Written by: Joseph Deal | WVUGo Copywriter and Editor
This year, WVU’s Fishing Club has two teams competing for national championship titles in both the Bassmaster Carhartt College Series National Championship and the FLW Yeti College Fishing Series National Championship. The teams consist of two anglers each, with the team of Nolan Minor and Casey Lanier, and the team of Branden Newcome and Michael Shughart representing WVU. In addition, the team of Nolan Minor and Casey Lanier is currently ranked fourth in the nation for the BASS College Team of the Year.
BASS offers four separate tournaments that are open to all college students, with the top ten percent of participants qualifying for the Bassmaster National Championship. These tournaments span three days, and typically house upwards of two hundred and fifty teams. The national champions are invited to the Bassmaster Classic.
The FLW hosts three regional qualifiers across five regions, with WVU competing in the Northern Region. The top ten percent are qualified to participate in the FLW National Championship. The national champions are invited to participate in the Forest Wood cup, the highest level tournament that FLW offers.WVU’s fishing club, despite a strong showing this year, is less than a decade old and has only ten members. Branden Newcome, a Mechanical Engineer from Buckhannon, WV, said that he had never fished competitively before coming to WVU, although he grew up fishing with his father. About his experience with the fishing club, Newcome said:
“As a kid, I can remember turning on the TV and seeing the college bass fishing national championship and thinking how cool it was. Now, here I am at WVU preparing to fish in the national championship. It's kinda surreal really. I'm living my dream.”
The BASS National Championship will air on ESPN, and the FLW National Championship will air on MBC Sports and WFN.For more information regarding the fishing club or membership, contact Branden Newcome at firstname.lastname@example.org or the fishing club advisor, Rick Bebout at RDBebout@mail.wvu.edu.