By 1974, bass clubs had been popping up all over the country as bass fishing became more popular. The clubs offered competition, but they also offered those wanting to learn a platform in which to do so
Here’s one for ya. Everyone worth their weight in tungsten knows who Gary Klein is. He’s fished 451 tour-level tournaments (407 with BASS and 44 with FLW) since 1979 of which he’s placed in the money 297 times (262 with BASS and 35 with FLW). He’s won 8 Bassmaster events […]
Into this fray came Oklahoman OT Fears III, who’d left a Federal job two years earlier to pursue a career in bass fishing. He’d fished nearly three dozen B.A.S.S. events by the time of the 1987 All-American, including two Classics
“Before that the top anglers didn’t think much of us at all. They didn’t even think we had bass out west much less than whether or not we could compete with them. After the Open, though, anglers like Roland [Martin] and Jimmy [Houston] would actually tell sponsors that we were good fishermen.
A few days ago we posted an ad from 1975 – Bass Cat Boat’s first full-page ad in Bass Master Magazine. In that article, Rick Pierce talked about there being three major tournament organizations (in the East) during the early to mid 70s. One of those was the Bass Casters Association or the BCA.
“Being in the lead, I did look over my shoulder a lot to see who the challengers were behind me. But you can’t dwell on that. No matter what happens or who was behind me, I knew I still had to catch a good limit each day. I knew I couldn’t be worrying about who was behind me.”
Until this time, rarely, if ever, had a southern angler ventured west to fish unless it was for one of the few events B.A.S.S. held in the west. This event was different, though. The promise of a big payday brought anglers from 22 states. Names like Roland Martin, Bobby Murray, Forrest Wood, Basil Bacon, Harold Allen, Don Butler, Cliff Craft, Rick Clunn and Ricky Green would face off against the West’s best.