Bobbie Handcock | School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences
PINE BLUFF, Ark. – The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Fishing Team will host the third tournament of the Arkansas Collegiate Series Saturday, Nov. 16, from sunrise until 3 p.m. on the Arkansas River at Pine Bluff. The event will get underway at the Regional Park Boat Ramp.
This two-person team style tournament series is for full-time collegiate anglers only and is managed entirely by the UAPB Fishing Team. Five UAPB Aquaculture/Fisheries students will be participating; Andrew Sanders with Matt Smith, Hunter Dickey with Ignacio Lopez-Morales, and Dustin Cauthon (fishing solo). Last month’s tournament on Lake Dardanelle drew a record (for the Arkansas Collegiate Series) field of 24 teams from Arkansas and Texas.
“This week, teams from Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana have committed and we hope to have another good turnout,” said Scott Jones, UAPB Fishing Team coach and Small Impoundment Extension Specialist.
Spectators are encouraged to take a few minutes to stop by the launch (just before sunrise) and/or the weigh-in (beginning at around 3 p.m. at the Regional Park Boat Ramp Pavilion) to cheer for the UAPB team and to see how they do.
“Let’s show our students, and the students fishing for other schools, that we care about our team and our anglers,” Jones said.
The team survived the graduation of virtually all of its founding members in 2012 and welcomed its first high school recruit, Hunter Dickey from White Hall, this year. The remaining team members are: Dustin Cauthon, Jerryan Harris, Chris Laskodi, Ignacio Lopez-Morales, Andrew Sanders, Matt Smith and Ele Thompson.
Jones is also available to help high schools form their own fishing clubs under the direction of the Student Angler Federation (SAF), a branch of The Bass Federation (TBF). He said the SAF is the premier high school fishing organization.
“They have lined out the process for starting a high school fishing club on their website and can guide you through the steps if you need more assistance,” he said. “All you need are six students and a faculty adviser to get started.”
Each student then purchases a $25 membership to the SAF. “With this membership, the federation provides practical lessons in math, language arts and science applicable to fishing as well as insurance coverage for SAF high school events,” he said.
“There are also fundraisers that can help offset the cost of running these clubs,” Jones said. “Starting a club is not difficult and it provides students a fun, competitive activity that they can continue the rest of their lives. If you would like to start a high school fishing club, check out http://www.highschoolfishing.org/getting-started/ to get it running.”
For more information, you may also contact Jones at 870-575-8185 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.