RUSSELL COUNTY, Ky. — The 2020 Carhartt Bassmaster College Series presented by Bass Pro Shops regular season wraps up on Kentucky’s Lake Cumberland Oct. 1-3 and will serve as the final opportunity for college anglers from across the country to qualify for the 2020 National Championship held on the Harris Chain of Lakes, Florida, Oct. 29-31.
Bassmaster Elite Series pro Mike Huff, of Corbin, Ky., predicts Lake Cumberland’s bass could be in transition from summer to fall patterns during this college event. “That time of year, it is just tough unless you get some cool weather coming in,” he said.
“There will be a lot of different ways to catch largemouth,” Huff said. “The lake will be starting to drop and the fish will get on wood.”
College anglers finding dingier water in the backs of creeks can catch largemouth on buzzbaits or by flipping creature baits to the wood.
The pro claims keeper largemouth bass are plentiful at Cumberland. “There are a ton of 2-pounders in that lake,” he said. “It is full of fish.”
The lake also contains Kentucky-strain spotted bass up to 3 pounds and smallmouth bass, which have a 12-inch minimum-length limit. Huff believes largemouth bass will be the dominant catch during the tournament, but smallmouth could also be a factor.
Effective techniques for spotted bass during the tournament will be drop shotting in brushpiles or jigging spoons under docks. One of Huff’s favorite ways to catch smallmouth is by cutting a Berkley The General stickworm in half for his Ned rig that he works about 15 feet deep along rocky main-lake points and bluff walls.
The upper and lower ends of the lake should produce plenty of action during the college event. “The (Cumberland) river will probably be a big player just because probably the fish will be easier to catch there, but the team that can figure out the lower, clear end will probably win it just because of the bigger fish on down in that area,” Huff said.
“There are six or seven major creeks on the lower end that are all good, and they all have their moments,” Huff said. He predicts Beaver, Indian and Otter creeks will generate good largemouth fishing during the tournament.
Competition will start each day at 7 a.m. CT from Halcomb’s Landing in Jamestown. Weigh-ins will be held back at the ramp each day at 3 p.m. and livestreamed on Bassmaster.com. The full field will fish Days 1 and 2, and the Top 12 teams will compete on Championship Saturday.