Serving Kentucky's Schools and Student Athletes Since 1917

05/09/12 – Update on New Bass Fishing Championship

May 9, 2012 Bass Fishing Blog Updates


Ahoy Mates! Since the announcement in February that we were sponsoring a bass fishing championship, the questions have rolled in fast and furious. We have worked with the great folks at FLW, as well as very helpful reps of BASS Federation Nation and other groups to try and ensure that the championship is done in a manner that will stir excitement for all, ensure safety for all competitors, a participation opportunity for students, not effect those already participating in fishing activities, and promote an awareness of the great natural resources we have available. With that in mind, this is the first of a series of posts as we work toward implementation of our first championship in April of 2013. As more becomes available, we will post both here and online on our web site.
Common Questions (as of May, 2012)
This list will be updated as topics are resolved. Keep
in mind that there are various approval requirements for much of the
information, and final determinations may not be available until May, 2012 or
July, 2012
Is the KHSAA now sponsoring a Bass Fishing
Yes, in 2012-2013, the KHSAA will conduct a Bass
Fishing championship. Competition will be held in a single division, with
appropriate assignments to regions once participation numbers are determined.
With the KHSAA now sponsoring a Bass Fishing
championship, does that make Bass Fishing exactly the same as all other sports
and activities within the school?
The management of individual teams within a school is a
local decision. School administrators will decide about issues such as
compensation, travel allowances and other benefits in compliance with federal,
state and locally adopted policies. Nothing about the KHSAA adding this sport
activity makes anything “automatic” within a school or school district.
How is Bass Fishing going to be managed within the
The Commissioner will appoint an Assistant Commissioner
to be the day-to-day liaison for Bass Fishing within the office.
An Advisory committee will also be appointed by the
Commissioner to help with the implementation and management of the
championship. This committee may be divided into sub-committees to perform
various functions throughout the year related to the championships. The names
and demographic information about the Advisory Committee will be posted on the
KHSAA web site.
Where will all of the rules be printed about the Bass
Fishing championship?
Each August, the KHSAA produces its Handbook, which
includes Tournament Rules for all sports and sport-activities. When finalized,
these rules will be published in the Handbook, placed on the KHSAA web site,
and distributed to all member schools.
Any discussion that necessitates an amendment to the
KHSAA Constitution or Bylaws will be properly submitted through the Board of
Control and appear on the agenda of the Annual Meeting of the member schools in
How does a school get a boat?
Any volunteer your school administration finds
acceptable may provide a boat. Each school will simply be responsible for
ensuring that there is a boat provided, with an adult driver. The boat owner
shall provide proof of liability insurance to the school administration or
verification that the owner’s homeowners insurance has provisions for boat
Additionally, The Bass Federation (TBF) has numerous
clubs across the state that have offered their services to the schools as have
individuals from the B.A.S.S. Federation Nation. Additionally, there are likely
other bass fishing clubs affiliated with other organizations from across the
state that will offer their services to schools.A list of the bass clubs and
organizations as well as contact information will be posted on the KHSAA
Are there requirements of students?
Each student must possess a currently valid Kentucky fishing
license. Each student must become a member of the Student Angler Federation.
The annual membership fee is $25 and includes all necessary liability insurance,
including the option to name the school as additionally insured. Students may
join the SAF at
What about insurance for fishing?
Membership in the Student Angler Federation provides
insurance coverage for all team activities throughout the membership term. The
schools and students will be responsible for any equipment related insurance
and other necessary insurance just as in any other sport or sport activity the
KHSAA conducts. All member schools are reminded to take precautionary steps to
ensure that all equipment and product safety risk measures are taken including
insurance coverage. The KHSAA will also have catastrophic coverage for both the
regional and state tournaments.
Are there restrictions on the use of the motor(s) or
the speed of the boat?
No student will be allowed to operate the outboard
motor on the boat. Either a student or the coach (or other permitted person if
it is the boat owner) may operate the trolling motor. The coach (or other
permitted person if it is the boat owner) will be responsible for operating the
outboard motor. The boat must observe all posted state and local speed
restrictions. If no such restrictions are in place, the speed limit shall be 35
miles per hour.
What are the restrictions on actions by coaches during
the competition?
The captain/coach of the boat may make suggestions but
may not fish in any respect, including tying lures, netting fish, and handling
fish or gear. The captain/coach or team participants can operate the electric motor.
What happens to the fish after competition?
The total weight for each of the five (5) fish limited
to that boat will count for the team total of that tournament. All fish will be
released immediately after weigh-in. All fish that are put in the livewell must
be kept alive. Dead fish will have a ½ pound deduction and cannot count as the
large fish for that boat. Dead fish may not be culled. There will be a speed
limit enforced at all sectional and state final tournaments. The speed limit
will be no faster than 35 mph, or the lake requirement will be enforced if
slower than 35 mph.
When is the first date of practice?
The first official date of practice for Bass Fishing
will be twenty-one days prior to the regional competition for each school. This
is solely to define a period for the Catastrophic Insurance. There will not be
a designated season for Bass Fishing. Team members and coaches may compete in
other fishing competitions throughout the year.
What is the maximum number of Bass Fishing competitions?
There will be no maximum number of competitions as this
sport activity will not have a specifically defined season due to constantly
changing availability of fish in Kentucky’s
lakes, rivers and streams.
When does the Bass Fishing season end?
The defined season ends for Bass Fishing with the State
Championship. Team members and coaches may compete in other fishing
competitions throughout the year.
Will there be a limit on team size for Bass Fishing?
No. There are not team size limits in any KHSAA sport
or sport-activity. However, individual competitions will likely (as will KHSAA)
limit the number of competitors in a given division or within a defined
competition area.
Which KHSAA Bylaws ARE applicable to Bass Fishing?
Currently, the following KHSAA Bylaws apply to Bass
Fishing teams and all other sport activities –
Bylaw 1 (Responsibility for Eligibility);
Bylaw 2 (Physician’s & Parental Consent Form and
Insurance requirement);
Bylaw 3 (Age, per state law);
Bylaw 5 (Minimum Academic Requirement);
Bylaw 9 (Other Eligibility Requirements and
Bylaw 11 (Practice of Sportsmanship);
Bylaw 14 (Protests);
Bylaw 15 (Request for Rulings);
Bylaw 16 (Protests);
Bylaw 17 (Supplying Information);
Bylaw 18 (Countersigning Contracts);
Bylaw 19 (Submission of Reports);
Bylaw 20 (Member of Faculty to Accompany team);
Bylaw 21 (Compliance with NFHS Rules);
Bylaw 23 (Sanctioning and approval of out of state
Bylaw 24 (Forfeits);
Bylaw 25 (Limitation of Season);
Bylaw 26 (Summer Activities);
Bylaw 27 (Coaching Requirements);
Bylaw 28 (Distribution of Tournament Profits);
Bylaw 29 (Officials Division);
Bylaw 30 (Coaches not to officiate) and
Bylaw 33 (Penalties)
Which KHSAA Bylaws ARE NOT applicable to Bass Fishing?
Bylaw 4 (Enrollment);
Bylaw 6 (Transfer Rule);
Bylaw 7 (Non-Domestic Students);
Bylaw 8 (Contestant on Other Teams);
Bylaw 12 (Amateur and Awards);
Bylaw 13 (Financial Aid);
Bylaw 22 (Specific Sport Regulations);
Bylaw 31 (Use of Licensed Officials) and
Bylaw 32 (Agreement regarding professional baseball)
Competition Rules (Bylaw 21)
Unless and until the NFHS addresses the issue of
playing rules, Bylaw 21 will have no practical application to Bass Fishing. The
KHSAA will designate the appropriate competition rules to be used in the region
and state championships.
Sanctioning/Out of State Travel (Bylaw 23)
As a practical matter, Bylaw 23 related to sanctioning
will not apply to Bass Fishing.
Coaches Requirements (Bylaw 27)
All Coaches must meet KHSAA Bylaw 27 Minimum Coaching Requirements
including coach education requirements, Sports Safety & Concussion,
KHSAA/NFHS Rules Clinic. This includes faculty and non-faculty coaches and any
other individual involved in Bass Fishing-specific training and these
individuals must be listed on the KHSAA Coaching Registry.
Who will assign the judges for Region/State?
Judges/Officials will be assigned by the KHSAA.
Who will train judges?
Judges will be trained by the KHSAA with assistance of
appropriate outside authorities.
When will KHSAA Region Bass Fishing Competitions be
Region competitions will be held during April of each
Who will select and manage the region competitions?
The final assignments for sites will be made
by the KHSAA. These individuals will be listed on the KHSAA web site.
What is the entry fee for region competition?
There is no entry fee to participate in the KHSAA
How will funds be divided from Region Competitions?
If there are any surplus funds from receipts at region
competitions, funds from receipts from region competitions shall be divided
based upon agreement of the schools in the region. Should a written policy not
be in place, they shall be divided evenly following expenses.
What are the competitions divisions for the Bass
Fishing championships?
All competition will be in one division.
How does a school enter the Bass Fishing Tournament?
Each school may enter online in the school subsystem that
your school will enter a team for the bass fishing tournament. School
commitments to enter a team should be submitted by November 1st this year to
allow for planning of the Bass Fishing State Tournament.
Are there other safety requirements specifically for
region and state competition?
All participants and boat drivers must wear a coast
guard approved life jacket the entire time they are on the water. Protective
eye wear is mandated for all participants in the boat, including the driver.
boats must go through a safety check prior to the start
of the tournament.
Can a school enter multiple teams in the region
Yes. At this time, plans are to allow a school tp enter
a maximum of three boats in the region competition to ensure that all schools
have a chance to participate. This limitation will be under constant review by
the Bass Fishing Advisory Committee. One boat entry will consist of at least two
students and no more than four students listed on that boat roster. Only two
students will be allowed to be in a boat at any one time. The boat may go back
to the dock and exchange one student for another anytime during the tournament
fishing hours.
What and who comprise a boat for the competition.
The two competing students and a coach meeting the
qualifications of Bylaw 27 and designated by the member school comprise the
boat for the tournament. In special circumstances approved by the tournament
manager, the boat owner may also be in the boat solely for the purpose of
piloting the craft. The boat owner in this case would have the same
restrictions as the coach with respect to any involvement with the competition.
When is the 2013 KHSAA State
Bass Fishing Competition?
The 2013 KHSAA State Bass Fishing Competition will be
held during the period of April 25 to April 28, 2013 hosted by Murray State
University and held at
the Land Between the Lakes.
Who advances to State Competition?
Qualification standards for the state tournament will
be developed in the coming months and detailed on the KHSAA website.
Withdrawal from the State Competition
Any school that participates in the region competition
and then withdraws from the state competition after having qualified, will be
ineligible to enter the region competition for a period of not less than two


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