Kentucky becomes second state to make bass fishing a high school sport

Prep Rally

If you're a high school student in Kentucky who enjoys fishing, you'll soon get an opportunity to put your skills to the test against some of the best young anglers, after the state announced bass fishing would become a sanctioned prep sport.

As and other national media outlets reported, Kentucky will join Illinois as the second state to sponsor a high school bass fishing state championship, starting next April.

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"I think it's fantastic. The earlier the exposure to bass fishing the better," Matt Luken told "I talk to people all the time that wished they had bass fishing in college. We can say the same thing that we wish we had it in high school."

Kentucky's High School Athletic Association announced back in February that bass fishing, bowling and competitive cheer would be added as sports in the coming year.

The current competitive format would have two student-anglers fish from a boat that's driven by an adult. The best five fish for each team member would be added up to determine a winner based on total weight. All fish will then be released after the weigh-in.

"It's one of those programs that initially people kind of laugh about and go, 'Oh, you're kidding me,'" Dave Gannaway, who helped Illinois high schools get a bass fishing championship, told

But the sport is no joke. States like Kentucky and Illinois have been adding different sports to the usual rotation over the last couple of years. Arizona became the first state to make beach volleyball a sanctioned high school sport just last year.

Honestly, I think adding bass fishing is a great idea. So long as high schools are willing and able to field a team, I could definitely see this taking off. Illinois announced last year that they've gone from 99 high school bass fishing teams to 232 in the past four years.

If anything, the sport gives other students that don't want to play baseball or football as chance to compete in a sport on the high school level against their peers. And that's never a bad thing.

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