A Little Boy Grows up to Live a Dream
Auburn University's Matt Lee on the cover of national Bassmaster magazine.
Growing up fishing on Alabama’s Lake Guntersville in North Alabama, the young man dreamed of this day. The day he would be fishing against the best fishermen in the world. That day is here for current Auburn University student and AU Bass Club member, Matt Lee.
The Bassmaster Classic started today and Matt was there representing his fishing partner and brother Jordan Lee, his alma mater, and thousands of college anglers from around the nation.
A member of Auburn University Bass Club, Matt beat out his brother Jordan (in a two man showdown) for the Carhartt Bassmasters College Classic back in July. The individual National Championship landed him a berth in the Superbowl of Professional Bass Fishing – The Bassmaster Classic.
The event carries with it a half million dollar purse and thousands of dollars in potential endorsements. The hype leading up to the event is huge. Matt was profiled recently in a Bassmaster video that you can see here. Television cameras will be on hand at every turn this weekend as live coverage will be on line at the Bassmaster channel and taped shows will be aired of the final event the first week in March on ESPN2.
In the latest cover story for “Bassmaster” magazine, Matt said he was understandably nervous about performing on the biggest stage in the sport and going up against the best. Nevertheless, he’s not intimidated.
You would think the pressure would be too intense for a 23 year old college student. But make no mistake, Matt may be a rookie to the pro’s but he’s no rookie to tournament fishing.
He competed collegiately for the University’s Bass Club, in seven Bassmaster weekend events, eight FLW college events, and 14 BFL’s. “It’s only 3 days of fishing,” says Matt. “And if a guy gets the right fish, anything can happen. I plan to get dialed in, find the winning technique and make it happen.”
An armada of bass boats took off at 6:30 am to compete on legendary Grand Lakes O’ the Cherokee located in the foothills of the Ozarks near Tulsa. Thousands braved the 20 degree temperatures to witness the launching.
And thousands will be there on Sunday to view the final weigh in and the crowning of the 43rd Bassmaster World Champion. Maybe just maybe that little boy from Lake Guntersville, Alabama will be the new champ.
Good luck Matt, the eyes of the Tigers are on you today!
UPDATE SUNDAY 2/24/13: Matt finished 46th out of a field of 53. Cliff Pace of Petal, Miss. is the 2013 Champion. However, Matt still remains the Champion of the college ranks. And after college, we may see him back in the Clasic as a professional.