Student anglers compete, meet the pros at Card's annual open

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Bassmaster Elite Series pros Brandon Card and Chad Pipkens will co-host the Brandon Card College & High School Bass Open December 7 on Norris Lake.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The fourth annual Brandon Card College & High School Bass Open, hosted by Bassmaster Elite Series angler Brandon Card, will take place Saturday, Dec. 7 at Lonas Young Park on Norris Lake. This unique event features both a college and high school tournament, with each division competing at the same time for separate trophies, payouts and prizes.

Through the annual event, Card hopes to help grow sportfishing among student anglers. His own history and career path serves as motivation for building more grass-roots support for fishing.

“I fished for the University of Kentucky and was the first collegiate angler to qualify for the Elite Series,” Card said. “If we can push high school anglers along, they’ll be better when they get to the college ranks. And, the better they are at the college level, the better they’ll be in the Opens which will give them a better chance to move into the Elite Series.”

Joining Card to host the expected field of more than 300 student anglers is fellow Elite Series pro Chad Pipkens, who will serve as co-emcee of the event as well as a speaker at the registration dinner to be held Friday, Dec. 6 at Campbell County High School in Jacksboro, Tenn.

Highlighting the registration dinner is keynote speaker and Knoxville native Ott DeFoe, who won the 2019 Bassmaster Classic on the Tennessee River.

“Ott has a powerful testimony to share about how winning the Classic has impacted his life, and these student anglers will really enjoy hearing from him before the tournament starts,” said Card.

The first place collegiate team will win $2,500 while the top high school team will walk away with $1,500. A prize raffle caps-off the Saturday event.

“The presenting sponsors for this event are Suzuki, Navionics and the Campbell County Chamber of Commerce. There are a lot of other sponsors, too. I cannot say enough about their help and participation,” said Card. “Last year we were able to give away more than $20,000 in cash and prizes for the tournament payouts and prize raffles.”

The team event is $50 per boat. The high school weigh-in takes place at 2:30 p.m. ET from Lonas Young Park in La Follette with college weigh-in to follow at 3:30 pm. To sign up for the tournament, visit brandoncardbassopen.com.