What really happened in Arizona / Does this sound fair???

My name is David Munoz I am Manuel Munoz's (dmun) dad. I just want to share with you what happened in the High School Fishing Western Regionals last weekend. I am attaching an e-mail I sent to the Tournament Director along with a tournament rule regarding information and the reponse I got back today.



From: David Munoz [mailto:dmunoz142@hotmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, November 22, 2011 11:14 PM
To: Kevin Hunt; Brenda Moore; David Simmons; mark@bassfederation.com; president@californiabass.org; tournaments@californiabass.org; lee.anthonyd@gmail.com
Subject: High School Fishing Western Regional Championship




Mr. Hunt,

My son Manuel Munoz along with his partner Chris Fenk qualified for the High School Fishing Western Regional Championship held on Saguaro Lake in Tempe, AZ, Nov. 19. As you can imagine Manuel along with our whole family were very excited about this great opportunity. We have always taught Manuel that hard work and playing by the rules would always bring rewards. We are not sure this was the case at Saguaro Lake this past weekend.

We have recently learned that the team from Oregon seemed to have an unfair advantage in preparing and participating for this tournament. We know that the team from Oregon pre-fished with a guide named Josh Bertrand on Friday Nov. 18 and fished on tournament day Nov. 19 with another guide named Sean Coffey. I have done a little research on both men and I have come to find that not only are they both from the Tempe AZ area, they also fish professionally in tournaments in Arizona.

Although we cannot verify that these guides/ pros were paid, they none the less provided valuable information on fishing Lake Saguaro to the Oregon Team before and during the tournament.

Manuel along with Chris and their coach Anthony Lee drove over 14 hours each way only to be put on a tournament field that was less than level. Are these the lessons we want our kids to learn? I though that Manuel and Chris would be learning about integrity and sportsmanship. Was I wrong?

I am asking that the FLW organization look into these unfair advantages that clearly lead to Oregon's win.

Sincerely,

David Munoz

rule:
3. NO INFORMATION • The purchasing of, or bartering for, information about locating or catching fish on tournament waters, including but not limited to GPS waypoints (other than through commercially available sources) and the hiring of fishing guide services is not permitted by contestants or coaches within 10 days of any tournament. Violation of this rule may result in disqualification.

response from TD:
Sir,

We have investigated more and have found no wrong doing. There was no money exchanged or any other rule violation. If your team had a friend at Tempe and he decided to take them out instead of Anthony it would be the same situation. Thanks for your continued support and have a great Thanksgiving…





Kevin Hunt | Director of College Fishing | FLW Outdoors | khunt@flwoutdoors.com
office 270.252.1593 | cell 270.205.5155 | 30 Gamble Lane, Benton KY 42025
um I know I may be a bit bias here when it comes to "our local kids" winning and giving their all, but how is it fair for a guide to be on their boat and that they provide guide services as well (on that lake)...?
These guys know way points, brush piles, drop offs, ect. no fair at all IMO..
Im trying to be open minded here so can anyone help me understand a little better..
Anyone.....?

Manual and David I proud you two and your ability to be respectful sportsman through this adn that you guys gave your all regardless of the outcome..
Congrads to you both...

Mike



PS.... lets go striper fishing now and catch some real "big" bass (on your boat) mines got a new home.
David, im reading this right it appears to be a clear violation of the rules i have no idea what kind of response that was unless they just turned there back on there own rules ??!?!!?? Thats too bad ,
Hi Mr. Munoz...Sounds wrong to me...I guess Dmun could have showed up with Kevin Vandam. According to my interpetation of the rules...I think they are walking the fine line of cheating in the grey area. Nuff said! (8-|
Guys the pairings for boats are random, just as the FLW College Series pairing are. The winning team got a guide by chance on tourney day. FLW is right if they didn't hire anybody the day before, you can't prosecute under Section 3. It is immoral to have unpaid professional help to locate fish before practice, but its not illegal. All the Oregon kids would have to do is prove they have some form of informal, non-professional relation to said guide who agreed to take them fishing.

On that note, after fishing my first FLW College Event at Clear Lake this year there are certainly some flaws in the settings for FLW. The stated goal is to provide a chance to fish in a major tournament that replicates FLW Everstart events. Yet in the High School Series you can practice up to tourney day, no cutoff or designated practice period. And in FLW College, the chosen locations are typically given off limits. Very little water in a big tourney will be off limits, yet at Clear Lake more than half the lake was cutoff. My point is if they want to truly make the High School and College Series like the Everstarts, the format should be the same.
Still sounds kinda fishy
dockboy wrote:
Guys the pairings for boats are random, just as the FLW College Series pairing are. The winning team got a guide by chance on tourney day. FLW is right if they didn't hire anybody the day before, you can't prosecute under Section 3. It is immoral to have unpaid professional help to locate fish before practice, but its not illegal. All the Oregon kids would have to do is prove they have some form of informal, non-professional relation to said guide who agreed to take them fishing.

On that note, after fishing my first FLW College Event at Clear Lake this year there are certainly some flaws in the settings for FLW. The stated goal is to provide a chance to fish in a major tournament that replicates FLW Everstart events. Yet in the High School Series you can practice up to tourney day, no cutoff or designated practice period. And in FLW College, the chosen locations are typically given off limits. Very little water in a big tourney will be off limits, yet at Clear Lake more than half the lake was cutoff. My point is if they want to truly make the High School and College Series like the Everstarts, the format should be the same.



They are not random for high school. I took them out because I am the coach. I fished the college circuit and made it to nationals. Its different than qualifiers.
The most interesting is the fact they prefished with the guide friday that without payment is just BS thats a violation in my opinion, kinda puts a damper on my feeling for the FLW
David142 wrote:

We know that the team from Oregon pre-fished with a guide named Josh Bertrand on Friday Nov. 18 and fished on tournament day Nov. 19 with another guide named Sean Coffey. I have done a little research on both men and I have come to find that not only are they both from the Tempe AZ area, they also fish professionally in tournaments in Arizona.

Although we cannot verify that these guides/ pros were paid, they none the less provided valuable information on fishing Lake Saguaro to the Oregon Team before and during the tournament.




Paid or not paid... there is a unfair advantage regardless... they still had a guide on the boat the DAY OF the event... how is this not "cheating"?
sounds like they got the short end of the stick. even if they didnt pay the guides you shouldnt be able to be on the water with a proffesional guide for that specific lake.. anyone can catch a big sac when theyre being put on the best spots in the lake. >:-(
First of all , and most important , congrats to all three of you for participating in the event and making it to second place. It sounded like you had your share of difficulties and still had some fun.
From reading Dmun's fathers letter to the FLW , it appears to be a "classic" abuse of the rules . The Oregon team took total advantage of allowing a local and probably very knowlegable guide to show them what to do and how to get on the fish on friday . Having a guide as the "coach" on game day , was mostly irrelevant.
From an old mans perspective( mine) they followed a questionable set of rules and "used" them to their advantage. I call it cheating .
It's no different than what politicians and so called leaders in this country do to take advantage so they can profit from other peoples honesty.
You guys are the champs in my book. CONGRATS
Rob
Agree with you old man!! Congrats to the real winners!
almadenbassmaster wrote:
Agree with you old man!! Congrats to the real winners!


DAMN RIGHT !!
Found this on the Oregon Fishing forum:

ish happens.

no one was payed, not a penny, nothing no form of exchange other than companionship. We contacted the FLW multiple times before the tournament to make sure no rules were broken and in one message it was even said by the vice president of the organization that it was a smart choice

anyone could have asked either one of those fine anglers to show them around the lake for the tournament and it would have been against no rule as long as they were unpaid during the tournament's discretion. We did not look towards Josh or Sean for any form of advantage, Josh was contacted by my grand mother to research the lake, and once we talked to him and became friends we found out he could and would be our boater we chose to not look any further!. I mean why look for a boater when you have one? Boater's in this tournament were permitted to drive the combustion engine, and the trolling motor at their own will and by no means did they help us operate any fishing tackle, casting, or any form of fishing, our boater during the tournament sat and watched all day with encouragement. Funny how no one ever asks these questions before the tournament huh? well whoever you are I can assure you we did our research before this tournament weither it was a weekend warrior or a fishing guide that took us out we would have been happy, If i thought i was going to engage myself into a flame fest i would have gladly fished with almost anyone during this tournament, and I want to make that clear. Have a nice night and a happy thanksgiving.

Sincerely, Colby Pearson 2011 High School Fishing Regional Champion



I would like it if people refrained from posting into this thread other than the OP I would like to hear out where you are coming from?

no rules broken, no pay exchanged, just friends on the water. Someone wanted to take the time out of their schedule to take a couple high school kids fishing and have a good time on the water highly commendable regardless of the persons day job. Oh and when you have questions about what happened during a tournament why not take it up with the people that took place in the event ?

when i fish nationals i will be fishing my hardest and i will be ready for any accusations as always nothing to hide, fishing is what i love to do and my passion in life.

point is any other team could have done the exact same research and preparation we did with very little effort and a little checking with FLW, now let me ask you David you wouldnt happen to be the parent or freind of any of the other competitors would you?
Thanks to everyone who has replied to my post. Your words mean a lot to us.

As Anthony replied earlier, the pairings were not random. In fact I have come to learn one of the boys from Oregon had his Grandmother contact the guides a couple of months ago. The guides were so impressed by what they heard over the phone that they volunteered their services along with the expenses ( gas and use of a fully rigged Z21 Ranger Bass Boat) for two days, talk about lucky.

What really is the difference if you have a "volunteer" guide or a paid guide. They both will put you on top of the fish and tell what to throw. Maybe next time everyone should use a guide.
I thought this was for high school kids?

I really want to thank Anthony Lee for his time, effort and hard work in getting the California team to Arizona and back. I also want to thank the members of San Jose Bass who helped support and gave words of encouragement. Our team can hold their heads up we played fair!!!

PS.....Mike (rippin lips) I'll have to get back to you on the striper trip, If you look at Anthony's post you'll see my boat broke an axle bracket on the way back, so we are without a boat for the moment.