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Rapala Report

Lefebre Says Wake Baits Draw Big Strikes

Rapala Pro Dave Lefebre loves to have a BX Waking Minnow on his line.

“It’s the [bait] that I won Smith Lake in Alabama a couple years ago,” LeFebre says. “It’s the one that I catch a lot of big fish on.”

Lefebre threw a Blue Back Herring pattern Rapala BX Waking Minnow to win the FLW Tour’s 2015 tournament on Smith Lake with a four-day total of 20 bass weighing 65 pounds, 5 ounces. He targeted shallow largemouth in the backs of creeks, where shoreline brush and submerged boulders came together.

BASS Report

Jerry McKinnis, former B.A.S.S. co-owner, founder of JM Associates, and a legend in the fishing industry, passed away early Sunday morning.

He had been in the hospital for six weeks, dealing with an infection that cropped up after a fishing trip in Wyoming. McKinnis was 82 years old.

McKinnis, along with Don Logan and Jim Copeland, purchased B.A.S.S. from ESPN in 2010, and then sold controlling interest in the organization to Anderson Media in the fall of 2017. He was the leader of JM Associates, producing award winning television and Internet shows about fishing and the outdoors. McKinnis was also the beloved host of “The Fishin’ Hole” television series, which ran on ESPN for 44 years.

McKinnis was a member of the Bass Fishing Hall of Fame, the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, and the International Game Fish Association Hall of Fame.

Joe Capilupo of LaGrange, Ill. with record smallmouth bass

The 33-year-old Illinois smallmouth bass record has been broken on Lake Michigan.

The 7-pound, 3-ounce bass was caught Monday night from Monroe Harbor in Chicago by Joe Capilupo of LaGrange, Ill. It was caught on a Z-man Ned Rig in California Craw color.

The fish measured 22¼ inches long and had a girth of 16½ inches.

The former state record smallmouth was caught in March, 1985 from a Fulton County strip pit. It weighed 6 pounds, 7 ounces.

According to a Chicago Sun-Times report, the fish was kept overnight in a special tank at Henry’s Tackle in Chicago and was released safely back into Lake Michigan the next morning.