College teams to take on Lake Norman

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — When college fishing teams launch into competition at the April 12-13 Carhartt Bassmaster College Series tournament, they’ll compete on Lake Norman, located in Charlotte, N.C., a fishery known for its plentiful spotted bass. Norman also is quickly becoming known for trophy spots.

According to Hank Weldon, tournament manager of Carhartt Bassmaster College, “This is going to be a great tournament, and the people at Lake Norman are excited to host our college event. They’ve hosted several Bassmaster tournaments, and spring is the best time of year to fish Norman. I think these guys will have an opportunity to bring in some trophy bass.”

Weldon says he expects a full field of area college teams to take to the water for the Eastern Conference Regional. And those anglers will find Norman to be a gem — after all, it holds the state record for the largest spotted bass — a 6.97 lunker caught last February, displacing the previous record 6-5 catch.

While the fishery is renowned for bringing in lots of spots, Lake Norman has not always been so productive.

“The quality of Lake Norman’s fishery has come a long way from when it had the nickname ‘the Dead Sea’ in the early ’80s — the fishery has vastly improved,” said Travis Dancy, sports sales manager for Visit Lake Norman. “Among anglers and professional anglers in professional tournament arena, Lake Norman is known for (competitors) catching 20 to 30 spotted bass a day.”