On Any Given Sunday

By Bruce Callis

April 14,2017

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The Bassmaster Elite at Toledo Bend presented by Econo Lodge is in the books. John Murray got to raise the trophy high over his head for his first elite victory. What an awesome thrill! But victory wasn’t as easy as you would think for this 11 year veteran.
Day 1 started off fairly nice, with John catching a 5 fish limit of 17 lbs 13 ounces and was holding onto 14th place. He was only a little over 7 pounds out of 1st place. But day 2 was a tough one, with John only bringing in a 5 fish limit of 11 pounds 7 ounces, dropping him into 34th place, almost 10 pounds out of 1st place. But it was enough to get him into the all important 3rd day, and John made the most of it. He was able to turn things around with a huge 23 pound 7 ounce bag, leaping him all the way up to 3rd place and a spot on Championship Sunday. John put together another impressive bag for the second day in a row, amassing 24 pounds 15 ounces to slam the door shut. He had 2 big beauties to fill out Sunday’s bag, a 7 lb 7 oz and a 7 lb 9 oz bass.
This marks the 4th tournament, including the Classic, this year and the 4th winner. No one angler has been in the zone on 2 consecutive tournaments. But what each tournament has in common is that the winners never gave up. Adversity came to each of them and they didn’t quit.
On any given day, we can all put together that magical day, where we can do no wrong. And sometimes, we can go out and find that the bass just don’t like anything we offer. Practice doesn’t always lead to perfection in the bass fishing world. It can humble us beyond imagination.
We go out and practice for an upcoming tournament, we find the fish we are looking for, and then on tournament day, they are no longer there. We know they should be, we fish looking for them to be there, and we come away scratching our heads. Why? Because we get dialed in and refuse to admit that what we knew isn’t the answer anymore. We refuse to overcome, to adapt.
Jacob Wheeler overcame boat issues, Timmy Horton overcame losing a giant bass, and John Murray overcame lost fish as well.
Being able to change our thinking when everything is falling apart isn’t easy. Fishing is about learning patterns, and adapting our to put them to our best advantage. We don’t want anyone to thing we can’t do it. But making the most of what we have isn’t a weakness, its a strength. To trust our gut instincts when our brain says otherwise. We give up searching because we know what they are doing instead of searching because the conditions have changed.
I plead guilty as charged. I’ve done it way too often. Throw out the rule book when it happens. Just go fishing instead. Have fun doing what we love. For any given day, we may find glory, the day we always dream of when fishing. And we too can lift that trophy high.

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