Kevin VanDam's Advice For Young Fishermen
Editor's Note: Thirty-four-year-old Kevin VanDam, of Kalamazoo, Michigan, was the 2001 BASS Master's Classic Champion and won B.A.S.S. Angler of the Year three times. He competed in the Classic for 12 consecutive years and had six top-10 wins.
Question: What advice would you give a young fisherman if he said to you, "Mr. VanDam, I want to grow up to be a bass pro just like you."
Answer: Well, the most important advice I will tell him is to finish school and probably get a marketing or a sales-type degree. Business education is very important in this industry. That experience is what sponsors are looking for, and you just can't fish successfully without sponsors.
Question: Tell me about the creature bait made by Strike King known as the Wild Thang that you used to win the 2001 BASS Masters Classic? What is the Wild Thang?
Answer: Well, the Wild Thang creature bait is a tube-style lure that has some extra appendages on it. This bait is very bulky. The creature bait is designed as a flipping lure for shallow cover. The Creature Bait is a great lure for swimming around shallow cover when the water is too flat or too clear to throw a spinner bait.
Question: Why do the creature baits attract bass?
Answer: These baits resemble different types of forage -- a bluegill, a shad or a crawfish, depending on what color you use and how you're fishing it. There is a lot of movement to this lure, which is what bass like.