Kenneth Anderson (left) and Drew Porto Showing Off Their Winning Stringer

The first Arkansas Collegiate Tournament Trail event took place on Saturday, September 17th on the Arkansas River.  The river proved it can be a stingy fishery, as only twelve of the twenty five boats weighed in fish.  However, as always, a few teams figured out how to catch them.

On top of the pack were Kenneth Anderson and Drew Porto, both sophomores at the University of Arkansas, who are proving to be top contenders in the collegiate trail.  Kenneth and Drew had a practice they would like to forget; after fishing fifty miles of the river and beaching their boat on a sandbar, they did not catch a single keeper.  These anglers make a good point that you do not necessarily have to catch fish to have a successful practice.  “We just learned that we were doing the wrong thing and we were able to go out the day before to scout around in Pool Seven,” Kenneth said.  The practice allowed the team to observe the extremely small baitfish present so Kenneth made a quick run to the tackle shop to pick up the winning bait.

With an efficient run and gun approach, Drew and Kenneth were able to capture four nice fish to propel them to victory.  Their winning stringer ended up weighing 11.04 pounds thanks to a shad colored one-quarter ounce Redeye Shad and spinnerbait.  “We fished a lot of wing dams, we would catch 10 or 15 fish on every single stop but catching the keepers proved to be difficult,” said Kenneth.

Kenneth and Drew were both able to go home with some nice extra cash for their well-deserved win.  However, we must point out that their winnings could have been even more as they failed to enter the “Big Bass” pot.  “We visited Pizza Hut the night before and they closed their credit card machines, so we had to spend our “big bass” money on our pizza” the winning team said.  I wonder if the taste of their pizza was good enough to cover the bad taste left over from missing out on big bass?

Finishing in second place was Colton Reynolds and Adam Law from the University of Arkansas at Monticello.  These anglers have been viable competitors on the College Tournament Trail with valuable experience gained on the high school trail.  They grinded their way to a five-fish limit that weighed in at 10.31 and took Big Bass honors of the tournament which weighed 3.31. The third place finishers were Zack Birge and Blake Flurry from Oklahoma State University bringing their five-fish limit for a total weight of 9.51.

About the Author

Brandon Dickenson is a graduate of the University of North Texas and was the founder and past president of their bass club. He continues to fish when and where he can while writing about the current college bass fishing scene. He can be contacted at