Original Caption: Bass tournament fishermen, such as Texan Michael Dyess, continue to participate in many of the bass tournaments throughout Texas. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is considering a permit system that would enable the agency to monitor and gather data from those events. The Times, April 1992. Times photo by Reeves Feild

Today’s Friday Finale features professional bass angler Michael Dyess, of Texas.  He was featured as part of a story back in 1992 about the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s plans to begin a tournament permit system in the state to help them track events and participation, as well as to potentially gather data on bass fishing and fisheries.

Dyess was a local hammer who also ventured into the professional arena, fishing 58 Bassmaster events and qualifying for one Classic.  He was involved with many of Lonnie Stanley’s (Stanley Jigs) early innovations and can be seen wearing a Stanley Jigs hat in the photo.

Back on the story’s permit discussion, some interesting facts and figures were cited in the article about tournament fishing, both in general, as well as in Texas, at the time, such as:

  • Forty-one reservoirs in Texas will play host to nearly 300 money tournaments in 1992.
  • A staggering 3,000 to 5,000 local bass club tournaments are held annually on 200 major Texas lakes.
  • Nationally, there are more than 3,000 tournaments that have financial paybacks of some kind, and another immense but unknown number of local club tournaments held on rivers and lakes in every state with a bass population.
  • According to the Tournament Angler Directory, a twice-yearly publication based in Marble Falls that lists nearly 3,000 money tournaments, 57 lakes nationwide will host a minimum of 10 bass tournaments during 1992.  Those same 57 lakes, 11 of which are in Texas, will host a minimum total of 997 tournaments.
  • Toledo Bend topped the list in Texas with 27 scheduled events, closely followed by Sam Rayburn (26), Lake Fork (20) and Richland Chambers (18)
  • Only 7 percent of all bass fishermen belong to any organized fishing group.  And only 9 percent have fished in any kind of event.