SPRINGFIELD, Mo.  – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Making sure the many lakes and reservoirs in the U.S. and Canada where anglers pursue bass are healthy and vibrant relies a great deal on the efforts from federal, state, and provincial fishery management professionals. To assure those efforts are supported, and to provide financial resources for high school and college bass anglers looking to pursue careers in the fishery management field, the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame Board is instituting a college scholarship program for students seeking a degree in a natural resource field with an end goal of becoming a practicing fishery manager.

Up to $15,000 will be awarded in July 2023 to the selected applicants. Applications for the scholarship are now being accepted at

               “Within many fishery management agencies, there is a definitive need to fill vacant positions with qualified individuals who understand and have a passion for both the sport of bass fishing and the science needed to manage those fisheries,” said BFHOF Board president John Mazurkiewicz. “Spearheaded by Gene Gilliland, Casey Shedd, and our Conservation Committee, this new scholarship program fits in ideally with the Hall’s mission of celebrating, promoting, and preserving the sport by supporting those whose future career path will focus on healthy fisheries, needed access, and clean rivers, lakes and reservoirs.”

               Gilliland notes that scholarship applicants must be a high school senior who has committed to enroll or be an undergraduate and graduate student currently enrolled in a four-year college, university, or accredited graduate program. They must declare or have declared a major in biology, aquatic ecology, fisheries, marine science, or a closely related natural resources field. “We’re also asking every applicant to submit a short essay explaining their goals for a career in natural resources and to describe their dream agency job, along with proof of membership in a recognized bass fishing organization or provide a copy of a valid fishing license,” said Gilliland.

               The BFHOF Fishery Management Scholarship Program form outlines all the application requirements. Gilliland also mentioned all applications will be reviewed by an independent panel that includes individuals involved in fishery management issues in both the U.S. and Canada, including Phil Morlock, Director of Government Affairs with the Canadian Sportfishing Industry Association; Chris Horton, Senior Director of Fisheries Policy with the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation; Ross Self, Chief of Inland Fisheries for the South Carolina DNR; and Dr. Mark Rogers, Tennessee Cooperative Fishery Research Unit Leader at Tennessee Tech University.  

The application deadline is May 31, 2023 and the scholarship winners are notified by early July. For student financial aid requirements, the monetary award from the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame is considered a stipend for use by the student for any school-related expenses.

               For more information on the BFHOF Fishery Management Scholarship program, visit


Boswell and Thayer Win Georgia High School Championship at West Point

Early spring is always an exciting time in fishing, as fish begin to move around and begin their annual journey up to the shallows to spawn.  As usual for this time of the year, the fish are in several different depth locations and will bite a wide variety of lures.  This past weekend was no different.  Out of the ninety teams that came to West Point Lake for the Student Angler Federation (SAF) Georgia High School State Championship, when they weighed their fish, they reported several different baits that were producing some really good limits.  Many anglers were using Drop Shots, Ned Rigs and Carolina Rigs and were fishing out of the deeper points and channel swings to catch their fish anywhere from fifteen to fifty feet of water.  Yet many others were simply power fishing with chatterbaits, spinnerbaits jigs and worms working their way down the bank in one to three feet of water.  The other group was in between those groups and they were using crankbaits, buzzbaits and rattletraps to catch fish in six to eighteen feet of water.  There was 586 pounds of fish weighed in with a whopping fifty teams bringing a limit to the scales.  The Lew’s Reel Big Bass award went to the Gilmer High School team of Bryce Barclay and Haden West for their nice 5-pound 11-ounce lunker.  They received two new Lew’s Reels for their efforts.

Taking home the title of Georgia State Champions was the Winder-Barrow team of Brett Boswell and Dylan Thayer with a nice sack that weighed 14-10 pounds.  The Big Bass team of Bryce Barclay and Haden West finished second with a total weight of 13-15 pounds.  Haralson County Rebels team of Dalton Tilley and Ethan Carter managed a top three finish with 12-14 pounds.  Branton Champions and Jackson Behringer from Richmond Hill finished fourth with a good catch of 12-10 pounds.  Rounding out the top five spots was the Newnan Cougar team of Gage Smith and Tayson Harrison with a good limit weighing 12-06 pounds.  Congratulations to all the teams this weekend, we had a great event.

For full results from this event CLICK HERE

Photos from the SAF GA High School event at West Point can be found by CLICKING HERE

Short and Greenwood Win SC High School State Championship on Lake Hartwell

Mother Nature greeted the Student Angler Federation (SAF) South Carolina High School Anglers with some below average temperatures for the morning take-off at Lake Hartwell.  With temps hovering around the freezing mark, anglers were still excited to get out on the water in search of the winning bag of fish.  Even with the colder temps, the fish were very cooperative.  Twenty teams came to the scales with a limit and another thirteen teams brought at least one or more fish to the scales that afternoon.

The Devil Dog Angler team of Austin Short and Jacob Greenwood caught 17-07 pounds which was just enough to take home the win and the two nice first place trophies.  Bryson Holland and Jacob Stone from the North Augusta Fishing team finished second with 15-14 pounds.  The Crescent Tiger team of Landen Jordan and Joshua McGuffin finished third with 14-07 pounds.  Ounces behind them, in fourth was the Wrenn Fishing Team of Jake McGaney and Clayton Nix with 13-15 pounds. Caden Barnett and Chloe Barnett of the Crescent Tigers finished fifth with 12-15 ponds.

The biggest bass of the day was caught by the winners, Austin Short and Jacob Greenwood for a stud 7-01 lunker.  They received a pair of Lew’s Reels for their catch.  Anglers were catching fish in a variety of methods at this event.  Several teams reported that they were fishing anywhere from 35-60 foot deep, with Drop Shots, Ned Rigs, Swim Jigs and Under Spins.  Yet other teams were catching their fish more around the 5-10’ range around points and docks on spinnerbaits, crankbaits And Texas Rigged plastics.   Several of the teams said that they were catching as many as fifteen to twenty keepers during the day.

Full results can be seen by clicking HERE

Photos from Hartwell can be seen HERE