In the past few years, West Alabama has proven that success isn’t only for the big universities. After a back-to-back GSC football championship and the continuing success from all in-season sports, UWA’s fishing team added another championship for the university on Saturday when they tied for first place against Oklahoma at the Bassmaster Classic.
Out of the entire UWA Bass team, Andrew Warbington was chosen after a “fish-off” tournament to compete in the 2014 Bassmaster College Series in Birmingham, Ala. Warbington’s partner Mitch Brumbeloe was voted to compete as well by his fellow UWA fishermen. Brumbeloe and Warbington have been fishing their entire lives, yet this win has stolen the spotlight in their fishing career.
“Feels pretty good,” says Warbington when asked how it feels to place at the highest rank over the bigger colleges. “I’m pretty speechless, so feels good pretty much sums it all up.”
“I came to UWA, expecting it to be a small school and to fish as a small school against bigger schools. Beating bigger schools like Alabama and Auburn is a dream come true,” adds Brumbeloe.
Warbington and Brumbeloe competed with bigger universities such as Auburn, Alabama, UNA, Montevallo and, previous Bassmaster champs, Oklahoma on Lay Lake. The two totaled 16 pounds after catching five fish, which was the winning number for the competition.
“We had a six pounder, a two and a half pounder and the others were ranging from three to four pounds,” says Mitch.
During the last few minutes of the tournament, UWA’s pair of fishermen reeled in their biggest fish of the day that in the end was a big help for their tournament weigh in.
When Warbington and Brumbeloe heard their names, the only word that can sum up their feelings from that very moment is shocked.
“We were going in with hopes of winning,” says Mitch. “We went in thinking we were going to at least catch fish and walk across the stage. Winning was a dream.”