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1. Rules

The intent of all tournament rules is to ensure safety, conservation, good sportsmanship, and fair competition. Federal, State, and Local laws shall take precedence over all tournament rules. Violation of Federal, State, or Local law during tournament hours may result in disqualification. Interpretation of tournament rules shall be the duty of the tournament director.

2. Safety

Safe boating practices must be observed at all times. Competitors must wear a fastened, U.S. Coast Guard approved, personal flotation device anytime the combustion engine is in operation.  Note: An engine is considered to be in operation anytime the propeller is engaged. Tournaments may be shortened, postponed or canceled due to unsafe weather or water conditions at the tournament director’s discretion.
Boats must be a minimum of 12 feet in length and be in sound condition.  Boats between the length of 12 & 15 feet will be required to takeoff last at the start of the tournament due to safety.  Engine must not exceed U.S. Coast Guard horsepower rating. No engine can exceed 250 horsepower regardless of boat horsepower rating. Gas may be purchased on the water, but only from public marinas.
The use of Alcohol or mind-altering substances is strictly forbidden and will result in immediate disqualification.
All boats must maintain a safe distance from all other boats while on plane.

3. Conservation

Competitors and Tournament Directors must make every effort possible to ensure the healthy release of all fish. Tournaments may be postponed or canceled at the tournament director’s discretion due to extreme environmental factors that could adversely affect fish mortality, i.e. excessively high water temperatures.
All boats must contain properly aerated livewell space.
All fish must be released immediately after weigh-in.
Culling of dead fish is prohibited.
1/2 pound per dead fish will be assessed and deducted from a team’s total weight.

4. Good Sportsmanship

Good sportsmanship and courtesy must be maintained and exhibited to all other watercraft and individuals. As natural resources become more limited and public waterways become more crowded, the manner in which all bass fishing tournament participants conduct themselves will have profound consequences for the future of tournament bass fishing. Any competitor that behaves in a manner that reflects poorly on the sport of tournament bass fishing may be disqualified.
No boat may fish within 20 yards of any individual that is fishing.

5. Fair Competition

·          All bass must be caught alive and in a sporting manner. Only artificial lures may be used. Trolling is not permitted. An individual competitor may use only one rod at a time.

·          The tournament limit is five fish. No one may possess more than five fish.

·          Length limit is 14 inches, unless local laws state otherwise.

·          All boats must remain in tournament waters during tournament hours except in the case of an emergency such as severe weather. In the event of severe weather a boat may be trailered and re-launched after conditions have improved.

·          All competitors must remain in their boats during tournament hours except in the case of an emergency such as personal injury, sever weather, or trips to a restroom.

·          All fishing must be done from within the boat while on tournament waters and with both team members present.

·          You may leave the declared water boundaries, by waterways, for each tournament if there are 10 or more teams participating in the tournament. If fewer than 10 boats you must stay within the declared boundaries for that tournament. Boundaries will be posted on website.

·          All boats must check out at the beginning of every tournament and must check in at the end every tournament. Competitors that do not check in at the appointed time will have 1 pound deducted from their total weight for every minute they are late. Competitors more than 15 minutes late will be disqualified.

·          Competitors that fail to check in will be reported to local authorities as missing. It is imperative that competitors not able to finish a tournament notify the tournament director so that all boats can be accounted for at the tournament’s end.

·          Only fish weighed in during official tournament hours, brought in by water. In the event of mechanical breakdown or an emergency competitors may be towed by another boat or enter the boat of another competitor.

·          Ties shall be resolved by the largest fish of each team. The next largest fish will be used in the event of a tie in the in the largest fish and so on until the tie is broken.

·          Each contestant agrees to submit, by their signature on the tournament entry form, to a polygraph examination and abide by its results. Failure to pass the polygraph examination may result in disqualification.


6. Alternate Rule

·          Your partner for the season is whom you declare after the first tournament. Each team is allowed one alternative during the season. Once used you must fish solo if your regular partner cannot make it to the next event.

7. Questionable bass

·          Bass should be measured on the BBL bump board which will be provided in all future tournaments.  This should be done before your bass are brought to the scales for official measurement.  Short fish will accrue a penalty of 1 pound and that bass will not be weighed.  In the event of a dead short fish, the team shall automatically be disqualified.

·          Any bass that appears to have been mangled, mashed, mauled or otherwise altered will be weighed only at the discretion of tournament officials.

Additional Info:
Takeoff: First Light
Weigh-in: 3:00 p.m. at Boat Ramp
License: A Texas license is required
Catch Limit: 5; Size Limit: 14" on all bass with exceptions being Trinity River 12”, Clear Creek 12", Dickinson Bayou 12" & Conroe must be 16"

8. Points System, BBL Championship and B.A.S.S. Team Championship Qualification

·          Points are awarded to a team based on place of finish plus the day’s weight and cannot be combined or transferred. 

·          Events are worth 100 points to first place teams.  Points will be awarded in 2-point decreasing increments.  Contestants not weighing in fish shall receive 4 points less than the lowest placing team to weigh in fish. Three (3) bonus points shall be awarded to the team with the largest bass of each competition.

·          Any angler fishing individually may chose at any time to add a partner and all points earned prior to shall be transferred to the newly formed team.  Two participating individuals can not combine points.

·          Teams disqualified from an event will not receive points for that event.

·          Teams automatically qualify for the BBL Championship by participating in a minimum of 3 of 7 tournaments scheduled for the current season or ranking in the top 10 in points ranking.

·          If BBL accrues a minimum of 50 individual members,

·          Anglers of the Year (AOY) shall be awarded to the team with the highest amount of points accrued throughout the season following the final regular season event and will be officially announced at the BBL Championship.  AOY shall receive automatic bid to BBL Championship and free entry fees for the 2019/2020 Tournament Season.

·          In the event of a tie for AOY, ties will be broken by assessing from the entire season (a) Largest total number of fish weighed, (b) Largest number of live fish weighed, (c) largest individual bass weighed in.

9. Pay Out

·          BBL shall pay out to one (1) team for every five (5) entries for all events. In the event that nine (9) teams enter the competition, an exception shall be made and there will be two (2) paid places.

·          The team with the largest bass for each competition shall be awarded, Big Bass Pot money.

·          An optional Big Redfish Pot may be available at the discretion of the tournament director.

·          The winning team of the BBL Championship will qualify to complete in the B.A.S.S. Team Championship with guaranteed paid entry fee.  First place team shall receive additional money if the standard payout of 1 in 5 exceeds the $500 entry fee value.  The entry fee shall be deducted from BBL Championship entry Fees before any cash prizes will be awarded.  In the event that the winning team forfeits their right to the B.A.S.S. Team Championship bid, they shall be awarded the cash value of the entry fee ($500) and the next finishing team shall be offered the bid without entry fee prize.