Bass Fishing Team eager to bait hooks



Kayak Fishing Town Lake Feb 2012

The Chico State Bass Fishing Team hasn’t been able to fish any tournament waters because of COVID-19 restrictions from the California State University office.

The Bass Fishing Team is a student run club that was founded in 2009 by brothers, Parker and Spencer Moran. The brothers wanted to get a group of people together and enter tournaments for fun since there was big money to win. The team has won $10,000 prizes for placing first in the past. 

The Chico State Bass Fishing Team currently has 15 members. They meet virtually every month via Zoom to socialize and talk about fishing. The team’s home pond is Lake Oroville, however they’re no strangers to Shasta Lake, Clear Lake and California Delta.

Aaron Gee has been on the team for three years and mentioned it has some of the best anglers he knows.

“Tournaments have ups and downs, but we always pull through,” Gee said. “…some of the best fishermen I know.”

Kaneko was first introduced to fishing by his dad at just 10 months old.

 “Since then I’ve just had an obsession,” Kaneko said.

Kaneko enrolled at Chico State to join the Bass Fishing Team in hopes of becoming a professional. He discovered the team on social media and was impressed by their performance. This is his second year on the team. 

The team competes in Major League Fishing and Fishing League Worldwide events, a professional bass fishing league and television show that airs on the Discovery Channel, Outdoors Channel and the World Fishing Network.   

MLF events take place across the country so tournament expenses can be costly. There’s a number of Major League fishing tournaments lined up for California this year, but the team can’t participate until the CSU Office deems it safe.

Aaron’s Baits, one of the team’s main sponsors, is a bait company that was started by three Temple University Executive MBA students and one semi-pro kayak angler in mid 2020. 

“[Gee] started following us and ordered some baits, he loved that our name was the same as his,” Aaron’s Baits employee Jennifer Hoffman said. “We started talking back and forth and we asked [Gee] to be an ambassador for us.”  

The team got acquainted with Aaron’s Baits when Gee introduced them to Kaneko last summer. 

“[Gee] introduced us to Miles and we offered to sponsor the entire team with our baits,” Hoffman said. “We saw an opportunity with the baits … And it was a great excuse to get outdoors and on the water more!”

The team recruits new members by analyzing the top performing high school anglers in California.

Those interested in fishing for the Chico State Bass Fishing Team, can read out via the  WildCat Sync website or message @ChicoStateBass on Instagram.

Kaneko said the best part about being a part of the team is the community aspect. 

“We help each other out, make new friends and fish together even if it’s not a tournament,” Kaneko said.

Melvin Bui can be reached at [email protected] or @Melvinbuii on Twitter.