1. When did you start fishing? What was the catalyst? I have been fishing as long as I can remember. My Dad always took me fishing as a kid, and between him and my uncle, I was able to be on the water almost every weekend since I was probably 4 years old.
2. If you could only use one rod and one lure, what would it be and why? I could only use one rod it would definitely be a 7’6” Heavy flipping stick. The Halo 7’6” H Titanium is my favorite rod of all. I love flipping and pitching to cover, but I also use the same rod out deep.
3. If you could fish any body of water in the world, what would it be? If I could fish any body of water, I would chose the Coosa River. I grew up fishing the Coosa and have so many fond memories that it would be hard to pick anywhere else. And, when you have those Coosa Spotted bass, along with largemouths, it’s hard to beat.
4. What has been the most unexpected surprise or challenge about fishing the FLW tour? My biggest surprise about fishing the FLW Tour has been how respectful all the fishermen are. I think of almost everyone on tour as a true friend, and believe they feel the same about me. Many of them are like family. The biggest challenge in fishing the tour was being away from my family so much. We spend a lot of time on the road, and it is hard at times as we miss a lot of important times at home.
5. Who has been a mentor for you in the fishing industry that you feel has made an impact on your professional career? I had many mentors in bass fishing from a very young age. My dad, my many uncles, and Charles Thomas (a very popular and successful local fisherman) were my childhood and young adulthood mentors. I met Jay Yelas before turning pro and have been privileged to room with him since my rookie year; so, he has been a great mentor to me as well.
6. What advice would you give to someone who wants to start a pro fishing career? I help out with several high school fishing teams and enjoy it very much. Many kids say they want to work their way up and become professional fishermen. I tell each of them that if it is truly their passion to follow their dreams as far as they can. Don’t chase after it if they are trying to do it for fame or fortune, because it’s not for everyone, but God does have a plan for everyone and will take care if you look to him.
7. You’re already a 9-time qualifier for the Forrest Wood Cup, which is an amazing record! What is one of the contributing factors to your success thus far? I have had an extremely blessed career so far, and I think that the main reason for my success is my versatility. Many, many hours and days on the water, and I try to make sure I learn something every time I get on the water.