How did you start in bass fishing and work your way to this point in your career?
When I was 12, my family moved out to the country (to Reeltown, Ala.). I had been in Auburn (Ala.) schools, so I was kind of a city boy. Out in the country, we had about 60 acres of land and about a 3-acre fishing pond stocked full of bass. I just got hooked. I’d go out there every day after school and fished till dark. Then I started fishing club tournaments; little pot tournaments as I got older. I bought my first boat when I was 18. It was a 1978 Stinger, and I bought it for $1,500. Then I got married and started coaching my girls in softball. When they reached the junior high level and I wasn’t coaching them anymore, I had some time and I went to a bracket tournament on Lake Jordan (Alabama in 2010). I think it was the first bracket tournament B.A.S.S. had. Russ Lane won it. I went as a spectator because I had fished that lake a lot. I followed the pros around and when I got back, I told my wife “I’m going to fish the Opens to see if I qualify.” The first year I tried (in 2011), I finished 49th, but the second year (2012), I qualified. I got into the Elite Series in 2013, and I’ve been at it ever since.