Here's how to watch (and what to watch for in) the 2018 GEICO Bassmaster Classic in South Carolina.
While a lot of the country spends their time watching the annual college basketball tournament this weekend, the outdoor world is focusing on Lake Hartwell in Greenville, South Carolina and the Bassmaster Classic, pro bass fishing's biggest event of the year.
For those interested in following along live, the entire Bassmaster Classic will be live streamed online at the Bassmaster.com website. Each day (Friday, March 16 through Sunday, March 18) will feature live video from 8-11 a.m. and 12-3 p.m. ET, as well as live weigh-ins starting at 3:50 p.m. ET.
Thanks to a multiyear renewal deal signed last February, the Bassmaster Classic (and other Bassmaster events) will also be available to ESPN subscribers on the network's WatchESPN and ESPN app.
What to Expect
A lot of folks, including Bassmaster.com themselves, are reporting the dependency on Lake Hartwell's blueback herring population, which might be a deciding factor in the Classic. Morning bites, as those herring head to shallow water tend to encourage, will be vital in this year's tournament.
A warming trend in the area will likely lead a lot of traditional offshore fishermen to the shallow shores, following the place the fish are probably going to be.
Greg Hackney and Jason Christie rank towards the high end of the best shallow water pros in the Classic this year. Hometown boy Casey Ashley, who won the 2015 Classic on Lake Hartwell, will surely let his experience take control, and Edwin Evers is worth keeping an eye on. Jacob Foutz from Bryan College will join the big boys after winning the 2017 Carhartt College Classic. Perennial favorite Kevin VanDam will surely end among the top finishers,
Jordan Lee took last year's win at Lake Conroe, and James Elam, who I got to spend a little time with a couple years ago on a media trip, would be the upset pick. He only has two Classics under his belt, but an outside chance to upset the field.
Follow along and see who comes out victorious in this year's Classic, and etches their name among the greats of professional bass fishing.