FLORENCE, AL – Last week marked the end of competition in the 2019-2020 season on the Bass Pro Shops Collegiate Bass Fishing Series. With that comes the culmination of the chase for the prestigious Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia. Defending title holders McKendree University entered this week with a roughly 1,200 point lead and their sights set on winning the title in back-to-back years.
Buoyed by two Top 20 finishes this week in the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops, McKendree locked up the School of the Year title winning by a margin of 1,000 points. “I’m just thrilled, and we’re really blessed. Our goal after last year was to come back here and try for this again,” said Jon Rinderer, Head Bass Fishing Coach at McKendree University. “The kids were consistent all year. We got the job done, so I’m super thrilled. Couldn’t be more proud of this group of kids.”
Following a strong Day 1 at the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship presented by Bass Pro Shops, McKendree entered Day 2 with two teams inside of the Top 20. When the scales closed on Day 2, their top two teams finished in 9th & 18th. Trevor McKinney & Blake Jackson finished in 9th with 31.98 pounds, and Bailey Bleser & Nate Doty wound up in 18th at 28.72 pounds.
“You know, we were in these same shoes last year. We’ve had a great year this year, and our biggest thing was we wanted that feeling again,” noted McKendree team member Blake Jackson. “We caught ’em again this year and we’re just really blessed. If we would have slipped up in this event, the leaderboard could have made some major changes this year.” McKendree University becomes the second team in the history of the Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia to claim back-to-back titles.
Here is a look at the Top 25 for the 2020 Bass Pro Shops School of the Year presented by Abu Garcia: