Bass Angler Magazine

Simpson University Wins MLF College Fishing Tournament on Lake Havasu

LAKE HAVASU CITY, Ariz. (May 6, 2024) – The Simpson University duo of Landon Ford of Rescue, California, and James Hawkinson of Granite Bay, California, won the MLF Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI event on Lake Havasu Presented by Tackle Warehouse Sunday with a five-bass limit weighing 15 pounds, 2 ounces. The victory earned the Red Hawks’ bass club a qualification into the 2025 MLF College Fishing National Championship.

According to Ford, a combination of presentations and “a lot of junk-fishing” got it done for the Red Hawks.

“Practice was a little rough for us,” said Ford. “On the second day we stumbled on a couple of bed fish. First thing this morning, we ran there and caught one. It was our big fish. It was just over 4 (pounds). And then my partner caught two on a glide bait. Then we just kind of needed to fill a limit, so we went down a bank with a drop-shot and filled our limit and culled a couple times.”

They spent the tournament in the mid-lake section of Havasu. That’s where the best water temperature was, said Hawkinson.

Deps Slide Swimmer

Their key baits included a Deps Slide Swimmer 250 glide bait. Switching from slower moving baits to the glider was key for triggering strikes. The drop-shot was rigged with a 4-inch Keitech Easy Shiner Swimbait. Adding Pro Cure scent to their presentations helped convert short strikes into solid bites.

“We were fishing the drop-shot on random points with gravel bottoms mixed with grass,” Hawkinson added. “The swimbait was the only way we were able to get them to go on the drop-shot.”

The top five College Fishing teams on Lake Havasu finished:

1st: Simpson University – Landon Ford, Rescue, Calif., and James Hawkinson, Granite Bay, Calif., five bass, 15-2
2nd: Simpson University – Aiden Grad, Pasco, Wash., and David Berry, Palm Desert, Calif., five bass, 13-9
3rd: Simpson University – Dylan Grad, Pasco, Wash., and Brennan Osborn, Beaverton, Ore., five bass, 13-7
4th: Fresno State – Seth Moua and Kent Moua, both of Fresno, Calif., five bass, 13-2
5th: University of Idaho – Ethan Leininger, Vina, Calif., four bass, 10-11

The full list of National Championship qualifiers and complete results can be found at

The Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI event on Lake Havasu was hosted by Go Lake Havasu. The next tournament for MLF College Fishing anglers will be the Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI event on the California Delta, June 8 in Oakley, California.

The 2024 MLF Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI season features college teams from across the country competing in nine regular-season tournaments. The top 12 percent of teams from each regular-season tournament advance to the 2025 Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI National Championship.

Proud sponsors of the 2024 MLF Abu Garcia College Fishing Presented by YETI include: 7Brew, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Berkley, BUBBA, E3, Epic Baits, Fishing Clash, General Tire, GSM Outdoors, Lew’s, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, REDCON1, Strike King, Suzuki, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Toyota, WIX Filters and YETI.

For complete details and updated information, visit For regular updates, photos, tournament news and more, follow MLF’s social media outlets at FacebookTwitterInstagram and  YouTube.

About Major League Fishing

Major League Fishing (MLF) is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, producing more than 250 events annually at some of the most prestigious fisheries in the world, while broadcasting to America’s living rooms on CBS, Discovery Channel, Outdoor Channel, CBS Sports Network, World Fishing Network and on demand on MyOutdoorTV (MOTV).

Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, the MLF roster of bass anglers includes the world’s top pros and more than 30,000 competitors in all 50 states and 13 countries. Since its founding in 2011, MLF has advanced the sport of competitive fishing through its premier television broadcasts and livestreams and is dedicated to improving the quality of life for bass through research, education, fisheries enhancement and fish care.

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