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2022-23 Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia Pre-Season Poll: Rankings 16th – 20th

Teams Ranked 16TH – 20TH are revealed as the Association of Collegiate Anglers provides the results from its annual pre-season poll

Published by: Kyle Curry
July 19, 2022
Association of Collegiate Anglers

San Antonio, TX (7/19/2022) – The Association of Collegiate Anglers, which operates the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, is excited to showcase the pre-season rankings for college bass fishing according to a voting poll of top coaches, schools, media personnel, and fishing industry personalities with experience in college fishing.

This poll is a one of a kind poll, similar to rankings in other college sports, that will help kick off the season-long race for the prestigious School of the Year title. Every day this week the ACA will count down and showcase teams that made it into the Top 25, and then in the near future the first rankings for the 2022-23 season. Today’s article will show teams that were selected 16th to 20th in the pre-season rankings.

16. East Texas Baptist University
Marshall, TX
2022 Final Ranking: 22nd

Kicking off the rankings reveal for teams voted 16th through 20th in the ACA pre-season poll is East Texas Baptist University. East Texas Baptist finished the 2021-22 season in 22nd and has been picked 16th overall entering the new year.

During the 2021-22 season, ETBU started the year off strong at Lake Dardanelle during the ACA ran AFTCO Collegiate Bass Open. The team from Marshall, TX earned a total of 2,310 points at the first ACA event of the season. Team members Jacob Keith and Brett Jolley were the highest finishing anglers at the event. The duo finished in fifth place out of the more than 200 hundred boat field. Along with the valuable prizes and points earned by Keith and Jolley, the team earned an automatic qualification spot into the 2022 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops.

East Texas Baptist has a deep roster of anglers that are capable of catching bass at any fishery across the country. Look for that depth to play a key factor in ETBU’s push to finish the year ranked high up in the standings for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

17. Tarleton State University
Stephenville, TX
2022 Final Ranking: 18th

Next up on the list is Tarleton State University. Located in Stephenville, TX, Tarleton State finished the 2021-22 season ranked 18th overall. Entering the 2022-23 Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, Tarleton State has been pegged as the 17th best team in the nation.

“Being ranked in the Top 20 has a lot of our members motivated to make as many events as possible,” said Clay Osteen, a member of the Tarleton State Bass Fishing Team. “With us being solely funded by the members of the club, we have seen the amount of dedication our guys are willing to put in outside of tournaments to create funding to travel. We have a really strong freshman class again this year so we’re hoping to continue to move up and get back in the Top 10.”

Tarleton State has grown into a perennial Top 25 team in collegiate bass fishing. The 2021-22 season marks the fifth time in school history that the team from Stephenville has finished the season ranked in the Top 25 for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

The 2021 ACA pre-season poll was the first time the ACA had conducted a survey of this kind to rank the Top 25 teams in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. In the 2022 edition, Tarleton State was selected 11th overall. The team then went on to finish the 2021-22 season with a national ranking of 18th. Starting the season off picked 17th in the 2022 pre-season poll, Tarleton State is hoping to make a run at the title.

“Our goal this year is obviously to make a run at the SOY title. We have really talented anglers who all have the confidence that we can compete against any other university in the country,” added Osteen. “We really want to focus on taking everything one tournament at a time and focus on doing the best we can in each event.”

18. Catawba Valley Community College
Hickory, NC
2022 Final Ranking: 15th

Catawba Valley Community College checks in at 18th in the nation, matching the team’s 2021 pre-season poll ranking. Coming off of a 15th place ranking in the 2021-22 season, CVCC hopes to again outperform pre-season rankings placed upon them by coaches, anglers, media members, and industry representatives.

“For such a young program to be recognized as a Top 20 team is amazing! Our anglers have put in a lot of hard work and dedication to get us where we are and I give all the credit to them,” said Angela Mayo, CVCC Bass Fishing Team Coach. “It has truly been my pleasure to work with them these past three years and to watch them grow into the confident young men that they are today.”

Catawba Valley Community College competed in all three ACA events last season. The team earned over 4,700 points combined from those three events, making up close to half of CVCC’s season points total.

Located in Hickory, NC, the CVCC campus sits just two and a half hours away from Green Pond Landing, the weigh-in site for the 2023 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops set to take place at Lake Hartwell in Anderson, SC on May 25-26, 2023. Catawba Valley Community College enters the 2022-23 season with the goal of finishing the season as high up in the standings as possible and cracking the Top 10 close to home at the end of the year-long race.

“I would love to see the Red Hawks break in to the Top 10 this coming year. We have so much support for this program here at CVCC – from our President, Dr. Hinshaw, our AD, Nick Schroeder, our SID, Cody Dalton, our CVCC Foundation members and the entire fishing community,” added Mayo. “I want to continue to build on what we have started here and have a program that the entire Red Hawk Nation is proud to be a part of!”

19. Wabash Valley College
Mt. Carmel, IL
2022 Final Ranking: 14th

Wabash Valley College finished the 2021-22 season of the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia ranked 14th and will enter the 2022-23 race with a pre-season ranking of 16th.

“It excites me that we have received a pre-season ranking in the Top 20 in the nation,” noted Todd Gill, Head Coach of the WVC Bass Fishing Team. “After finishing 20th in our first season and following that up with 14th this past season, I feel like we have proven that we are a program that is here to stay. Being consistently there will not only help our program continue to grow but will also help our anglers who desire to transfer to another college for their junior and senior seasons to slide right into another program and compete.”

As is a common theme with the teams that finish high up in the national rankings year in and year out, Wabash Valley College competed in all three ACA events last season. The highest finish of any WVC team at an ACA ran event came at the 2022 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops at Pickwick Lake. Drew Gill and Jonah Potts finished in eighth place out of the nation’s top teams. That Top 10 finish helped to cement WVC’s place inside of the Top 20 for last season.

Entering the 2022-23 race for Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, Wabash Valley College is gearing up to finish the year inside of the Top 10.

“Our primary goal this year is to get Wabash Valley College inside the Top 10 for School of the Year,” added Gill. “With the new points system in place, I have already challenged our anglers to work on being more consistent in their finishes from event to event, as we are going to need two quality finishes at every tournament to accomplish that goal. Pre-tournament preparation and working together more on practice days will be necessary for us to break into the Top 10.”

20. Kentucky Christian University
Grayson, KY
2022 Final Ranking: 21st

Rounding out this rankings reveal is Kentucky Christian University. The team from Grayson, KY has received a pre-season ranking of 20th overall. After finishing the 2021-22 season in 21st, anglers, coaches, media members, and industry representatives expect Kentucky Christian to finish the upcoming season inside of the Top 20 for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

Anglers representing Kentucky Christian competed in the 2022 BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops. Gunner Whitaker and Mitch Johnson were in third place after Day 1 and finished the ACA National Championship in seventh.

Kentucky Christian has a chance to make another large leap up in the standings this year as the ACA is set to hold two events on Kentucky Lake in Paris, TN this upcoming season. The fall installment of the Bass Pro Shops Big Bass Bash presented by Berkley will be contested on September 17-18, 2022. In March of 2023, the ACA will return again for the regularly scheduled Big Bass Bash on March 11-12.

With two double points events set to take place close to the school’s campus, Kentucky Christian could make up significant ground in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia and attain the school’s highest-ever end of year ranking.

The Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, operated by the Association of Collegiate Anglers (ACA), is college fishing’s only all-encompassing national rankings system. Started in 2012, the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year awards points to student anglers for competing in a variety of events throughout the year, providing updated rankings for all college fishing teams and highlighting the Top 25 teams in the standings through a variety of media assets. The list of events that comprise the rankings includes National Championships, major national level events, regional trails, school-run events and much more. To find out more about the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia, click here.

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