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Dock Talk

Welcome to BassFan's Dock Talk section, where you will see brief, newsworthy items that for one reason or another can't be made into full-blown news articles. Despite the name, and in keeping with BassFan's editorial policy, every effort will be made to avoid publishing outright rumors.

More dock talk articles

  • Sunline Strong Performer: Cayuga

    <b><font color=green>Sunline Strong Performer: Cayuga</font></b>

    Jeff Kriet's season was on the line heading into day 2 of last week's Cayuga Lake Bassmaster Elite Series. He'd caught a pedestrian 12-pound bag on day 1 and sat in 73rd place in the standings.

    He came into the tournament at No. 43 in the Angler of the Year race and was poised to slide out of the Top 50 – and thus fail to qualify for the AOY Championship, which would cost him an opportunity to compete for a 2015 Classic berth. He needed to bounce back with a much stronger sack.

    He did just that, bringing a 16-11 stringer to the scale. It moved him up 29 places in the standings and he gained two more the following day to finish 42nd. That moved him up to 41st on the final points list and secured his spot in the AOY Championship next month at Michigan's Bays de Noc.

    "My biggest problem the first day was I had two or three different deals going on," he said. "I thought I could catch them cranking, I thought I could catch them casting around some deep grass and I thought I could catch them flipping the deep grass with a big weight. I think I tried to do too much.

    "I knew on the second day that if I didn't pull it together, it was going to cost me my chance at the Classic. I just picked up the big rod and flipped grass all day."

    He flipped a Big Bite Baits Yo Mama under a punch skirt and 1-ounce weight, all attached to 65-pound braided line.

    "I felt like I could've done it the third day, too. I had two 4-pounders, but it was real cloudy and windy and I couldn't see the grass heads and I basically had to blind-flip.

    "The fish were in clusters. You could go a long time with no bites and then you'd get around them and you might flip up six or seven."

    The Sunline Strong Performer, which focuses on the angler who makes the most significant single-day move in the standings at each tour-level event, is brought to you by the great people at Sunline.

  • Big Bite Lookback: Cayuga

    <b><font color=green>Big Bite Lookback: Cayuga</font></b>

    Day 1 was Mike McClelland's best day at the Cayuga Lake Bassmaster Elite Series. It could've been better, though, and if it had been, he might've qualified to fish the final day instead of setting for a 13th-place finish.

    "That first day was really what bit me, as bad as that is to say," he said. "I caught them real good but I didn't realize the potential of the fish I'd found.

    "I had what I weighed (17-12) by 12:15 or 12:30 and I elected to go practice the rest of the day. If I would've stuck with it, I might've been able to cull up a little bit."

    He pitched a creature bait under a punch skirt and a 1-ounce weight into deep grass.

    "We heard those pre-tournament predictions of how it was going to take 25 pounds a day to win and a lot of us snickered and laughed at that. We knew there was a fair number of fish in there, but with the pressure we were going to on it we thought it would fish pretty small and guys would really have to manage their fish.

    "By the third day of competition I had a new respect for how good of a lake it really is. That was the day the wind blew hard and I just went to the bank and I saw more fish that day than I could've expected. I caught 15 or 18 keepers and I saw 30 or 40 more chase my bait or roll on it or come out from under docks."

    He fished the shallows with a homemade vibrating jig with a fluke-style trailer.

    "I was throwing the shad color rather than the bream. I really didn't see a lot of shad, but the fish reacted better to that."

    The Big Bite Lookback, which focuses on the angler who's first out of the final cut at each tour-level event, is brought to you by the great folks at Big Bite Baits.

  • Toledo Bend yields 14 1/2-pounder

    Toledo Bend yields 14 1/2-pounder

    A Texas woman caught a 14.66-pound largemouth bass at Toledo Bend Reservoir last Saturday while on a scouting trip with her husband for an upcoming Fishers of Men tournament.

    Judy Cagle and husband, Randy, launched their boat at 944 Park Marina and settled on fishing submerged hydrilla in 15 feet of water in the Housen Bay area, according to a report in the Beaumont (Tx.) Enterprise newspaper.

    Cagle said the fish inhaled a wacky-rigged soft-plastic stickbait on her second cast and after a brief battle came to the surface. The fish registered 14.4 pounds on the couple's hand-held scale and they quickly transported it to a nearby lakeside resort and then to a nearby convenience store to be weighed on a certified scale.

    The fish weighed 14.66 pounds, was 26 inches long and had a 21-inch girth. Pending certification, it will rank as the fifth-largest bass in the Toledo Bend record books and is the largest bass caught at the Bend since 2009.

    Despite efforts to keep the fish alive, including keeping it in a large aerated tank overnight to help it stabilize and recover, the bass did not survive.

    To read more about the epic catch, click here.

  • Balog: The new reality

    Balog: The new reality

    Joe Balog weighs in this week on the controversy that surrounded Anthony Gagliardi's recent Forrest Wood Cup victory, which included a less-than-amicable exchange on the final day with a local angler who was allegedly concerned about that particular spot on Lake Murray being exposed. Balog writes that it's time we all faced the new reality: Due to technological advances, offshore bass haunts are no longer in the realm of the unknown and multiple boats gathering on the best of those places will be the norm for the foreseeable future.

    To read the newest edition of Balog's Bass War, click here.

  • Rankings: Christie's lead reduced

    Rankings: Christie's lead reduced

    Jason Christie remained in the No. 1 slot in the newest edition of the BassFan World Rankings, but the two-tour pro's mixed results over the past 3 weeks caused his lead over 2nd-place Andy Morgan to shrink a bit.

    To see the full list, click here.

  • Texan buys Kick'n Bass

    Texan buys Kick'n Bass

    Longtime Texas tournament angler Ron Risenhoover notified BassFan this week that's he's purchased the attractant manufacturing company Kick'n Bass from founder Ken Kross and relocated it from Arizona to Texas.

    Risenhoover's company, R-Scientific Enterprises, bought Kick'n Bass under the stipulation that the formulas not be altered.

    “We are very proud to have been entrusted with this company," he said. "For over 18 years Kick’n Bass has picked up a loyal following with its proven products and we do not plan to make any changes in the formulas. We are currently contacting the past field reps and pro staff to inform them of the ownership change and to expect a 'grass roots earthquake' as we revitalize the visibility of all of our products."

    Kick'n Bass comes in three bass formulas (garlic, crawfish and shad) as well as versions for crappie, trout, walleye and saltwater species.

  • New gear: Big Bite Baits new colors, sizes

    New gear: Big Bite Baits new colors, sizes

    At ICAST earlier this summer, BassFan stopped by the Big Bite Baits booth to check out what was new. Elite Series pro Dean Rojas took us through some of the new colors that will available in his signature series baits like the Fighting Frog, Cane Thumper and Warmouth.

    To hear more from Rojas, click here.

  • Poll: Past winner's exemptions?

    The last time a Bassmaster Classic took place without Kevin VanDam in the field was 1990. Another one will occur at South Carolina's Lake Hartwell in February as the four-time Classic winner failed to qualify for the sport's premier event for the first time in his illustrious career.

    That occurrence has sparked a debate among fans as to whether the Classic should follow the lead of golf's Masters tournament and offer exemptions to all former winners. How about multiple-time winners?

    To vote in the new BassFan Opinion Poll, click here to return to the home page and scroll down the right side.

  • Nixon, Yelas reminisce

    Nixon, Yelas reminisce

    The Bass Fishing archives has launched a series of stories and videos that will interest longtime fans. It features Larry Nixon and Jay Yelas looking back to the early stages of their careers and recalling some of the most memorable tournaments of a bygone era.

    In the first installment, they talk about the 1990 Megabucks derby at Florida's Harris Chain – a 6-day marathon that Nixon won by nearly 10 pounds. He and Yelas were paired together on day 1 and Yelas lip-landed the largest fish Nixon ever caught in competition, a 10-10 brute.

    To see it, click here (the video is embedded at the bottom).

  • Watson aligns with Waft

    Watson aligns with Waft

    FLW Tour pro James Watson has joined the pro staff of South Africa-based rod manufacturer Waft Fishing.

    "We are excited about James joining our team and helping us to promote the rods in the U.S.," said Waft's Dan Mathisen. "We appreciate James being proactive about introducing them to other anglers."

    Watson, a Missouri resident, has been using Waft rods for over a year.

    "I love my Waft rods," he said. "These high-performance carbon fiber rods are bulletproof. They are hard to break but super lightweight and sensitive."

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