Live Blog: Friday, May 25th – 2018 Championship Day 2 on the water!

Friday, May 25 1:25 P.M.

We are going to shut down the live blog coverage for the day.  The first flight of boats is due in at 2:30 pm.  Follow the live weigh-in on our website and through the Facebook page.

With the last flight being due in at 4:00 pm, there is still plenty of time for teams to upgrade with some Pickwick Lake giants.  It sounds like the fish are beginning to bite again this afternoon.  The weigh-in should be filled with lots of excitement and anticipation!

Friday, May 25 1:14 P.M.

A light rain is beginning to fall here at the weigh-in site in Florence.  The radar shows multiple small bands of rain throughout the area.

Just as the rain starts to show up, we get a new update from the first place team of Carter Mcneil and Cole Floyd.  They just landed a good keeper fish that they believe puts them over the 22 pound mark.  It is going to take a good showing from someone else in the field to come from behind and grab the lead.

We just received word from one of those teams that could make a move up the leaderboard.  Logan Callahan and Andrew Roaten from Mississippi State University are experiencing an afternoon flurry.  No word on the size of the fish, but when we checked with them earlier they had confidence their spots would turn on later in the day.

Friday, May 25 12:35 P.M.

Clouds are starting to move in across the area, but that has yet to help influence the bite.  For the past two hours or so, action has really slowed down.  The teams at the top did a lot of their damage early, and now everyone is scrambling in search of a big bite.

Friday, May 25 12:05 P.M.

Here is a more detailed report on the fourth place team entering the day from Tennessee Tech University.  Garrett Turner and Austin Poston have three in the box for about seven to eight pounds. They aren’t too worried as they were in the same position at this time yesterday.  Poston is throwing a Carolina rig, and Turner is working a variety of other baits.

Friday, May 25 11:58 A.M.

Matt Cross and Mekiah Jack from Middle Tennessee State University are sitting on a good limit of fish.  They estimate it to be up over 15 pounds.  With the temperatures as warm as they are, fish care is very important today.  Matt and Mekiah have a bottle of G-Juice Livewell Treatment & Fish Care Formula, as well as three bags of ice to use in their livewell.

Friday, May 25 11:40 A.M.

Tennesse Tech University started the day in fourth, but Garrett Turner and Austin Poston are struggling so far today.  They only have around seven to eight pounds.

It’s starting to look more and more like this will come down to a battle between the first and third place teams from Bethel University.  Unless someone from outside the top few teams comes out of nowhere and catches 26-30 plus pounds, or one of these other schools can get their fish to fire, this appears to be a two horse race.

Friday, May 25 11:34 A.M.

Cole Sands and Nathan Bell from Bryan College now have a limit for 17 – 18 pounds.  Yesterday, their average fish was close to four pounds.  Today their size has decreased some and they are working to get the bigger fish to fire.

Friday, May 25 11:22 A.M.

We have been able to track down the fourth place team from Tennessee Tech University.  Garrett Turner and Austin Poston weighed in 20.07 pounds on Day 1.  The plan is to attempt to go live on our Facebook page and provide an update on how they’re doing today.

Friday, May 25 11:16 A.M.

The sun has come out and the wind has died down. We’re seeing a mid morning lull in the action.

Also of note, the weather predictions for storms arriving at 11:00 am seems to be wrong as we’re not seeing any weather near us.

In the area where this photo was taken, we were able to get updates on several teams. Teams representing LSU, Dallas Baptist, and Bryan College are nearby.  LSU has four fish in the boat and the team from DBU is culling.


Friday, May 25 10:58 A.M.

UNA continues to catch plenty of little fish.  A recent cull bumps Triston Crowder and Lake Blasingame up to around 12.5 pounds.

Friday, May 25 10:50 A.M.

The sun is shining bright here at McFarland Park in Florence, and it is getting hot out there.  Here’s a shot of one of our camera guys protecting himself from the elements with products from Buff.  Buff offers discounts to participating college anglers.  Find out more about the discount incentives here.

Friday, May 25 10:24 A.M.

The two teams at the top from Bethel University are both having a lot of success out on the water today.  Carter Mcneil and Cole Floyd have five fish for an estimated 22 pounds.  Hunter Louden and Cole Walker also have five fish and have been culling for most of the morning.  We do not have a weight estimate for them, but it is not any larger than that of their fellow teammates, and current leaders.

With Floyd and Mcneil having a good limit of fish in the box, it is going to take an impressive effort from someone else in the field to track them down.  Most likely a 26 plus pound bag will be needed to take over first place.  Pickwick Lake is very capable of kicking out a big back like that.  So far though, there are no reports of anyone else with a limit over 20 pounds.

Friday, May 25 10:18 A.M.

The second place team from UNA is still stuck on around 12 pounds.  Triston Crowder and Lake Blasingame are planning to rotate their spots and hope for good timing to result in some quality bites.

Friday, May 25 10:10 A.M.

We are live on Facebook now with Carter Mcneil and Cole Floyd, the tournament leaders after Day 1.  They are sitting on around 20 pounds right now. Casting to offshore structure, they are looking to add to their limit.

Friday, May 25 9:54 A.M.

Scott Ellis and Chase Dawson have culled up again.  This makes their sixth cull up to this point.  This should put the anglers from the University of Tennessee – Knoxville well over the 15 pound mark.

Friday, May 25 9:48 A.M.

Itawamba Community College anglers Fisher Young and Boone Faulkner have a limit for what they believe to be about 18 pounds.  On Day 1, they weighed in five fish for 12.78 pounds.  That weight has them in 43rd place entering today.

Friday, May 25 9:35 A.M.

The action this morning has been steady.  Anglers are catching a lot of fish.  Conditions today should be more conducive for fish catching than yesterday.  A light breeze is beginning to blow, and the water here at McFarland Park is moving a little bit.

The rain chances are slowly dwindling for this afternoon as well.  Our greatest threat for rain is still around the 12:00-1:00 pm time frame, but the percentages are going down.  For the anglers, they are probably split on the chances for rain.  On one hand, it’s an annoyance and makes things a little more unpleasant.  Conversely, rain could provide needed cloud cover and trigger these fish into biting.

Friday, May 25 9:08 A.M.

Matt Cross and Mekiah Jack from Middle Tennessee State University are culling already!  Weighing in only three fish for 6.39 pounds on Day 1, today is looking to be a lot more promising.  Those are some healthy looking fish to be culling out.

Friday, May 25 9:02 A.M.

Pictured above are Logan Callahan and Andrew Roaten, they enter today in fifth place.  It has been a slow start for them so far.  Their bite has been more of an afternoon deal.  Yesterday produced just seven bites for them in total.  They are currently throwing a little bit of everything including crankbaits and Carolina rigs.

Friday, May 25 8:55 A.M.

Nathan Bell and Cole Sands have added their fourth fish to the box.  This looks like another quality fish.  The Bryan College pairing now has four fish for around 15 lbs.  Entering today about four pounds back of the leaders, they are going to need to continue to upgrade to make a run at the title.

Friday, May 25 8:52 A.M.

An update from Scott Ellis and Chase Dawson from the University of Tennessee – Knoxville has them at around 15 pounds.  The duo had a limit by 7:30 am.  Since then, they have managed to cull five times.  On Day 1 they managed to bring in 13.32 pounds.  They are catching a lot of fish today, and are looking to continue to upgrade.

Friday, May 25 8:45 A.M.

The 2nd place team of Triston Crowder and Lake Blasingame have a limit.  They just upgraded twice and are starting to put something together for today.

Friday, May 25 8:40 A.M.

Hunter Louden and his teammate Cole Walker now have a limit.  The team from Bethel University is running and gunning in search of larger fish.

We are live now on Facebook with this team.  They just netted a good keeper and are getting ready to place it in the well.

Friday, May 25 8:30 A.M.

Nathan Bell and Cole Sands from Bryan College put on a good show during our Facebook Live coverage just a little bit ago.  To watch that video, follow the link.

The pair from Bryan College says they are ahead of schedule compared to where they sat this time yesterday.  The teams towards the top of the leaderboard are catching some good fish early and often this morning.

Friday, May 25 8:25 A.M.

The Day 1 leaders just caught a 4.5, and 6 pound bass to upgrade their limit.  Carter Mcneil and Cole Floyd from Bethel University now have an estimated 19 pounds for their best five.

Friday, May 25 8:10 A.M.

Facebook Live coverage from on the water is providing a good bit of information for us this morning.  The most recent team we are seeing is Cole Sands and Nathan Bell from Bryan College.  They wrapped up Day 1 in 7th place with 19.64 pounds.  In the short amount of time our crew was there they caught a 5 pounder, as well as one that would go about 2.5 to 3 pounds.  Bell and Sands have three fish for around 10.5 pounds right now.

Friday, May 25 8:05 A.M.

Watching the live coverage on our Facebook page just a few minutes ago, we saw an on the water update with the Dallas Baptist team of Trent Newman and Jake Soto.  They had 15.27 pounds on Day 1.  They are working on putting together a good bag again today.  Trent pulled one fish out of the livewell that looked to be around 3 pounds.

Friday, May 25 7:58 A.M.

This is a look at a section of the lake near Yellow Creek.  The 3rd place team of Hunter Louden and Cole Walker from Bethel University are fishing in this general area.  They only have two fish in the box, no estimation on the size of those fish.

One note we have received is that there is more recreational traffic in this area of the lake today.  With this being a holiday weekend, we could see more and more boats out on the water as the day goes along.

Friday, May 25 7:45 A.M.

Day 1 leaders Carter McNeil and Cole Floyd of Bethel University check in with a limit estimated at around 11 pounds.  Cole said yesterday that they caught a lot of their fish early in the morning.  He also noted that they had the area to themselves, and thought that maybe no one else had found this spot.  They left this area early on Day 1 in hopes of coming back to fish it hard on Day 2.  They are there now, let’s see how well they can catch them today.

Friday, May 25 7:40 A.M.

The group going up to Wilson is leaving the lock and running out onto the lake.  Several more boats decided to go up that way today.  We will see how they fare when weigh-in rolls around.  They will be due back to the lock at 1:00 pm again today.

Friday, May 25 7:30 A.M.

We have tracked down Triston Crowder and Lake Blasingame, the second place team from the University of North Alabama.  They are moving from the area we found them in, and are going to try another spot.

I spoke with Lake Blasingame after weigh-in yesterday and he said they are catching a lot of fish.  However, they did have to grind it out to cull out the little ones.

To watch them live now click here.

Friday, May 25 7:20 A.M.

Pictures are coming in from the lock as anglers prepare to go up onto Wilson Lake.  20 boats are making this move today.  Yesterday only 17 made the trip.  We did not hear reports of anyone catching them extremely well up there, so a majority of today’s focus will center around Pickwick.

Friday, May 25 7:18 A.M.

One of our camera guys sent this photo in.  His Costa del Mar sunglasses are covered in bugs.  Yesterday afternoon at weigh-in, this was a common site on many boats.  The trolling motors, and engines were covered in bugs that they encountered while running across the lake.

Friday, May 25 6:55 A.M.

All of the boats have cleared out of the marina and are now out on Pickwick Lake.  Official lock time for the anglers going up to Wilson is 7:00 am.  We will provide photos and a head count on how many boats are making that journey.

Many of the anglers we talked to yesterday are fishing around Waterloo and near the dam.  It takes roughly 30-45 minutes to make it to these sections of the lake.  Those teams should be arriving to their starting spots now.  Fish catches from that area of the lake should begin showing up soon.

Friday, May 25 6:25 A.M.

Very few teams have veered off to the left this morning leaving McFarland Park.  The ones that have headed that direction appear to be going towards the lock.  Not many teams, if any at all, have gone towards the tailrace area below Wilson Dam.

Back in the spring that was the place to be.  In some events, a good majority of the field was concentrated in that one area.  Over the past two days, the exact opposite is happening.  Look for most of the reports today to come from down lake as these anglers work to pick apart the ledges.

Friday, May 25 6:08 A.M.

The first flight of the morning is making their way out to their starting spots.  We will have crew members with each of the top three teams to start the day.  All three of these teams caught their fish early on Day 1.  Soon we will know if the same thing is true for Day 2.

Friday, May 25 5:54 A.M.

Anglers are launching and getting in line to prepare to make their way out onto Pickwick Lake this morning.  So far today there are a few clouds in the sky and it is a warm, early morning here in Florence.  Around lunch time though, things could change a little bit.  There is an 80% chance of storms for the day, with the greatest chance occurring between 12:00 and 1:00 pm.

Increased cloud cover could help the bite today.  There is still not much wind to speak of and the current flow early on today is also very minimal.  Yesterday, competitors complained of hot, still conditions that really hurt the bite.  These guys are good though and they are here for a reason, so someone will find a way to catch them today.

Friday, May 25 5:25 A.M.

Good morning!  Today is the final day of competition for the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Cabela’s.  We will be running the live blog all the way up until weigh-in.  As coverage allows, we will also be going live on our Facebook page talking with anglers and hopefully showing plenty of fish catches.  A champion will be crowned this afternoon!  Who is it going to be?