Maybe you’ve read, the Toyota Texas Bass Classic field has just been announced. It’s a big money, no entry fee contest that is optimistically being billed as “the unifying world championship” of bass fishing.

The reason, the event features the top 15 from the FLW Tour, the Top 15 from the Bassmaster Elites and the top 15 from the PAA Bass Pro Shops tour, four “exemptions,” along with the defending champion of the TTBC. It’s a really nice field with KVD, Hackney, Klein and the likes. But there is one blaring omission.

Skeet Reese will not be there and the grousing has begun:  “Why would anyone miss out on a free shot at more money and prestige?” I’ve read Skeet has determined to spend time with his family, rather than participate. And on surface, I can’t argue with his decision. One’s family should be paramount.

But I think this goes beyond that. For the most enigmatic figure in the sport, a former BASS World Champion, and Bassmaster Angler of the Year, Reese is looking at the bass union’s upstart contest and he’s thinking: “Is my career made better for showing up; or is the event better because I show up?

Sure, Skeet’s family is important. But it’s also probably important on all the other days he fishes the Elites, goes on TV, does sports shows, etc. In the case of the TTBC, I don’t think Skeet is sold on the importance of the contest and he’s keeping his independence. And by doing so, his eminence.

But let’s not overlook the obvious. There is an issue of risk for Reese. The TTBC serves some up in the form of nemesis, Kevin VanDam.  Reese ended up on the short end of the stick in the Elite’s AOY race two years in a row.  What if it were to happen again? Clearly that’s a risk Skeet neither wants or needs.

But more importantly, Reese is already at the vortex of the sport–and it’s not located in Conroe, Texas. He doesn’t need to be there, so he’s not going.

 




4 Responses to “Skeet a no-show for ‘unifying world title’”


Skeet has his values in place! The guy has a young family that he is away from for months at a time during the Elite season. The off season is his time to enjoy his family and home! You try and get any pro NFL, NBA or MLB star to show up for an off season event and you had better be putting up a pretty large show up fee…So I don’t blame Skeet one bit, he gives a lot to the sport, lets the fishing world enjoy his talents and makes a pretty good living doing it; let his family enjoy him for a few months.

George Azevedo

Very well said George! FAMILY FIRST!

Yes the issue of Skeet’s choice here is significant on several levels, but I received an email from Alan Clemons, communications director for the PAA, who wanted to clarify the organization’s role with the event: “The Toyota Texas Bass Classic is not owned by the Professional Anglers Association. The PAA sanctions the event for our anglers and provides supporting assistance with tournament rules and communications, but the PAA is not the owner or event manager.”

Family, yes, and also, he’s had a bit of trouble sitting down since he left ‘Bama…..

Leave a Reply