NATCHITOCHES – A Northwestern State University club hopes to lure in prospective students interested in one of the fastest-growing collegiate team club sports. The NSU Fishing Team is open to all students and taps into the growing popularity of organized competitive bass fishing. The team will compete in FLW, B.A.S.S. and Collegiate Bass circuits.
“Fishing is becoming a huge sport for high school students and Northwestern State has an 11-member fishing team and tons of bass fishing around the area,” said Jana Lucky, director of University Recruiting. “We want to be the choice for fisherman across Louisiana and out of state.”
The club is an opportunity for a student to get involved on a competitive level in a healthy and enjoyable lifetime sport. Juddy Hamous who works in Facility Services at NSU, is the club’s advisor. He got involved because his son Cain was part of a team at Natchitoches Central High School before enrolling at Northwestern. He said the waterways in and around Natchitoches make it a popular sportsman’s destination.
“Bass fishing has always been here and it’s being promoted heavily now by professional fisherman, by boat manufacturers and circuits. It used to be more for professionals but since it’s been targeted to youth, it has just exploded,” Hamous said. The NSU Fishing Team has 11 current members and although having a boat is not an absolute necessity, it is helpful. “We want NSU to be the place fishermen want to go after high school. We have good organization with lots of local kids from Natchitoches, Sabine and Grant parishes, who are familiar with local lakes and rivers.”
Johnny Ledet of Raceland is a business management major who has been fishing all his life and took up bass fishing at 14. He found out about the NSU Fishing Team through is friend Cain Hamous. The best things about the sport are being outdoors on the water and spending time with buddies, he said. Catching the fish is a bonus. Other students have asked him about the team.
“Learning to fish at a competitive level, as opposed to fishing for fun, is more focused, when the intent is to catch fish on a schedule,” Ledet said. “It’s fun to do something you love and compete at it.”
When a recent high school fishing tournament was held on Red River, the NSU Fishing Team manned a booth to distribute information to prospective students about the team and the attractive waterways in the area, Cane River, Red River, Toledo Bend Reservoir and Black Lake. Hamous expects interest in the team to increase.
“With fishing growing like it is, we think it can really catch fire,” he said.
Hamous, who is also president of the Provencal Bass Club, the largest fishing club in Louisiana, said the sport is appealing because “you are competing against yourself and you are competing against the fish. It’s good clean fun.”
For more information on the NSU Fishing Team, email Hamous at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (318) 332.0565. Information is also available at recruiting.nsula.edu/fish.