Don Doty – A Classic Qualification from the Back Seat

Photo January/February 1981 issue of Western Bass magazine.

Photo January/February 1981 issue of Western Bass magazine.

To many of you here reading this, the name Don Doty won’t mean much at all. In fact, his name hasn’t been associated with the sport since the late 80s. Even though his name is only recognized by a few older western anglers and maybe a few of the older Bassmaster pros, he will always be remembered for a record he holds that will never be broken.

Don Doty is the only angler to qualify for a Bassmaster Classic as a pure non-boater.

In the old days, when pro-on-pro draw tournaments existed, many times when the draw for partners happened, both anglers had a boat. There were a few methods in which the two anglers decided which boat would be used. For example, if one angler could convince the other he had better fish going, they might opt to use that anglers’ boat. Another method was, if you drew Roland Martin, Jimmy Houston or Ricky Green, there was no argument, you fished out of their boat. The other method was a coin toss. [Read more…]

How They Began – John Murray

John Murray holds one of his numerous western trophies after winning yet another western event. Photo courtesy of Bill Rice.

John Murray holds one of his numerous western trophies after winning yet another western event. Photo courtesy of Bill Rice.

To folks east of the Mississippi the name John Murray probably rings a bell as an angler who came out east in the late 90s with anglers such as Skeet Reese, Aaron Martens and Byron Velvick. They know he’s won a couple events, generally makes the Classic and probably also know him as a better deep-water angler who’s always in contention when the tour travels to the northern-tier lakes or southern highland impoundments such as Smith Lake. This is all correct but there’s actually a lot more to John Murray than those stats.

In all actuality, Murray’s been fishing professionally since 1985 when his early mentor Art Price told him to leave the tackle shop he was working at. Since then he’s won 31 boats, fished 7 Bassmaster Classics and won the U.S. Open on Lake Mead twice. He’s fished every major tournament trail and a number of regional trails over the course of his 29-year career and overall he’s won nearly $2-million dollars casting for cash. Yes, he’s been around a while. [Read more…]