment, but started the day 4-7 off the pace. They caught some fish shallow this morning on a swim jig before moving to their offshore spot.
"That's No. 5, need to cull some of these though."
2nd Place Bethel's spot on Day 3 of the 2017 Carhartt Bassmaster College Wild Card presented by Bass Pro Shops.
"Three in the box for WVU, one that needs to go before weigh-in, two that we wouldn't mind bringing in. River has dropped 5 feet since Wednesday, current has slacked off and the bite has completely changed."
Fish number 5 for IU! Time to start upgrading!
I made it up river to the base of the Logan Martin Dam where Hunter Louden and Cully Scroggins have done their damage this week.
We aren't right at the dam, but rather a few hundred yards away. They have two fish roughly 2 to 2 1/2 pounds a piece and just lost a 3+ pounder at the boat.
The current is swift up here, so much so that they have anchored to stay on their spot without burning up their trolling motor. The water level in this area seems to be rising at the moment according to Louden and Scroggins. On Day 1 the water was above the banks and rushing through the woods, but Day 2 it settled to roughly where it is right now.
There are 8 boats at the dam, but most are across from these Bethel teammates and aren't fishing anything close by.
When I left the leaders they had just filled their limit and culled slightly. Of their 5 they had 3 that were 12-13 inches so they have a small limit. Louden and Scroggins trailed by 1-14 coming into today and need another solid bag, possibly their best of the week.