My high school doesn’t have a fishing team… now what?
I am here to answer that. My name is Jacob Witkowski out of Atascocita, Texas and I started my own high school team, joined top tier fishing, and am currently fishing at Dallas Baptist University.
So Let’s get into it!
How to Start a High School Bass Team.
The first step is the easiest part of this entire adventure because that is what this will be! The first step will be assembling a group of guys who are as adamant about bass fishing as you are yourself. This helps to separate the work because there will be a lot and helps to create a team that can be shown to the school of the interest involved in the sport.
With step 1 the second part is no doubt the hardest and longest of the entire process that being finding a sponsor for your club. In order to start a club at most high schools, it involves one person from the school sponsoring the program. This does not matter what position they hold teacher, counselor, principal. Usually, if you go and speak to your principal about the start of a program you can find the sponsor that way. Although don’t forget to sell yourself and group during this process. You are introducing a new sport to the school, and you want to give the school attention through this. By assembling a group in the first step this gives you an upper hand in this given part because you at this point already have interest built behind the possible program.
These next steps are the downhill portion of this whole process. Once you have secured your school sponsor the hard work is finished. The next big part is to sign up for your club with B.A.S.S. and F.L.W. this helps to make sure your club is official and these organizations control the majority of the fishing scene. By signing up with these your club becomes qualified to fish their regional tournaments where if you do well can lead the national championship.
This step is making sure you are fishing enough tournaments and gaining enough experience for colleges to start to notice. Once you have signed up with the big organizations you can now sign up with these trickle-down trails through the big organizations. They are usually on their websites and tied to different areas based on your location. The more the better and do what you and your team are capable of competing in and have the funds to do.
Once you have been set-up to fish all of these tournaments. Depending on your situation this may not be a crucial step, but for the vast majority, fishing gets very expensive. A simple tournament turns into a lot of with lodging, food, boat and truck gas, and the entry fee. The best way to raise money and accumulate funds is through gaining sponsors to go on a jersey. Most people try to go to big companies to gain funds, but the best way is to reach out to the neighborhood and gain from your favorite burger joint, the tire shop, or the local grocery store. These local companies are more likely to sponsor local teams and remember from step 2. Sell yourself, sell the team; “we are a team that is looking to represent you on the water and on stage”. This is how you get your name out there to generate funds.
Finally the part we all want to hear. How to take this and all of the experience to the next level and make sure your hard work is not overlooked. The best way to do so is to sign up for Top Tier fishing and get on the national rankings. Although no scholarship is guaranteed this is the best way to get on college coaches radars. Take it from me I signed up for the TTF program, worked my way up to #1 in the country and am now fishing at Dallas Baptist.
If you would like to see this explained in a video head over to our Youtube @TTFnation to see an in-depth video of this process.
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If you have any further questions feel free to dm me on Instagram at @jacob4reel @onedreamfishing