Watch out for Tharp today

You’d think Randall Tharp would have been one big smile after catching 20-11 Friday and moving up from 59th to 6th. But he confessed some leftover anger from Day 1.

“I’m mad at myself,” Tharp said. “I expected to catch ‘em like this yesterday. I had a good idea of how I wanted to fish before practice started. Then I got 15 bites in the first hour of practice. I stayed away from it the next two days of practice, just to try to find something different.”

Tharp spent a few days on Tennessee’s Norris Lake before practice began Monday at Cherokee. Nothing fishes quite like Cherokee, but Ott DeFoe advised Tharp that Norris was the closest thing to it. Tharp also wanted to break in a new boat.

Tharp found a pattern at Norris that led to those 15 bites in the first hour of practice at Cherokee. But on Day 1 at Cherokee, the water clarity had diminished considerably in his area. He figured out where to fish by the end of the day, which is why he rocketed up the standings with a full day to do it on Friday.

“Nothing really clicked yesterday,” Tharp said. “A lot of my stuff was blown out. Today I just stayed in a section of the lake that had the right water.”

Keep an eye on Tharp today. He weighed all largemouth bass Friday, including a 5-5, the big bass of the tournament so far.

“I think these fish are moving up,” Tharp said. “They’re wanting to go spawn. You can look at the bellies on the ones I caught (Friday) and see what’s going on. They’re coming.”