Catoosa, OK – Oct. 28, 2018 - The Bassin’ Magazine Big Bass World Championship (BBWC) is in the books as 52 anglers from across the nation paired up for a day on the water at Snowdale State Park, Hudson Lake located in Salina, Oklahoma.

       49 BBWC State Champions, BassResource.com 2nd Chance Lucky Winner Matt Ellis, and 2018 Big Bass World Champion Jason Irvin arrived Friday evening for dinner and pre-tournament activities.

       One special angler from BassResource.com, in a 2nd chance winner drawing, is randomly selected from a special post on the BassResource.com forum board, giving anglers one more chance and way to win to compete in the finals. Matt Ellis won the BassResource.com lucky drawing for 2018!

       State Champion anglers were paired up, had a short question and answer session with tournament director and BASSIN’ Magazine owner Brad Uhl, and received over $500 in fishing prizes for each state champion were handed out.

       “BASSIN’ is proud to be a title sponsor for this event, every year it means so much to these anglers, who at home, may not have the time to compete on a tournament level,” Uhl said. “This gives them something more than prizes, it is a true life changing experience.”

        State Championship prizes included a spool of line from McCoy Line, a SteelShad bait, several different Z-Man baits including a Freedom Chatterbait. Some Mr. Wiffle Lures, Bassin Subscription and 2019 entry fee, Fishouflage Bass Shirts, and lots of other prizes top off the list! The trophies from www.basstrophiesonline.com were displayed on the weigh in table, courtesy of Angler Nation weigh-in stage. Also on display was the WeldCraft Boat, Suzuki motor, and EZ-Trac trailer, with the BASSIN’ Magazine Official Vehicle.

       The event started at safe light, and the forecast was clear and calm with light 0-5 mph winds! A perfect weather forecast for a fantastic day of fishing! The anglers fished in near 75-degree temperatures and no winds all day.

       The launch at 7:15 am went off smoothly, and anticipation and excitement was thick as anglers idled out past the no wake sign. This year a new rule was implemented, with quit fishing at 2:30, and Weigh-in was scheduled now at 3:00 p.m. on the Angler Nation weigh-in stage, which carries top of the line equipment. www.anglernation.com

       “These guys come across this stage and they will feel like they are on top of the world,” Joe Davis, with Angler Nation, said. “The added hot seat for the current leader makes it that much cooler.”

       The 2018 Big Bass World Championship prize was higher this year, up to $75,000 and a new WeldCraft 165 boat, 40HP Suzuki motor, and EZ-TRAC Aluminum trailer. Weldcraft continues to lead the industry in solidly, well-crafted aluminum fishing boats, and is perfect for the weekend angler.

       “WeldCraft is proud to partner with the BBWC, as we look forward to continuing our partnership into the future,” Kaye Daugherty, WeldCraft marketing director, said. “The BBWC is a great match and fit for the weekend anglers fishing their style of tournament, and the quality of boat WeldCraft produces. We hear it from the anglers as well!”

       The WeldCraft Boat is sitting pretty on the all-aluminum EZ-Trac trailer, with custom wheels and lightweight construction. This is an amazing trailer.

       The Suzuki outboard is a great fit on the WeldCraft boat also. This boat glides so smoothly in rough or calm conditions, and the Suzuki get incredible gas mileage. “I towed 4 family members in my WeldCraft with my Suzuki on a tube all Memorial Day weekend,” 2017 BBWC Champion Jason Ervin said. “One tank of gas and plenty of power, everyone is amazed when they ride and fish in my boat. I couldn’t thank the BBWC, WeldCraft, Suzuki and EZ-Trac trailers enough!”

       The time was here and as the weigh-in began it was evident anglers had a great day, and caught bass in the beautiful conditions as they were coming up to the aerated holding tanks with their fish.

       First in line, was the only female competitor this year, Nikki Delio, winning the state of ID. Such a great smile and such enthusiasm bringing that fish up to the scale. “I am so excited to hit my personal goal this year, I wanted to weigh a fish, and here I am at the stage of the BIG BASS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP weighing in this beautiful fish! I am so excited!”  1.83 on the scales and that is the fish to beat as other anglers are waiting in the aerated tanks.

       Next up is Jason Jacobs, winning GA. Jason is one of many anglers that fished the USA BBWC, and traveled around to enter a qualifying fish. Jason is also one of many anglers that qualified 2nd for the state, and we always take 2nd place if 1st is unable to attend. “You are fishing anyway, you take all the photos with the ruler, and you might as well send it in. You never know, here I am!” Jason’s fish on the scale weighed 3.47, a nice fat bass!

       Out of the aerated tank next is Jeremy Russel, winning OR. Jeremy is current active military, and is stationed in Germany. By far our longest traveling finalist. Jeremy took 10 days and traveled 1500 miles fishing multiple states with a game plan in mind, of qualifying for just one state. It worked, here he is at the finals, and his fish is on the scale at 2.30.

        The talk is rising over in the holding tanks, as nerves start to set in. Tension is building as whispers get loud on the next contestant walking up, John Shinn from Texas. Anglers know this is a big fish, and he is excited. John was fishing the state of Texas, and won with just a couple of days left. Brad Uhl has referred to him during the tournament as “Team Shinn” because he has over 10 family members here cheering him on. John loves fishing, and had an unfortunate series of strokes, and his doctor said get back to fishing, and he did. He caught the qualifying fish with a family member, and no one even knew he had entered the BBWC. Here he is at the finals, and approaching the scale with a large fish, 3.57 and enough to take the lead.

         Next to the scale was Scott Pennington, from MS. Scott is another multi-year qualifier, but got 2nd for the state of MS this year, “Look, as it says, send in your fish you never know!” Scott says. His fish up on the scale, a healthy fat fish, and it is 3.76, and just taking the lead.

         Up next is Marcel Baker, winning AL and another state, but BBWC rules state when winning multiple states, you are chosen for the state you live in first. So here is Marcel, a big bass specialist in his state of AL, but what can he do here in OK? He pulls a giant from his bag, a long fish looking for shad, and it weighs in at 3.72, just under the current leader.

        Bob Wright from IL, another multi state champion approaches the scales. “I am so glad to be here Brad, you and Terri do a great job, this is so awesome. My wife and I thank you so much. But I don’t have that one beat” says Bob. Let’s get her on the scale and just see, she is a long fish also, starting to fatten up for the fall, scales lock it at 3.74…so so close to the leader.

        Next up Brian Abella, NE state winner. Been to the BBWC finals a couple of times now, let’s see what Brian has to say about returning. “Brad, this is awesome, a new lake, a beautiful day, I just wasn’t on them, She is a beaut though!” Brian said. On the scales his fish comes to 3.21 and a great Oklahoma fish.

        Next up is Tom Campbell from MN, and yet again, another multi state champion winner. “I won MN in 2014, I am so glad to be back. I did some research on this lake, I know there are some monsters. But I know there is one larger than this.” Tom said as his fish came on the scale, 4.43 and a new leader and Tom takes over the AnglerNation Hotseat!

       Next up, Bubba Crow, from SC. Bubba caught a huge fish to qualify again for the BBWC. “Mr. Brad, I love this tournament, we all appreciate the hard work you and Terri put into this. One day I’m gonna winner!” Bubba said with a smile as he placed his fish upon the scale. 2.07 is the total, leaving Tom Campbell on the hotseat.

       Next up, Richard Roland qualifying for MT, another multiyear state champion, but also a father qualifying with his son, Cody Roland. “Tough day on the water in the bluebird skies, but someone’s going to win it!” The fish on the scale, a feisty one, is 2.54.

      Kenneth Spicer from the great state of DE on the walk to the stage with a big smile. What is it? Alive and well, but weighing in at 2.55. “At least I got one in!” Kenneth said.

Next to the scale is Michael Carter, winning the state of Kentucky. “I have a good one, but not sure if it will knock Tom off the hotseat over there” Michael stated. Pulling it out and placing it on the scale, the scale stops at 3.88, and not enough to overcome Tom.

      Two anglers remain, and Tom is not looking to calm. What is it going to take to win the 2018 BBWC? Does one of the two anglers left have a larger fish? Let’s see as Graham Howard from KS comes in to weigh. Being close to the lake might have an effect on the BBWC finals, but no world champion has ever been from the state that the finals are held in. Kansas is close, but about a four hour drive, what does Graham have in his bag? On the scales it is 2.85 and not enough to take the lead.

      The final angler to weigh is Louis Tuma, from WI. What does he have in his bag, as Tom Campbell looks on from the hot seat, you can tell his nerves are going now, how big is that fish in the black weigh in bag? Pulling it out and putting on the scale, it come to 2.62 and not enough for the lead.

       Tom Campbell is your 2018 BIG BASS WORLD CHAMPION! Tom’s fish weighs 4.43, and the only four plus pounder weighed in. Good enough for $25,000 and a new WeldCraft Bass Boat, EZ-Trac Trailer, and Suzuki motor!


2nd Place Michael Carter (KY), wins a new Bass Hunter Boat!

3rd Scott Pennington (MS)

4th Bob Wright (IL)

5th Marcel Baker (AL)

6th John Shinn (TX)

7th Jason Jacobs (GA)

8th Brian Abella (NE)

9th Graham Howard (KS)

10th Louis Tuma (WI)

11th Kenneth Spicer (DE)

12th Richard Roland (MT)

13th Jeremy Russell (OR)

14th Bubba Crow (SC)

15th Nikki Delio (ID)

For more on this story, how anglers qualified, and how anglers made the journey, subscribe to BASSIN' and find your BIG BASS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BASSIN' Edition at your local Wal-Mart, Barnes & Nobles, Books-A-Millions, Bass Pro, Cabela's, and many other outdoor retailers!