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  • Tony Holzer of East Palestine, OH writes:

    The best thing about MLF is they don't play that stupid music when the angler catches fish. When I'm watching the other shows it's on mute.

  • Randall Verran of Colorado Springs, CO writes:

    While its true the format in MLF has changed by creel limit, it offsets this in part by the often obscure fisheries and the no pre-practice restriction. Basically, I like it because you get to see what the professionals experience in this format, which is similar to what a lot of us weekend anglers face when going to a new lake and trying to figure out bass with little or no prior knowledge of the fishery. Yeah, if I had my druthers, I would rather catch bigger bass, but in the aforementioned scenario, I'm just trying to learn the fishery and maximize my fishing-catching experience.

  • William Cooper of Ashland City, TN writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I do like MLF, but would like to know what they get for winning. Just a trophy?

    BassFan says: There are now monetary awards as well, but the amounts are not publicly disclosed.

  • Terry Farmer of Tyner, KY writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I agree with most of your comments, but if the best fisherman is getting beat by the less-accomplished fisherman because of the latter targeting bank-runners, then if the former were to live up to his "best fisherman" title all he has to do is target big fish and catch them. The MLF could change their weigh-in format at any time to just allow 2-pounders and up to be counted toward the total and still be interesting enough to capture viewers. I believe the "Scoretracker" is what adds the element of watchability to the program.

  • James Ogstad of Caldwell, ID writes:

    RE: Palaniuk's Zoom deal – We are so glad for him – he is a class act. He will be our speaker at our bass dinner here in Idaho coming up soon. Way to go, Palaniuk!

  • Steve Sendelweck of Ramsey, IN writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I agree that MLF is entertaining. But as a tournament fisherman, I would at least like to see a 15-inch size limit instead of 12.

  • Dennis Pentecost of Milford, IL writes:

    I know the pro bass anglers are good, but I wonder how they would do in local club tournaments. We have to fish where the length limits are 14, 15, 16 and 18 inches. Nowhere do we fish for 12-inch bass.

  • Randall Kramer of New Braunfels, TX writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – Let's remember that MLF events are being held on mystery lakes for which the pros get no practice. That makes a big difference strategy-wise. If they could easily locate big schools of larger fish I'm sure they would do that, but there is a time restriction. All the pros know going in that whoever finds the biggest concentration of fish or the most repeatable pattern is most likely going to win. Therefore, it still makes the playing field even.

    Also I think you use some stereotypes for catching numbers of fish. You say "bank runners," but plenty of the events have been won offshore or with power-fishing techniques, not just shaky-heads. I for one appreciate that the fish are being put back in the lake immediately and not being swung in the boat to smash off the carpet or windshield and can live with seeing them catch a smaller average size. The level of competition is still high and it takes the best approach to win – it's just a slightly different type of game.

  • Mike Daley of Springfield, IL writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I agree, I love the show, but I find myself starting to lose a little interest watching so many small fish being weighed. Maybe they could add a bonus weight for every fish over 4 pounds to give an incentive to look for bigger fish.

  • Steve Colvin of Huntsville, AL writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – Joe, I love your articles. Anything that makes me think about a topic in a new way, I give a good grade. The question you pose is: Should a tournament be the biggest five or the most keepers? I was looking through some old Bassmasters the other day (early '70s). It is amazing to see bass being held up on stringers at the weigh-in! I can't believe they used to do that!

    Tournaments used to be about bringing in the most fish. Soon, sanity prevailed and I guess they said only bring in 10, which must have later got turned into only five. Still, the original concept was the most fish.

    I like MLF a lot. With today's technology, we can actually pull this off with out hurting the fish. We will see where this goes, but we have to ask ourselves, when we are looking at a 2050 Bassmaster magazine, will we say, "I can't believe we used to make those fish ride around in a hot livewell for 8 hours"?

  • Chad Hill of Marion, IL writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I see where you are coming from, but my viewpoint differs slightly. You stated that it is easy to catch loads of smaller keeper bass. I assume you haven't fished in the southern half of Illinois. It's tough here. From what I hear, fishing in some neighboring states is just as tough. Although I live only a couple hours from Kentucky Lake, I can't afford to go down there all of the time and they don't always jump in the boat down there either. And how often in an MLF round do you see an angler's bites dry up, forcing him to make changes and adjustments.

    I enjoy seeing the on-the-water thoughts of the competitors. It has been very enlightening. Very few whack 'em all day. Also, I see MLF as a different way to measure the best anglers as compared to how winners have been determined in the past.

  • Jeff Rhoton of Collinsville, OK writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – Just wanted to say thank you. Great read on the article about MLF. We are always trying to move the ball forward, but having fun at the same time.

  • Rich Falcon of Evans Mills, NY writes:

    I couldn't agree with Joe B. more regarding MLF. While I do love watching it and agree it's probably the most entertaining bass-related show on television, the constant bank-beating dinkfests can be irritating. There's zero way the MLF format is showcasing/rewarding the best of the best. Change it to the biggest five-fish limit like every other tournament and it would be darn near perfect.

  • Mathew Meyer of Nashville, TN writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I'd like to see a variation of MLF where you were allowed something like 10 fish that count, but have to decide when you catch a fish if it is going to be one of your 10 or not. No "culling." Once it's on the board it can't be removed and once you decide it's not going to be on the board (and throw it back), there is no going back.

  • Randy Brandenburg of Frisco, TX writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I love MLF too. Keep in mind that it is still very new. I don't think it is poised to replace the tried and true known competitive tournement model. I do think it has had as great as an impact for tour anglers as the PAA did – even more, probably.

  • Jeff Mitchell of Fish Lake, IN writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – I like MLF because, as a casual person who fishes, I want to catch numbers of bass with maybe an occasional big one here and there. I want to have fun. MLF teaches me how to catch numbers and what I should be doing for that. I used to tournament-fish, but now it's all about fun. MLF style is fun!

  • Paul Wallace of Cambridge City, IN writes:

    RE: Balog on MLF – The format could easily change to the biggest five or 10 or any number of bass. If need be, MLF has many options to change things up. Really depends on the viewership – that is the driving force.

  • Gary Longley of So. Londonderry, VT writes:

    RE: Hartman chasing a dream – Congrats Jamie on the tour deal! That's awesome. First time I saw that you'd made the Elites. Do what you do best – win!

  • Bob Utterback of Huntington, TX writes:

    RE: MLF Championship – Can't wait. Love MLF. I live in a rural area and have DirecTV. I was watching MLF until they (DirecTV) dropped the channel from my package.

  • Randy Phillips of Buffalo, MN writes:

    RE: Hartman chasing a dream – Love the heart and the willingness to go for it! I hope you're able to cash some checks and/or pick up sponsorship to complete the season. I would love to be in your position and will pull for your success. Good luck!

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