FOR-EVERS 1ST TO WEAR TWO CROWNS
We are “a ways down the road” now. The Bassmaster Elite Series is just as popular as ever, maybe even more so. Major League Fishing’s Bass Pro Tour has successfully established itself as an elite tournament series culminating with their annual Redcrest event. The first man to be both a Bassmaster Classic Champion and a Redcrest Cup Champion was Edwin Evers, a Missouri born angler now residing in Oklahoma by way of both Texas and Illinois. The transition to “Okie” began when Edwin attended Southeastern Oklahoma State University where he graduated with a degree in Communications, and a double minor in Marketing and Business Management. Edwin’s competitive nature was evident as a high school and college football player and is on full display to this day, but that competitive spirit is tempered by a large measure of humility that is rooted in his deep faith in God and a desire to never stop learning.
Edwin is basically a self-taught angler. As a kid, he fished from the banks of the Mississippi River north of St. Louis where he caught his first catfish on a Zebco Snoopy rod. He went on to test himself fishing Lake Stockton by El Dorado Springs. By the time he was in high school his
passion for fishing was already consuming him, and it was no coincidence that his college campus was just a short 12 miles from Lake Texoma. It was his experiences on Texhoma that cemented his decision to become a professional angler upon graduating from college. That decision did not really surprise his family, considering Edwin had asked for guide trips as birthday and Christmas presents ever since he caught that first cat.
Competing in tournaments was not new to him. Edwin had been entering them since the seventh grade, when he won his first $500 by catching five bass weighing 10 pounds. In 1996, he qualified for the Bass Pro state team. His early career winnings allowed him to go from renting a house to buying a $7,500 trailer home. That coincided with winning his first boat in a U.S. Anglers Choice tournament. Edwin sold the boat and used the money toward entry fees to continue competing. In 2000, he qualified for the Bassmaster Top 150, finishing 120th. Unfortunately, like many who start down this career path, he soon reached a crossroads- double down or pack up and call it a career.
The year was in 2002 and Edwin’s wallet was very thin. He felt the pressures of the real-world tugging on him far more than the fish were tugging on his line. He had used up all his money and didn’t even have the cash to get home from an event in Georgia. There was nothing left for the 28-year-old angler to do but get down on his knees and pray. He asked for life guidance- make a living fishing or go back home and get a job. The event was on Lake Seminole, and he was in 96th place on the leaderboard asking for Divine guidance. The next day, his prayers were answered when he found a flat and hauled in 22 pounds, raising him to 16th place. That same season he qualified for the first of what has been 15 Bassmaster Classics. Edwin knew It was 100 percent God’s doing. It was at Lake Seminole where he decided to leave his career in God’s hands. With a buoyed spirit that could only come from the power of prayer, Edwin rallied the momentum to become a Bassmaster regular, and ultimately a star on the MLF Bass Pro Tour circuit.
Edwin’s breakout year was in 2003 when he scored his first big win on Lake Eufaula and followed it with a 4th place on Santee Cooper. In 2004 he solidified his status as an up and coming pro with a series of Top 5 finishes. He continued to accumulate Top 10 finishes, and with the success came sponsors- lots of them, like Bass Pro Shops, Nitro Boats, General Tire, Optima Batteries, Mercury Marine, Berkley, and Lowrance- just to name a few. His B.A.S.S. run culminated in 2016 when he won the Bassmaster Classic title on Grand Lake O' The Cherokees in his home state of Oklahoma with a total weight of 60-7 and a cash prize of $300,000.
In 2019, the Bass Pro Tour’s inaugural season, Edwin scored 4 Top 5 finishes including a 1st on Lake Conroe, TX and a win in the inaugural Redcrest Cup event on the Mississippi River. He combined these finishes with 2 other Top 10 finishes to win the inaugural Bass Pro Tour AOY trophy. Over his 23-year pro career, Edwin has won 16 major tournaments ( 11 Bassmaster events and 5 MLF wins), earned 74 Top 10 finishes and accumulated $3.7 Million in career winnings.