Six Questions for Past College Anglers
Who are you and what are you doing now?
Senior Editor & ACA Managing Director
I work as a video editor/digital content creator for CarecoTV and serve as the Managing Director for the Association of Collegiate Anglers and the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series.
When did you fish in college and what school did you fish for?
University of Arkansas: 2009-2013
What is your fondest memory of college fishing and what were some of your major accomplishments in college fishing?
My fondest memory of college fishing is qualifying for, and competing in, the 2012 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship at Lake Lewisville. The ACA Championship is the most prestigious event in collegiate bass fishing, and the qualification process through our club to earn the opportunity to fish this event was very competitive…making this a huge accomplishment and milestone in my young career. Also, to this day, I still remember the guest speaker at the banquet that year…Hank Parker.
Top 3 finish at 2010 Arkansas Tech Invitational on Lake Dardanelle
Won multiple sessions at the 2011 Big Bass Bash on Pickwick Lake
Session winner and Top 10 overall finish at 2012 Big Bass Bash on Lake Lavon
What did college fishing do or how did college fishing prepare/open doors for you in your chosen career field?
College fishing, at the time, gave me a platform to compete. Not only as an angler, but from an athletics point of view as well. Growing up, I played baseball and basketball at a high level on into my high school years. Once I stopped playing those sports, fishing became my outlet and main focus/hobby.
During college, being a member of the bass fishing club at the University of Arkansas gave me my first experiences in ‘the business.’ Brand representatives would come and meet with the club, sponsors were present at various events, and the club had specific brands we partnered with. As the club President during my junior year, I had the pleasure of communicating and working closely with club partners, as well as network and work to add new brands to our list of supporters.
After college, the networking, communication, and experiences I encountered during my time at school prepared me to be where I’m at today. I met the folks running ACA events at numerous tour stops along the way, gained invaluable experience communicating with brand partners, and experienced competitive bass fishing at the highest level I had ever reached to that point. All of those items, combined with my degree in Broadcast Journalism, play a key role in my day-to-day work here at CarecoTV and the Association of Collegiate Anglers.
What advice would you give college anglers today?
My advice would be this: you never know who’s watching or paying attention to you and your fishing career at any given time. This includes your on-the-water performance, interactions with fellow competitors, ACA staff, and industry members on-site at events, and through digital platforms like social media.
This is a tight-knit industry/sport built firmly on relationships. That could be personal relationships that result in a friend being there to help you when you’re in need out on the trail, or even relationships with brands and industry representatives.
You reap what you sow, and I am a firm believer that this mindset and mentality played a key role in me being where I am at in my career today.