GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. – FLW College Fishing is headed to Lake Guntersville March 2 for the second of four stops in the Southeastern Conference. Fifty college teams will be competing for a top award of $2,000 and a berth in the Southeastern Conference Invitational tournament.
“You can catch them anywhere on Lake Guntersville right now,” said Straight Talk pro Scott Canterbury of Springville, Ala. “It has been unbelievable here. The fishing is as good as it has been in years, and everybody is catching big weights.
“The Alabama-rig bite has been on fire the last few weeks,” Canterbury continued. “The winter has been much colder and there was a lot more rain than last year. The water clarity was dirty, and the rig hadn’t been as good. The lake started clearing up a few weeks ago, though, and it’s really turned on.”
Canterbury said that the fish are starting to transition, and can be found anywhere on the lake. He suggested that anglers who may be unfamiliar with Guntersville find the grass lines up in the creeks and throw a Rat-L-Trap.
“The Rat-L-Trap bite has been really good,” he said. “If it’s your first time on the lake, you can easily catch 20 pounds working the grass lines. However, I don’t think that a team can win relying solely on that. It’s going to be tough to compete with the fish that people are catching on the Alabama rig. A team can sit on a bridge and throw the rig all day long, have five bites, and catch 30 pounds. It’s a big-fish bait.
“There will be at least 10 boats at every bridge,” said Canterbury. “I don’t like fishing that way, just because of the number of boats that will be there. But, if you have patience and sit there all day, you can definitely catch a big bag. I think the winning team will bring in 27 or 28 pounds.”
Anglers will take off from the Lake Guntersville State Park located at 7966 Alabama Hwy. 227 in Guntersville, Ala., at 6:30 a.m. Saturday. Weigh-in will be held at the park beginning at 12:30 p.m. Takeoff and weigh-in are free and open to the public.
Schools competing in the Lake Guntersville tournament, which is hosted by the Marshall County Convention & Visitors Bureau, include:
Auburn University – Ben Curry and Jacob Fine, both of Hayden, Ala.
Auburn University at Montgomery – Tyler Strock, Slapout, Ala., and Dalton Darnell, Millbrook, Ala.
Bethel University – Jacob Hardy, Paris, Tenn., and Jake Lawrence, Union City, Tenn.
Clemson University – Matthew Garvin and Hunter Cockram, both of York, S.C.
Coastal Carolina University – Kristin Forquer, Hedgesville, W. Va., and John Miller, Conway, S.C.
Darton State College – Michael Crout, Leesburg, Ga., and Kyle Parks, Albany, Ga.
Daytona State College – Thomas Oltorik and Scott Heaberlin, both of Deland, Fla.
Elon University – William Gilbert, Manchester, Vt., and Nathan James, Greensboro, N.C.
Florida Gulf Coast University – Christian Smith, Coral Springs, Fla., and Brianne McMillan, Belle Glade, Fla.
Florida State University – Jason Mahon, Port Charlotte, Fla., and Robert Torres, Sarasota, Fla.
Freed-Hardeman University – Clint Horton, Selmer, Tenn., and Brad Martin, Murray, Ky.
Gainesville State College – Jonathan Sosebee, Clarksville, Ga., and Clint Coker, Demorest, Ga.
Gardner-Webb University – Kyle Creed, Bessemer City, N.C., and Jessica Dowling, Granite Falls, N.C.
Georgia College – Clayton Faircloth, Swainsboro, Ga., and Chancey Gray, Milledgeville, Ga.
Georgia Southern University – Tanner Parker, Dalton, Ga., and Trent Palmer, Peachtree City, Ga.
Georgia Southwestern State University – Emory Greene, Americus, Ga., and Cody Patrick, Elleville, Ga.
Jacksonville State University – Colby Smith and Justin Buckles, both of Jacksonville, Ala.
Kennesaw State University – Gregory Childers, Cave Spring, Ga., and Austin King, Acworth, Ga.
LaGrange College – Torre Pike, Flat Rock, Ala., and Tyler Johnson, Marietta, Ga.
Lander University – Cody Brock, Honea Path, S.C., and Justin McCall, Greenwood, S.C.
Lincoln Memorial University – Chris Hunt, Loudon, Tenn., and Kyle Warwick, Oak Ridge, Tenn.
Middle Tennessee State University – Nolen Spencer, Bell Buckle, Tenn., and Jonathon Reese, Fayetteville, Tenn.
Mississippi College – Will Hedgepeth and Grant Phillips, both of Clinton, Miss.
Mississippi State University – Taylor Odom, Meridian, Miss., and Josh Cameron, Starkville, Miss.
North Carolina State University – Paul Owens, Raleigh, N.C., and Tyler Faggart, Greensboro, N.C.
Polk State College – Austin Bell and Forrest Greenfield, both of Winter Haven, Fla.
Santa Fe College – Drew Cook, Quincy, Fla., and Cameron Petras, Gainesville, Fla.
Seminole State College of Florida – Neal Combs, Osteen, Fla., and Kevin Lucas, Apopka, Fla.
Southern Polytechnic State University – Zachary Dixon, Rome, Ga., and Daniel Byrd, Fairburn, Ga.
State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota – Re Durso and Jarrad Albritton, both of Sarasota, Fla.
Tennessee Tech University – Ryan Harpe and Chris Thomas, both of Cookeville, Tenn.
Tennessee Wesleyan College – John Higdon and Ben Graves, both of Athens, Tenn.
Troy University – Connor Bedsole, Arab, Ala., and Kevin Greene, Montgomery, Ala.
University of Alabama – Wes Grammer, Vance, Ala. and Nathan Stephens, Grove Hill, Ala.
University of Alabama-Birmingham – Frank Doganiero, Gardendale, Ala., and Gregory Cain, Trafford, Ala.
University of Central Florida – Hunter McKamey, Shelbyville, Tenn., and Zack Edmunds, Oviedo, Fla.
University of Georgia – Bo Larkins, Watkinsville, Ga., and Byron Kenney, Griffin, Ga.
University of Mississippi – Christian Braswell, Gulfport, Miss., and Jason Rankin, Flora, Miss.
University of Montevallo – Joseph Handley, Hueytown, Ala., and Jonathan Suchey, Jasper, Ala.
University of North Alabama – Robb Young, Rogersville, Ala., and Andrew Nutt, Lawrenceburg, Tenn.
University of North Florida – Brock Reeves, Hilliard, Fla., and Rachel Amuso, Jacksonville, Fla.
University of South Alabama – Logan Marston and Ethan Wages, both of Mobile, Ala.
University of South Carolina – Hampton Anderson, Anderson, S.C., and Zack Davis, Rock Hill, S.C.
University of South Florida – Nick Ahearn, Sebring, Fla., and Matthew Reeves, Hilliard, Fla.
University of Southern Mississippi – John Ladner, Kiln, Miss., and Christopher Warshauer, Picayune, Miss.
University of Tennessee – Hunter Shults, Lawrenceburg, Tenn., and John Svancarek, Knoxville, Tenn.
University of Tennessee-Chattanooga – Parker Bacon, Nashville, Tenn., and Taylor Bolton, Chattanooga, Tenn.
University of Tennessee-Martin – Hayden Smith, Dickson, Tenn., and Alex Derry, Martin, Tenn.
Wake Forest University – Graham Rich, Lafayette, La., and Taylor Zacks, Winston-Salem, N.C.
Young Harris College – Brad Rutherford, Lavonia, Ga., and Matthew Peeler, Griffin, Ga.
Three regular-season qualifying events are held in each conference – Central, Northern, Southeastern, Texas and Western. The top 15 teams from each qualifying tournament will advance to one of five two-day FLW College Fishing Conference Invitational tournaments, where the first-place team wins $4,000 for their club. The top 10 teams from each Conference Invitational advance to the 2014 FLW College Fishing National Championship.
College Fishing is free to enter. All participants must be registered, full-time undergraduate students at a four-year college or university and members of a fishing club recognized by their college or university.
For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow College Fishing on Facebook at Facebook.com/FLWFishing and on Twitter at Twitter.com/FLWFishing. Visit CollegeFishing.com to sign up or to start a club at your school.
FLW is the industry’s premier tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide in 2013 over the course of 220 tournaments across five tournament circuits, four of which provide an avenue to the sport’s richest payday and most coveted championship trophy – the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW tournament fishing can be seen on the Emmy-nominated “FLW” television show and is broadcast to more than 559 million households worldwide, making it the most widely distributed weekly outdoors-sports television show in the world. FLW is committed to providing a lifestyle experience that is the “Best in Fishing, On and Off the Water.” For more information about FLW visit FLWOutdoors.com and look for FLW on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and YouTube.