If you don’t know the name Kris Wilson, you better familiarize yourself. He’s the best Minor angler is the world.
Outside of his own state, many anglers probably haven’t heard of the angler from Montgomery, Texas. However, after the FLW EverStart at Lake of the Pines this past weekend, he finally qualified his fifth tournament in two years. And in doing so, he showcased what an impressive two years it’s been.
Wilson debuted at No. 1 in the Minors-Only World Ranking with a staggering 954.779. How do you pull off a number that high? In the five tournaments he’s fished in the last two years (four this year, one in 2011) his worst finish is 18th at the FLW EverStart at Lake Amistad earlier this year. All the rest have been top 10s, including a victory at Sam Rayburn in 2011 and a fourth this past weekend at Lake of the Pines.
There are some great Minor anglers in Texas, but there’s a new one sitting atop the mountain right now.
Now, the Lake of the Pines event wasn’t the only one over the weekend. There was also a BASS Open on Lewis Smith Lake, and that’s the event that caused another shake-up in the top 10.
Kip Carter of Loganville, Ga., finished 78th at the tournament, slipping him from third in the rankings to just outside the top 10, in 12th.
Throw in the fact that Russell Cecil of Willis, Texas, finished ninth at Lake of the Pines and now sits in ninth in the rankings, and it was one busy week in the Minors rankings.
But we’re just getting started.
Former Elite Series pro Mark Tucker of St. Louis, Mo., dropped a 2010 event last week and jumped from 41st to 15th, while Brandon McMillan of Clewiston, Fla., also got into the top 20 (19th, actually) this week via the same scenario.
Now, there were quite a few changes in the top 20, but the 20s, themselves, have seen an upheaval.
Hank Cherry of Maiden, N.C., used his victory this weekend at Lewis Smith to catapult him from 38th to 21st. Meanwhile, James Charlesworth of St. Cloud, Fla., didn’t do near as well as Cherry at Lewis Smith, but it was his fifth event, allowing him to debut right behind him in 23rd. And behind him, another former Elite Series angler, James Stricklin of Texarkana, Ark., debuted in 24th, though he will probably disappear from the rankings later this month when a 2010 tournament drops off. Shane Lineberger of Lincolnton, N.C., jumped from 44th to 27th, and Todd Castledine of Nacogdoches, Texas, slipped from 18th to 29th.
Phew! You get all that?
No way I’m overloading you with more of that. Besides, with so many people moving into the top 30, a lot of anglers shifted backwards through no fault of their own. So here are some other notable moves and debuts from the rest of the top 50: Jeremy Guidry of Opelausas, La., (20th to 31st), Jamey Caldwell of Carthage, N.C. (debuted at 38th), Keith Pace of Monticello, Ark., (30th to 43rd) and Jason Lambert of Pickwick Dam, Tenn., (35th to 51st).
Now that’s one busy week in the Minors!