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Paul in the News

21.Oct.2011 by Brett Carlson - GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. – They say when in Rome, do as the Romans do. So it makes sense than when fishing on Alabama’s Lake Guntersville, it would be wise to use the Alabama rig. That’s what three of the top five pros are throwing this week at the final Walmart FLW Tour event of the season, including pro leader Paul Elias.

Elias isn’t just leading the season-ending tournament, he’s completely dominating it. Coming into the week, most pros felt roughly 60 pounds would be the winning weight after four days. Elias has nearly reached that benchmark in half the time.

After weighing in his 29-pound, 3-ounce catch, the veteran pro was nearly at a loss.

“I’m having one of those tournaments where you just say, ‘Thank you, Lord,’” Elias said.

Early in practice, the Laurel, Miss., native was struggling to catch anything shallow.

“I said to myself, ‘They’re either dead or they’re deeper.’ So I went deeper.”

Mixed in with his offshore domination is the fascinating revelation that Elias is introducing a new presentation – the Alabama rig, which consists of five baits placed on five separate wires that connect like an umbrella. The baits fan out and mimic a school of baitfish. Although Elias admitted to using the Alabama rig, he wouldn’t say what baits he puts on the back.

“I guess the word is out on what I’m doing,” Elias said. “I’m throwing an Alabama rig. It’s a new-type rig that some guy from near Pickwick came up with. It’s just an amazing deal and I think the main reason it’s so effective is that they haven’t seen it before. It’s kind of like a crankbait sometimes. You can’t always catch them on it unless you’re doing it just right.”

Elias said he fished the same three areas he did on the first day and didn’t receive as many bites. But the ones he caught he described as “a-dults,” which drew raucous laughter from the weigh-in crowd.

Although the wind didn’t blow Friday, Elias said the bite was strong thanks to the presence of current.

“I’ve been very fortunate this week. When I got on that pattern I just stayed on it and found as many places to fish it that I could find. I feel like if I don’t get too crowded out there I can catch them.”

Although continually casting the A-rig is physically exhausting, Elias has no thoughts of slowing down. With a 14-pound lead he can almost taste his first victory on Guntersville, long one of his favorite lakes.

“I’m just going to keep going. I’m going to be chunking and winding for two more days. I’ve thrown that (rig) since about noon Sunday and my 60-year-old butt is worn out.” Complete Story

Mississippi pro sacks 26 pounds on blustery opening day
20.Oct.2011 by Brett Carlson

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. – With a few weights in the 20s, the top of the leaderboard may look normal, but there is nothing normal about the way Lake Guntersville is currently fishing. Long considered one of the best bass lakes in the country, Guntersville proved stingy on day of one of the final Walmart FLW Tour Open of 2011.

With a top-heavy leaderboard, it’s clear G-ville still holds the quality bass. It’s just that most of the pros haven’t figured out how to make them bite. Consider that in 2009 there were 15 stringers in excess of 20 pounds weighed on the tournament’s first day. And last year, 24 stringers over 20 pounds made it to the day-one scale. Today that number was precisely two.

Fall is always tougher as the fish scatter and roam with bait. Sometimes a steady wind can help position the bait, which in turn helps position the bass.

Day-one leader Paul Elias capitalized on that wind to catch a 26-pound stringer. Elias’ boat broke down this morning, and he wasn’t able to start fishing until almost 9 a.m. From there, his day completely turned around.

“I was real worried for a while – on pins and needles,” said the veteran pro from Laurel, Miss. “Once I got out there I was pretty confident I was going to catch them, and then everything started going right and the Lord blessed me and made up for the bad morning, I guess.”

Elias said he experienced a fairly productive practice and that he figured he’d be happy with 13 to 15 pounds per day. His biggest two bass in three days were a 5-pounder and 4-pounder.

“I never repeated any water during practice, so I really didn’t know what I was on. I definitely thought I’d catch some because I had a pattern going, but I never expected to catch that.”

Elias said he caught a lot of keepers, and he continued to cull even if he was only gaining ounces at a time.

“I may have hurt myself in the long run, but I really think today was a big-fish day, so I tried to take advantage of it. In my mind, if the wind dies down tomorrow like it’s supposed to, the fish won’t be there.”

The day-one leader was unwilling to divulge pattern details, but said the wind created current in his best area. In terms of presentation, Elias reported that fishing slower led to most of his bigger bites. Overall, he said he has seven or eight places, and he only sampled three of them today.

“I had no one around me at all today, and that was great. I just love this lake. I’ve never won a tournament here, but I’ve come close a lot of times. Everybody knows how I like to fish, and when I can catch them that way, I can usually catch them pretty good. If I don’t run out of fish, I’ll feel really good.

“I’m on a good, strong pattern, and I don’t think anybody is fishing the way I’m fishing. But a crowd could ruin all of that.” Complete Story

21.Oct.2011 - GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. – Paul Elias of Laurel, Miss., caught a massive five-bass limit weighing 29 pounds, 3 ounces Friday to widen his lead on day two of the Walmart FLW Tour on Lake Guntersville presented by Mercury. His two-day catch of 10 bass weighing 55 pounds, 3 ounces gives him a commanding lead heading into the third day of the tournament. Of all of the pros and co-anglers from across the United States that started the tournament, only the top 20 will fish day three and the top 10 will compete for the title on day four.

“I guess the word’s out on what I’m doing,” Elias said. “I’m throwing an Alabama rig. It’s a new-type rig that some guy from around near Pickwick came up with. It’s just an amazing deal.”

The Alabama rig consists of a hard-bait body that trails four or five wires that have a swivel attached to the end of each wire. Fishermen then tie a variety of baits – swimbaits, grubs or a variety of other artificial baits – to the swivels. The baits fan out and are retrieved and mimic a school of baitfish.

“It’s kind of like a crankbait sometimes,” Elias said. “You can’t always catch them on it unless you’re doing it right.

“I’ve been very fortunate this week,” Elias added. “When I got on that pattern I just stayed on it and found as many places to fish it that I could find. Today I fished the same three places I fished yesterday. I feel like if I don’t get too crowded out there I can catch them.”

Elias said current plays a major factor in his pattern and the presence of current until about 2 p.m. helped him with his catch. He’s fishing his Alabama rig on a 7-foot, 11-inch Pinnacle flipping rod, a Pinnacle reel and 65-pound-test Spiderwire Ultracast FluoroBraid line.

“That rig is very hard to throw,” Elias said. “I can manhandle the fish when they bite it. And man, they just really annihilate it when they get it.

“I’m having one of those tournaments where you just say, ‘Thank you, Lord,’” Elias added. “I’m just going to keep going. I’m going to be chunking and winding for two more days. I’ve thrown that (rig) since about noon Sunday and my 60-year-old butt is worn out.”

Robert Behrle of Hoover, Ala., is in the No. 2 spot with a two-day total of 10 bass weighing 40-12.

Rounding out the top 20 pros that will fish Saturday on Lake Guntersville are:

3rd: Troy Morrow, Eastanollee, Ga., 10 bass, 39-14

4th: Marshall Deakins, Dunlap, Tenn., 10 bass, 35-9

5th: Duracell/Gillette pro Jacob Powroznik, Prince George, Va., 10 bass, 34-0

6th: Alex Davis, Albertville, Ala., 10 bass, 33-9

7th: Christopher Brasher, Spring, Texas, 10 bass, 33-9

8th: National Guard pro Brett Hite, Phoenix, Ariz., 10 bass, 32-14

9th: Chevy pro Bryan Thrift, Shelby, N.C., 10 bass, 32-9

10th: Blake Nick, Adger, Ala., 10 bass, 32-1

11th: National Guard pro Scott Martin, Clewiston, Fla., 10 bass, 32-1

12th: Wesley Helton, Calhoun, Tenn., 10 bass, 31-12

13th: Russell Lane, Prattville, Ala., 10 bass, 30-0

14th: Chevy pro Anthony Gagliardi, Prosperity, S.C., 10 bass, 29-11

15th: Chevy pro Jay Yelas, Corvallis, Ore., 10 bass, 29-9

16th: Trevor Fitzgerald, Belleview, Fla., 10 bass, 29-8

17th: Snickers Peanut Butter Squared pro Chris Baumgardner, Gastonia, N.C., 10 bass, 29-7

18th: Chevy pro Luke Clausen, Spokane, Wash., nine bass, 29-5

19th: Christopher Lane, Guntersville, Ala., 10 bass, 28-15

20th: Kelley Jaye, Dadeville, Ala., 10 bass, 28-12

Pros are competing for a top award of up to $125,000 this week plus valuable points in the hope of qualifying for the 2012 Forrest Wood Cup presented by Walmart, the world championship of bass fishing. The top five anglers in the point standings from the four Walmart FLW Tour Open tournaments will qualify. Complete Story

As noted, Chapman and Elias started in the same area, which had dirtied over the day of rest. Elias didn't do as well as Chapman afterward, though, and came back from Venice with 14-13.

"That was the muddiest water I've ever fished in my life," Elias said of his first stop, which is saying something, given that he's from Mississippi. "It looked terrible. It was terrible. I caught four there – two keepers and two throwbacks. I stayed another 30 minutes after Brent left and caught another on a spinnerbait. Then Bobby Lane was on my other spot. I saw him cull once and he left."

Elias said the water was so dirty that if you were waking a spinnerbait you still couldn't see the bait until it got to the boat.

He lost one fish – a 3 1/2-pounder. He culled once on the day and caught a total of six keepers.

About tomorrow, he said: "I'm not going into the muddy area. I've got one other spot where I may be able to catch a couple, but nowhere that I'd bank on. I really thought that to do well at Venice I'd need 18 pounds. So I feel like I'm 3 pounds out of where I need to be. I'm not that far out of it." Complete Story

Long runs are also on Elias' mind, and besides getting his new boat ready, he's been online checking out conditions.

"You have to consider what the weather is going to do," said Elias, also making his 15th Classic appearance. "Been looking at the river stages, the tides. If you plan to go to Venice, you have to make sure of the tides. Read More

Elias caught a 5-pounder on his last cast that brought his day-3 total to 14-12 and preserved his 16th-place finish. With that fish, and the resultant finish, he qualified for his first Classic since 2004.

"It feels great. I'll tell you, that was the most pressure I've fished under in 31 years of fishing. I put it in the hands of The Lord. I was suffering and I wasn't doing well and I caught a 5-pounder on the very last cast.

"I was still in the area I'd been fishing and it was kind of unbelievable. I hit the brushpile with a crankbait and had a big one get the crank and pull the drag. I pulled the other way and it pulled off. I circled around and threw a jig back in there and she bit the jig, or another one bit it. I set the hook and she bowed me up. She was pulling drag and just came off. I thought, 'Well, there it goes. I blew the Classic right there.

"I only had about 45 minutes left to fish, and I left there and fished around. I came back with 10 minutes left. The wind was blowing and boats were coming by and I had trouble finding the brushpile. With my last cast I came into the brush. The jig was halfway back to the boat – I was hopping it back – and I said, 'This is the last hop.' I hopped it and felt her and set the hook. I reeled about five times, swung her over and had to leave. I culled a fish that gave me 3 pounds.

"I'm fired up about New Orleans." -

Elias caught 15-04 today and moved up 10 spots.

"I think I need to move into the Top 12 or so to make the Classic for sure, so I've just got to hang in there and get them in the boat and not pull another Kentucky Lake. And I feel good, I really do – I'm fishing well, I've got a good pattern going, although the water's getting beat up pretty bad. I needed a couple guys not to make the cut today, though. They're beating on my water pretty bad.

"I'll give it all I got tomorrow and The Lord will be out there with me. If I'm meant to be there (at the Classic), then I'll be there." -

Photo: ESPN Outdoors/Seigo Saito
Elias loves fishing deep structure so much, he started a school that teaches people how to do it ( And that's what he's doing this week – cranking 17 to 20 feet of water.

All the fish in his 26-12 limit were in the 5-pound range.

"It went great," he said of his day. "I was fortunate enough to get in the first flight and I got on one of my main deals. There were a couple other guys who found those fish and ran straight to them. But I got on two of my key places today."

He fished one of those places just briefly – he caught three fish and left before anyone saw him. He noted it "doesn't stick out like a sore thumb on a GPS," so he thinks it'll be safe for the time being. Complete Story

Victory by Elias caps a record-breaking week in Texas
By Steve Wright - April 6, 2008

ZAPATA, Texas — Falcon Lake was full of big surprises this week, but maybe none bigger than Paul Elias jumping from fifth place Sunday to win the Bassmaster Elite Series Lone Star Shootout presented by Longhorn.

And the fact that Elias edged Terry Scroggins by a mere 4 ounces to win the $100,000 title made this event even more of an eye-opener. Scroggins entered the day in the 12th and final spot among Sunday's finalists — 21 pounds, 8 ounces behind Day Three leader Aaron Martens. Read More
Sunday, April 06, 2008 -"On this lake, anything can happen."

That phrase has been repeated so many times this week that it's started to lose its meaning. After all, this is fishing, and about the only certainty in this sport is that there are no certainties.

Everyone talked about the different scenarios that could potentially play out. Martens could do this. Mark Davis could do that. Somebody could catch a 50-pound stringer. But underneath it all, you got the sense that just about everybody had accepted the fact that it would be Martens' name on the trophy when it was all said and done. Read More

Story by Brent Conway Photo mark Jefferys -

Zapata, TX –Sunday it was all sunshine and daydreams. The leader for the week, Aaron Martens, had only a seven-pound, seven-ounce lead over veteran Arkansas pro, and post-spawn guru, Mark Davis. While that’s healthy at any other place, Falcon is just simply not “any other place,” and seven pounds can be gobbled up in one bite with plenty of room to spare.

In fact, it wasn’t outside of the realm of possibility for most anyone in the top 12 Sunday to pressure the leaders – the fishing is just that good. Ultimately it was veteran Mississippi pro Paul Elias who took top honors, after putting 37-11 in the boat on the final day. Read More

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Jake Lands 7.7 Largemouth Fishing with Paul


Paul, Wanted to drop you a line and again thank you for the great time Lance and I had. The time spent with you on the electronics was amazing,but the real deal was when we put that knowledge and applied it out on the water on Friday.We guessed our best 5 would of been in the 42 lb range, with both of us catching our personal best fish of our lifes.We had 2 over 10 and 1 around 9 from your lake. We are getting ready to start into the Everstart series this year and your class will definitely help us out.

Thanks again, Frank

In Depth Fishing Lessons Click Here

Just a quick email to let you know how much I enjoyed my trip to Pachuta. As an avid angler I found In-Depth Fishing to be a master's level course in the sport of bass fishing.  I learned a great deal and it was fun to apply the lessons while catching lunker bass (see photos).  Lake Eddins is an extraordinary fishery! Click Here

David McLarnon
Natick, MA

Fisherman – What a remarkable opportunity to fish and learn from a legend in bass fishing! Fellow bass fishing enthusiasts my name is Robert Chandler who works as an engineer day to day down in southwest Louisiana and I am just your average weekend angler aspiring to locate and put more fish in the livewell more consistently. Recently, I read an article in the Bassmaster magazine that Paul Elias who when I was a teenager had just started his fishing career Click Here