If you know me or have read much of what I write on Bassmaster.com or in Bassmaster Magazine or B.A.S.S. Times, you know I think it's never too early to look at the Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year race and assess an angler's chances of winning AOY or qualifying for the Bassmaster Classic.
Yes, we're just three events in, but there's plenty of information to be reviewed and plenty of numbers to be crunched. The anglers who fish for AOY right from the beginning — the very first tournament of the season — are the ones who can actually win it, not the guys who don't.
And while I don't have a crystal ball and can't tell you who's going to win AOY this year, I can tell you this: he's currently ranked in the top 10.
How can I be so sure? It's because every other AOY in the Elite era has not only been in the top 10 at this stage of the season, but he was in the top eight ... and all but one were in the top five. Anybody further back than that has dug too deep a hole to climb out of and will have to set his sights on another goal this year.
That means our next AOY will be Edwin Evers, Terry Scroggins, Kevin VanDam, Ish Monroe, Jeff Kriet, Brandon Card, Gary Klein, Jason Williamson, Jason Christie or Bobby Lane. I'd put big money on that, too ... if I had it.
Only KVD and Klein have won before, and if either of them wins again, he'll become the oldest angler ever to do it. Williamson and Christie (a rookie) are the only two who have never finished in the top 25 of the AOY race. Card did it only last year, when he was a rookie. The rest have all posted multiple seasons in the top 25 of the AOY race. That kind of history and experience definitely helps.
More in a few minutes.