University of Montevallo’s College Bass Fishing Team of seniors Jarrett Brown and Tyler Harless won the Alabama State Championship on Lake Eufaula on February 1, 2020, with the heaviest bag of bass – a five-bass limit – of 29.98 pounds. They also took home the Big Fish prize with an 8-pound largemouth.
“On the Friday practice day at Lake Eufaula, Tyler and I discovered a small clear-water place in a creek, although the water in the rest of the creek and the main lake were as muddy as chocolate milk,” Jarrett Brown explains. “We fished Carolina rigs with ZMan FattyZ worms (small 6-inch finesse worms) on 15-pound-test Seguar Red Label fluorocarbon line. I fished a watermelon red FattyZ, with a 7’2” Powell Power Max rod with a Lew’s 7.5:1 reel. Tyler fished the FattyZ in the Sprayed Grass color on a 7’3” heavy Duckett Ghost Rod with a 7.1:1 Lew’s Speed Spool reel.
“When Tyler made his first cast on practice day, he caught a 5-1/2 pounder. We released that bass, left the area and returned there on Saturday, the competition day. We used Lowrance’s HDS Carbon 12 and HDS Carbon 9 electronics. Once we discovered this clear water, our screens lit up - showing what appeared to be a ton of shad with some bigger fish mixed in with them.”
This win qualified Harless and Brown of the University of Montevallo’s Outdoor Scholars Program to compete in the Bassmaster College National Championship, one of three fishing circuits in which the university participates, in the summer of 2020.
The University of Montevallo’s Outdoor Scholars Program has been in existence for five years and currently has 60 students enrolled. The university has had a fishing program since 2005 with about 10 anglers competing then.
According to William Crawford, the director of the Outdoor Scholars Program at the University of Montevallo, “Mossy Oak’s sponsorship of this program is vital. The purpose of this program is to teach and train college students through school and practical experiences for the more than 300,000 job opportunities available in the out-of-doors.”