Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The Alabama Rig has been BANNED

My Facebook feed was overloaded today by people sharing the news that the Alabama Rig has been banned by BASS for Elite and Classic Series tournaments. You can read about it HERE. Personally , I'm not surprised. Being able to catch a limit in a few casts , then spend the day culling would give an Alabama Rig - savvy pro an unfair advantage , not to mention the possibility of injuring fish due to foul hooking.

My experience with it is very limited and I'm not a dedicated bass fisherman , but i will weigh in with some thoughts on the rig. Just for fun and to see if I can goad anyone into leaving a comment.

First off , I was introduced to the Alabama Rig online and in person by my friend Jody White of jodywhitefishing.com . I'm a big fan of Jody's exploits on the water , but I wasn't impressed with the Alabama Rig. It's just a lightweight , castable version of the umbrella rigs that have been around for years. Lots of people have caught lots of fish trolling umbrella rigs , but for me they are bulky , awkward and overpriced. Kind of sounds like the Alabama Rig , right?

In fishing circles , the Alabama Rig went viral quicker than any lure I have ever seen. Good news for the makers who quickly sold out manufacturing and distributing rights to a large company whose name escapes me at the moment. Good for them. I'm still not impressed.

I got the chance to see Jody use one firsthand on a Striper trip this fall. It hits the water with a tremendous splash , no doubt spooking any fish in the immediate vicinity. That's not where this lure (supposedly) shines. It's not a drop-it-in-their-mouth finesse type bait , but more akin to a crankbait or large spinner used for covering a lot of water and locating schools of fish. Jody even noted that it wasn't something he could cast all day , due to fatigue after casting something so big repeatedly. I can understand that. What I can't understand is all of the uproar over a bait with limited uses.

People who are opposed to this rig lament all of the foul hooked fish and unfairness. I'm sure it does foul hook a few fish , but why not just rig it with weedless swimbaits? That would have to help. Crankbaits are probably responsible for just as many foul hooked fish in my opinion. As for being unfair , I don't really see this giving anyone an unfair advantage. They still have to find the fish and more importantly get them to bite a big , bulky mess of wires and lures that hits the water like a canonball.

So yeah , I'll probably never understand all of the hype this rig has generated. I just can't get excited or upset about it  , mainly because I feel like those who really think it will be a great bait will be sorely disappointed by the actual results. Just my opinion.

What do you think of the Alabama Rig? I'd love to hear your experiences , opinions or rants in the comments below!

Have a great week!