By MLF Communications Staff

EUFAULA, Okla. – Through five days of fishing at the MLF Bass Pro Tour event on Lake Eufaula, central Oklahoma’s notoriously capricious spring weather has been mirrored by the clarity of the water and behavior of the bass living in the Sooner State’s largest lake.

Heavy rains and high, chocolate-brown water greeted the field early in the week, followed by dropping, clearing water and bass rushing to beds midway through the six-day competition. The bite has been equally volatile this week, coming in brief onesy-twosy flurries on just about everything in the tackle box. And with heavy rains and thunderstorms in the forecast for the final day on Eufaula, that’s all just fine with Nick LeBrun of Bossier City, La.

Mixing a dash of buzzbait and flipping jig with a hearty dose of a vibrating jig that he wound in and around flooded trees and brush in the Canadian River, LeBrun harkened back Saturday to his days of fishing BFL tournaments on the Red River, Toledo Bend and Sam Rayburn. LeBrun connected with 12 fish for 30 pounds, 15 ounces to claim the top spot in the Knockout Round and enter Sunday’s final with both momentum and a high level of comfort for the conditions.

“With the high, muddy water and the lake being flooded in the trees and bushes, that’s definitely one of my comfort zones,” said LeBrun, who has a string of Top 10s on fisheries known for off-colored water. “It takes me back to fishing BFLs at Sam Rayburn and Toledo Bend. New fish are pulling up. The water (level) is still changing, but it’s revealing fish and it’s causing some other fish to move up.”

Sitting on the front deck of his boat retying a rod during the first period break of the day in Saturday’s Knockout Round, LeBrun delivered a telltale statement about the fishing conditions on Eufaula, and how he planned to conquer them.

“When conditions are tough and things are slow like this, a guy has to make a few casts he normally wouldn’t make,” LeBrun said. “They’re not biting good today just casting down the bank, so you have to take a few chances and throw into places that you might not have an easy time getting a fish out of. You might have to do things a little bit different.”

Less than five minutes prior, LeBrun had hooked a fish that he judged to be 5-plus pounds on a deadeye flip he had made deep into a tangle of cover. He set the hook on that fish and fought it briefly, trying to pull it over the limbs and branches he had cast over, but lost it after a brief fight. It proved to LeBrun that there was potential to access new fish.

“I call it the ‘cobweb pattern’: If you see cobwebs across a spot, you know that nobody has thrown there,” LeBrun said. “In my short career, I’ve had a little success fishing like that. I’m going to try to keep doing it (Sunday) – even make casts that I haven’t made yet. I think there are still some fish pulling up and there are probably some fish that just haven’t been thrown at yet, so I’m excited to get back out there.”

LeBrun has done most of his damage this week with a vibrating jig, specifically a white 1/2-ounce Z-Man/Evergreen ChatterBait Jack Hammer with a 4-inch Yamamoto Zako trailer. He caught two fish during the Knockout Round flipping a jig and landed his biggest fish of the day (a 4-14) on a black Buckeye Buzzerk buzzbait. As he heads into his second Bass Pro Tour Championship Round, LeBrun plans to stick with what got him this far.

“I’m all-in on the shallow power-fishing deal,” he said. “I’m going to have a few different rods out. I’m not going to totally live or die with the ChatterBait – there are just some places that you can’t throw that bait without getting hung up, so I’m probably going to implement some flipping, a buzzbait and the ChatterBait. It’s been fun grinding and just fishing, getting back to those BFL roots.”

Luke Clausen of Spokane, Wash., caught a 5-3 largemouth on a wacky rig in the third period to claim Saturday’s Berkley Big Bass Award. Berkley awards $1,000 to the angler who weighs the heaviest bass each day and a $3,000 bonus to the angler who weighs the heaviest bass of the tournament.

Jacob Wheeler entered the tournament with a 17-point lead over Alton Jones Jr. in the Angler of the Year race, but Jones made up a little ground in the Knockout Round: Jones finished just outside the cut in 11th while Wheeler finished 17th, gaining Jones 6 points on Wheeler. Wheeler leads the race for the 2024 AOY (and its $100,000 payday) with 301 points to Jones’ 289.

Five of the anglers fishing Sunday on Eufaula are currently in the Top 10 in AOY points: Cole Floyd, Drew Gill, LeBrun, Jeff Sprague and Martin Villa.

The six-day tournament, hosted by Vision Eufaula, showcases 79 of the top professional anglers in the world, competing for a purse of $659,000, including a top payout of $100,000 and valuable Fishing Clash Angler of the Year (AOY) points in hopes of qualifying for the General Tire Heavy Hitters all-star event and REDCREST 2025, the Bass Pro Tour championship.

The final 10 anglers competing will launch at 7:30 a.m. CT Sunday from the Peter’s Point-Nichols Point Boat Ramp, located on Dabbs Road in Eufaula. Takeout will be held at the boat ramp beginning at 4 p.m. Fans are welcome to attend all launch and takeout events and also encouraged to follow the event online throughout the day on the MLFNOW! livestream and ScoreTracker coverage at

The MLFNOW! broadcast team of Chad McKee and J.T. Kenney will break down the extended action live on Sunday from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT. MLFNOW! is live streamed on and the MyOutdoorTV (MOTV) app.

The tournament features the MLF catch, weigh, immediate-release format in which anglers catch as much weight as they can each day, while also feeling the pressure and intensity of the ScoreTracker leaderboard. Anglers are competing with a 1-8 minimum weight requirement for a bass to be deemed scorable. The MLF Fisheries Management Division determines minimum weights for each body of water that the Bass Pro Tour visits, based on the productivity, bass population and anticipated average size of fish in each fishery.

Knockout Round

(Figure at far right indicates weight of angler’s heaviest fish for the day)

1. Nick LeBrun -- 30-15 (12) -- 4-14

2. Drew Gill -- 27-04 (11) -- 4-07

3. Cole Floyd -- 25-12 (10) -- 4-12

4. Randy Howell -- 23-07 (10) -- 3-13

5. Skeet Reese -- 21-15 (9) -- 3-03

6. Martin Villa -- 21-01 (10) -- 3-01

7. Jeff Sprague -- 20-14 (8) -- 3-07

8. Luke Clausen -- 19-05 (8) -- 5-03

9. Zack Birge -- 18-13 (8) -- 3-11

10. Britt Myers -- 14-15 (5) -- 4-11

The following anglers did not make the cut and will not advance to the Championship Round

11. Alton Jones Jr. -- 14-04 (6) -- 4-01

12. Jason Vance -- 13-13 (6) -- 2-10

13. Dean Rojas -- 10-10 (5) -- 2-07

14. Anthony Gagliardi -- 8-03 (4) -- 2-10

15. Takahiro Omori -- 7-12 (3) -- 3-06

16. Gerald Spohrer -- 7-12 (4) -- 2-07

17. Jacob Wheeler -- 6-04 (3) -- 2-13

18. Marty Robinson -- 3-12 (1) -- 3-12

19. Brent Chapman -- 2-13 (1) -- 2-13

20. Dave Lefebre -- 1-10 (1) -- 1-10