BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Academy Sports + Outdoors, one of the country’s leading retailers of hunting, fishing and outdoors equipment, has announced a partnership with B.A.S.S. that will help both organizations continue to grow the sport of fishing for years to come.
Academy will serve as the presenting sponsor for the Bassmaster High School Series, which has four regular-season events and a year-end national championship scheduled on lakes around the country this year. The tournaments, which are set for South Carolina, Alabama, Arkansas, California and Tennessee, are expected to draw thousands of young anglers who are just getting their start in competitive fishing.
The retail giant will also serve as the presenting sponsor for the popular Bassmaster All-American and All-State teams, which are being decided by judges based on nominations from around the country.
“We’re thrilled that the good people from Academy Sports + Outdoors have made this kind of commitment to our high school programs,” said B.A.S.S. Youth Director Hank Weldon. “Every one of the anglers who takes part in our High School Series gets to experience the thrill of competing at a very young age.
“Whether they become lifelong tournament anglers or not, they’re cultivating a love for the outdoors — and Academy Sports + Outdoors recognizes the incredible significance of that.”
With Mossy Oak Fishing as the title sponsor of the high school series, the first event of 2019 will be the Mossy Oak Fishing Bassmaster High School Eastern Open presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors. The tournament will take place Saturday on South Carolina’s famed Lake Hartwell with takeoff at 6:45 a.m. ET from Green Pond Landing in Anderson, S.C., and the weigh-in back at the same location at 2:45 p.m.
As part of their role as presenting sponsor, Academy held a special promotion at its store in Anderson this past Thursday. Anglers who were fishing the Eastern Open received a 20 percent discount on purchases — and when they presented their receipts at the tournament, they were entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card.
“We’re excited about our expanded partnership with B.A.S.S. and the ability to support youth anglers in their enjoyment of the outdoors,” said Lawrence Lobpries, Academy Sports + Outdoors’ Vice President of Marketing. "This sport is built around passion for the outdoors, and Academy’s strong assortment and value help anglers of all skill levels create fun experiences on the water.”
Similar promotions will be held at nearby Academy locations for other high school events, which will include March 30 on Alabama’s Lake Guntersville, April 28 on Norfork Lake in Mountain Home, Ark., and May 11 on California’s Lake Shasta. The annual Bassmaster High School National Championship is set for July on Kentucky Lake in Paris, Tenn.
Before each high school weigh-in a drawing will be held, and one team will receive a prime tailgate location near the stage with an Academy tent, cooler and other items they can use and take home.
Under the agreement, Academy will be a supporting sponsor of all Bassmaster Elite Series events, B.A.S.S. Nation events and the Bassmaster Team Championship. They will also serve as the title sponsor for the Bassmaster Elite Series tournament scheduled for June 21-24 on Lake Guntersville in Scottsboro, Ala.