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Bass Pro Shops School Of The Year Presented By Abu Garcia Mid-Season Rankings Review: Teams 1st-5th

San Antonio, TX – This is the final article in a three-part series highlighting the current rankings for the 2023-24 Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. We will take a look at the teams ranked 1st-5th in college fishing’s only all-encompassing National Rankings system.

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1) University of Montevallo

13,560 points

The University of Montevallo is currently ranked number one in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. Montevallo achieved collegiate bass fishing history in 2023 by becoming the first team ever to win the title three times (2021, 2022, 2023).

Through the mid-way point in the 2023-24 season, Montevallo has earned a season total of 13,560 points. That points total has them just over 500 points ahead of second ranked Carson-Newman University.

Montevallo has earned points at a total of eight events to count towards the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. The worst points qualifying finish they had across those eight events was 25th. In total, they’ve won four tournaments, and had at least one team in the Top 5 at three other events.



“Once everyone got into tournament mode…it’s been the typical Montevallo way, guys catching them in every tournament…day in and day out,” said Tyler Cory, Montevallo angler. “Everyone is really fired up to be back on top, and we just hope that we can ride this wave all the way through.”

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2) Carson-Newman University

12,980 points

The second ranked team in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia is Carson-Newman University. With a season total of 12,980 points, Carson-Newman trails Montevallo by just over 500 points, and is clear of third ranked University of North Alabama by just over 700 points.

In 2023, Carson-Newman achieved its highest-ever end of season ranking for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. The team from Tennessee finished the 2022-23 campaign ranked third. Entering this year, they were selected as the fourth ranked team in the ACA Pre-Season Poll.

Carson-Newman started off the fall swing on the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series with a strong showing. The team’s two biggest fish at the Bass Pro Shops Big Bass Bash presented by Berkley finished in fourth and a tie for sixth. Those two Top 10 big bass earned Carson-Newman a total of 3,420 points. That is the highest points total earned by any one school at the first ACA event of the season.



At the AFTCO Collegiate Bass Open on Lake Dardanelle, Carson-Newman earned a total of 3,390 points. Hayden Gaddis & Ben Cully finished in sixth, and Storm Cline & Gavin Clevenger took seventh.

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3) University of North Alabama

12,285 points

The University of North Alabama is a two-time past winner for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia (2014, 2015). After a few down years in recent history, per their program’s standards, UNA is experiencing a strong resurgence this season. The team from Florence, AL is currently ranked third with 12,285 points.

“We’re all pretty jacked up about it, but we’ve got a lot of work to do,” said Carter Nutt, UNA angler. “That’s really our goal for the rest of the season, to have two in the Top 10 at every event.”

While they didn’t place two teams in the Top 10 at every major event throughout the fall in 2023, UNA had very strong showings. Here is a look at UNA’s top two finishing teams at each major, double points event through the first half of the season:

Bassmaster College Series National Championship: 12th, 26th

Bass Pro Shops Big Bass Bash presented by Berkley: 5th, 12th

AFTCO Collegiate Bass Open: 21st, 22nd

MLF College Series at Lake Hartwell: 7th, 42nd



UNA anglers earned over 3,000 points at each of the two ACA major double points events this past fall.

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4) Auburn University

11,725 points

Auburn University entered the 2023-24 season ranked number one in the ACA Pre-Season Poll for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. Six months into the current season, the team from Auburn, AL finds itself in fourth place with 11,725 points. Just over 1,800 points behind top ranked Montevallo, Auburn is within striking distance of finishing the year ranked number one for the first time in school history.

Auburn came into the 2023-24 campaign following back-to-back second place finishes (2022, 2023). Auburn anglers have earned points at a total of eight events this season.

Hayden Marbut and Tucker Smith propelled Auburn to an early hot start by winning the Bassmaster College Series National Championship back in August. Auburn’s next highest-finishing team at that event placed 51st. Those two top finishes earned the team a total of 3,285 points.

Auburn anglers earned 3,030 points at the Bass Pro Shops Big Bass Bash presented by Berkley, and 2,750 points at the AFTCO Collegiate Bass Open. These marks are both just a hair behind those from each of the three teams ranked ahead of them to this point.

Auburn is one of three teams ranked in the Top 5 looking to claim its first ever title for the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

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5) McKendree University 

11,470 points

Rounding out the Top 5 in this rankings reveal is McKendree University. The two-time title winner (2020, 2021) has earned a season total of 11,470 points and is ranked fifth in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

Through the years, McKendree University has established itself as one of the powerhouse teams in collegiate bass fishing. The team from Illinois was selected fifth in the ACA Pre-Season Poll prior to the start of the 2023-24 season.

Since 2018, McKendree University has not finished a season ranked outside of the Top 5 in the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia.

McKendree is currently joined by UNA and Montevallo as one of three teams to ever finish the season ranked number one on multiple occasions. This season, McKendree could join Montevallo in the record books as the only team to ever win the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia three times.

Through the first half of the 2023-24 season, McKendree University has earned over 2,000 points at every major, double points event. They currently sit just over 2,000 points behind top ranked Montevallo and a little more than 150 points ahead of sixth ranked Murray State University. McKendree University will need to get off to a strong start to the spring season to continue to have a shot at achieving collegiate bass fishing history this year.

The Association of Collegiate Anglers (ACA) is a division of CarecoTV that was created to facilitate growth, development, and structure within competitive collegiate bass fishing, with emphasis on competitive fishing events nationwide. The ACA created the original BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Series 19 seasons ago. That single event has evolved into the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series, which is now recognized as the longest-running consecutive collegiate bass fishing series in existence.

The ACA lineup of major college fishing events includes a variety of tournaments nationwide that are multi-day tournaments, all of which are televised on several networks, as well as streamed on a variety of connected platforms.  The ACA also provides support to numerous schools operating regional events nationwide which is an effort to provide more opportunities to grow the exposure and awareness of college fishing.

About The Association of Collegiate Anglers (ACA)

The ACA owns the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series, Bass Pro Shops School of Year presented by Abu Garcia program, and associated assets which is widely regarded as the most comprehensive and prestigious collegiate bass fishing title today. 

Thanks in part to the large diversity of media exposure the ACA provides, the series boasts the largest amount of televised and streaming coverage of any collegiate fishing series. This includes a dedicated television series on numerous television networks and streaming platforms, as well as additional coverage of select events inside other programs. 

This combination includes coverage from Discovery Channel, CBS Sports, Bally Sports, Pursuit Channel, as well as other regional and national networks. You can also find coverage online at any time of past events thanks to coverage on OutdoorActionTV.com and PursuitUp.com

For more information on the ACA or the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series, visit www.CollegiateBassChampionship.com

 For more information on CarecoTV, visit www.CarecoTV.com

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