Light Texas rigged creature bait

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I really think this is something that every angler on the planet should always have rigged up. I can’t imagine going fishing without this in my arsenal, no matter the circumstance. When fishing as a co-angler, however, it’s important to use this in a strategic manner. If you pay close attention to what your boater is doing, this is a good way to catch the biggest fish of the day.

Years ago when I did the co-angler deal in those regional tournaments, I got sick of seeing jigs get skipped underneath boat docks. I know boat docks hold fish and we’ve already discussed all of that, but some tournament days just felt like that “Groundhog Day” movie, man. Every day just seemed like the same thing sometimes.

But then I started to pick up on something really important. I began watching every cast my boater made. I’d pay attention to each dock post he missed and would make a mental note about it. When it was my turn, I’d pick up a little ol’ Texas rig and hit all of those dock posts he ignored. And it sure paid off. This paid for a lot of my books in college.

I prefer a lightweight Texas rig and a compact creature bait for a pretty simple reason: If there’s a fish underneath that boat dock, that poor joker must feel like he was just under some sort of aerial assault. Jigs flying everywhere, water splashing… the whole nine yards. I figured that if I could present something much subtler and quieter than my boater just did, maybe I could get lucky and fool that fish.

Gear recommendations: I like to use a 7-foot, medium-heavy action casting rod spooled with 17-pound fluorocarbon. On my Texas rig, I prefer a 3/16-ounce tungsten weight with a 4/0 offset EWG hook. I always keep several packs of Strike King Rodents on me for this technique, too. I think their unique coffee scent might help me fool an extra bass or two during the day.