Murray State University announced it will host the 2013 Murray State High School Fishing Open on Sunday, March 3 in partnership with FLW, The Bass Federation (TBF) and the Bluegrass State Games. The winning team will receive a $2,000 scholarship to attend Murray State while providing all teams the chance to fish Kentucky Lake in advance of the first ever bass-fishing state championship sanctioned by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association.

While the tournament is open to student anglers from every state, the highest-finishing team from Kentucky will be invited to participate in a 2013 Student Angler Federation (SAF)/FLW High School Fishing Conference Championship and may ultimately advance to the SAF/FLW High School Fishing National Championship for the chance to earn a $10,000 scholarship ($5,000 per student).

Each two-person team of students grades 9 through 12 in the Murray State Open will fish with a “coach” who provides the boat they compete in. Each team is allowed to weigh in five bass, and the team with the heaviest catch will earn a $2,000 scholarship to Murray State University.

“The first Murray State Open held in 2011 drew 73 teams from nine states,” said Dave Washburn, FLW Vice President of Operations. “With High School Fishing now a sanctioned sport in Illinois and Kentucky, plus growing interest nationwide, we expect to eclipse those numbers this year. This tournament provides students an opportunity to experience some of the best bass fishing in the nation while being hosted by one of the country’s top collegiate bass-fishing teams at Murray State.”

Participation is open to all high school students, including home schooled students, that are SAF members regardless of state of residence. SAF membership cost $25 per year and includes a digital subscription to FLW Bass Fishing magazine, insurance coverage while competing in SAF and KHSAA fishing tournaments (including the option to add a school as additionally insured), an exclusive online fishing education program, discounts on Coast Guard approved boater safety courses and many other benefits. Students 16 and older are also eligible to win great prizes in the monthly FLW Giveaway.

“Murray State was one of the first universities in the nation to embrace FLW College Fishing, and we are proud to be hosting high school students not only in this event, but also in the KHSAA High School Fishing State Championship later in the year,” Randy Dunn, Murray State University President, said. “Our location near Kentucky and Barkley lakes and highly-regarded bass-fishing club are appealing to many prospective students, so hosting those students on campus for tournaments such as these is a great fit for us.”

Students, along with their coaches, may register for the Murray State Open at HighSchoolFishing.org or by calling 580.765.9031 starting Jan. 14, 2013. There will be a mandatory rules briefing and safety meeting Saturday, March 2 in the Curris Center Theater at Murray State. There is no entry free, but students must be SAF members ($25 per year).

All participants are invited to take a free online test about boater safety, conservation and angler ethics at HighSchoolFishing.org to be eligible for contingency awards during the tournament.

Boats will be provided for high school anglers who need them at the conference championship and national championship level. Each team that qualifies for a conference championship and the national championship will also receive a travel allowance to help offset expenses.

Tournament Details:

  • Online Registration: Register at HighSchoolFishing.org.
  • Check-in and Onsite Registration: All teams must check-in Saturday, March 2 between 4-6 p.m. Central time at Murray State University’s Curris Center Theater located on the third floor at 314 Curris Center, Murray, KY 42071. A $25 late registration fee applies to those teams that did not register online.
  • Pretournament Meeting: A mandatory rules briefing and safety meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the Curris Center Theater on Saturday, March 2.
  • Takeoff & Weigh-in: Sunday, March 3; Kentucky Dam Marina, 446 Marina Drive, Gilbertsville, KY, 42044. 7 a.m. takeoff and 3 p.m. weigh-in.
  • Questions: Contact Mitch Smith at 580.765.9031 or mitch@bassfederation.com , Mark Gintert at 580.716.4251 or mark@bassfederation.com, or Walter Haney at 270.252.1575 orwhaney@flwoutdoors.com

Image courtesy Murray State

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