Instructors are selected from a national pool of crappie experts and assigned to locations where familiar with the waters. Among them are professional anglers, guides and fishing television/radio show personalities. Generally, the instruction lineup changes every year per location.
Neal Alvis was born and raised in East Tennessee near the foothills of the Great Smokey Mountains and the headwaters of the Tennessee river system. He's a life-long fishing enthusiast with a passion for competitive Crappie fishing. He has several top finishes to his credit and contributes his success to focusing on the details of the waters he's fishing. He employs several techniques from shooting docks to spider rigging, and everything in between. He always takes time to listen to others and loves sharing crappie-catching information with others.
Brad lives in Bowling Green, KY, and is a game warden with the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. He’s also co-host of local outdoor radio show, "Southern Kentucky Outdoors,” that airs on ESPN 102.7. He’s passionate about crappie fishing and is active in the SNA Krappie Masters club. Brad pulls from his vast knowledge of time spent outdoors while both on and off his job to constantly add to his crappie-fishing knowledge. He especially enjoys the science behind following batfish during their seasonal movements to be able to find and catch crappie year round.
Scott Bunch of Morristown, TN, has enjoyed numerous years of competitive crappie fishing at the local and national level. He competed in the Crappie USA Trail with multiple wins and top 5 finishes among various lakes in the southeast. He's a versatile angler that relies on a wide arsenal of techniques to adapt to the different seasons and varying lake conditions encountered on his travels in and out of state. He loves to "Talk Crappie" and enjoys sharing his knowledge and expertise with others interested in the species.
Eureka, MO, angler Jim Dant may live near St. Louis, but his passion for crappie fishing has given him several “home” lakes in Missouri, Illinois and Tennessee. He frequents Truman, Mark Twain, Lake of the Ozarks, Lake of Egypt, Carlyle Lake and Reelfoot. Dant has multiple wins to his credit along the national crappie tournament trails, but perhaps his greater accomplishment is taking youth on their first crappie fishing outings, something he does on a regular basis. “Kids need to get outside and to me that means fishing for crappie,” he says with a genuine grin. He fishes year round for the species, but especially likes the winter timeframe.
Terry Davis lives in Bloomington, IL, and guides for crappies primarily on Clinton Lake. His knowledge of the species is vast and that’s earned him tournament success in local and national competitions in and around Illinois. In 2016, he won the Crappie USA tournament on Lake Shelbyville and placed 3rd in their event on Lake of Egypt. Davis says he enjoys the crappie fishing year round, but that some of his best and most fun guide trips have been during December-February when others are at home waiting for warmer weather.
Slade lives in Alba, Texas, where he operates his Lake Fork Electronics Training business of teaching anglers how to use their sonar units on the water. He’s also a guide on Lake Fork, and is a former crappie guide who still loves to fish for the species. Needless to say, he has tons of experience with sonar and is considered one of the country’s best authorities on electronics. Slade is a great educator on the topic and teaches the what’s and how’s that every angler needs to know about getting the most from their units and understanding what their seeing.
Kyle lives in Broken Arrow and professionally bass fishes the FLW Tour. However, he grew up in the area crappie fishing and the activity remains one of his true favorite things to do. He loves to constantly roam from one lake to another looking for the species, always trying out new techniques and tactics to locate and catch the species. In addition to being skilled with a crappie rod and jig, Kyle is also a genuine expert with electronics and heavily relies on his being able to use and understand his sonar to improve his catching. He’s quick to share his crappie travels and experiences with numerous videos on YouTube.
Jeff Faulkenberry is a fulltime guide through his business Endless Season Guide Service on Truman Lake in Missouri. He specializes in crappie, catfish, and white bass. Jeff is also a crappie tournament angler and a co-host of the popular weekly outdoor radio show in the region called “The Missouri Outback,” which airs on KDKD 95.3 in Clinton, MO. He’s also a regular speaker at boat and outdoor shows across the country.
Capt. Clyde is a Des Allemands native who learned a lot about fishing for sac-a-lait in the Bayou Black area. Like many crappie anglers, his early years were spent fishing a jig or minnow under a cork, but he stopped using shiners more than 15 years ago and has advanced his fish-catching skills to an all-new level. He understands that fishing for the species in southern Louisiana is much different than in other parts of the state and country, and he enjoys sharing what he’s learned. He’s now also in the lure manufacturing business, which includes making scented crappie trailers.
John Godwin is a Louisiana native, born in Baton Rouge. Aside from his duck hunting notoriety, Godwin is an avid crappie angler. He partnered with Jay Stone for a Crappie Masters win in 2015 on Lake Caney, where they long-lined trolled their way to victory. He also enjoys fishing for the species a variety of different ways. With his vast experience as a lifetime outdoorsman in the Sportsman’s Paradise state, the affable angler has a treasury of fishing knowledge learned in Louisiana’s waters large and small, and an abundance of funny remembrances to share.
Living and guiding full time for years on Oklahoma’s famed crappie lake, Lake Eufaula, Todd Huckabee is one of the country’s most noted authorities on the species. His knowledge comes from spending countless days on the water throughout all seasons of the year. He’s fished many of the finest crappie waters in the country, and now also guides on Oklahoma’s Ft. Gibson Lake and Arkansas’ Lake Millwood. He’s an expert at finding and catching crappies regardless of the conditions. He’s featured frequently in national magazines and on national TV shows.
Josh guides on Oklahoma home lake Keystone, but is also highly experienced on Oologah, Eufaula, Okmulgee, Dripping springs and Skiatook. His knack is for figuring out exactly what to do to catch crappie regardless of their moods. Sometimes he finds downsizing to tiny hair jigs is the secret, other times he's going big bait for big fish. But he says that always the real key to crappie fishing success is finding the baitfish first. "Find the baitfish and you''ll find the crappie. Then it's just a matter of dialing in to find what they want to eat on the end of your line." Josh relies on the latest in Garmin electronics to help him find baitfish and the best fish-holding spots.
Art is outdoors editor for KyForward. The native Kentuckian graduated from Western Kentucky University and is a lifelong outdoorsman. He has worked as a newspaper columnist, magazine journalist and author, and is a former staff writer for Kentucky Afield Magazine, editor of the annual Kentucky Hunting & Trapping Guide and Kentucky Spring Hunting Guide, and co-writer of the Kentucky Afield Outdoors newspaper column. He also authored the book, A Fishing Guide to Kentucky’s Major Lakes.
Chad lives and works in Marshall, MO, but his passion for crappie fishing keeps him on the move at every opportunity he gets. He and crappie tournament fishing partner Barrow Morrow have been a prominent force over the past 5 years. Together they’ve won 3 of the Crappie Masters Missouri State Championships, and finished second in the other two. They also won the Mississippi State Championship in 2017. Chad and Berry are the 2018 Crappie Masters Angler Team of the Year.
The Deepwater, MO, angler loves his home waters of Truman Lake but has fished for the species all across the country. Morrow is a retired school superintendent and wresting coach that has transformed his educational spirit to become the “The Crappie Coach” who shares his passion for slabs on and off the water everywhere he goes. He has been featured on television’s Sportsman’s Channel, guides for crappie and competes along the professional crappie trails. He has won three Crappie Masters events and is a two-time winner of the Missouri State Championship.
Dustin is a crappie guide with Feel the Thump Guide Service and a musician with popular country band Brushville. In both occupations, he’s highly skilled at keeping the strings of his respective tools – crappie rod and guitar – singing with action. He takes particular pride in sharing his knowledge of today’s electronics to help anglers maximize their time on the water, saying a lot of their guide trips are booked to go with customers in the customers’ boats for firsthand lessons on their own sonar.
Terry is from Eros, La., who grew up fishing in and around the area. He’s honed his crappie-catching skills on D’Arbonne, but has further expanded his knowledge of the species and fishing versatility in recent years while fishing the professional crappie trails. He now does it all – long-line trolls, spider rigs, jigs and more – so pretty much whatever it takes to find and catch crappie. He credits being able to use and trust his electronics as a big part of his success; he and his tournament partner are former Crappie Masters Louisiana State Champions.
Gary lives on Ft. Gibson Lake, Okla., and for that reason spends the majority of his crappie fishing on that body of water. But don’t be surprised if you find him on the Navigation Channel, Hudson, Tenkiller or Grand because he does like to move around and sample the crappie fishing elsewhere too. He spends most of his time fishing with one rod and jig, but he’s also become proficient at dock shooting in recent years. Downsizing to tiny jigs and fishing deep is another of his specialties for success. He’s also highly experienced with electronics and stays up to date with the technology, having a lot to share.
Kevin Rogers lives in Pleasant Hill, MO, and loves Truman Lake but don’t be surprised if you see him in your state on any given weekend because he’s constantly visiting favorite haunts in Texas and Oklahoma, and checking out new waters elsewhere. He and Dad “Charlie” team often in tournaments and new-crappie-hole explorations, and as a result the two are among the best-known crappie fishermen in the country. They have more than 30 professional wins across five states. They have mastered the “Run and Gun” technique for crappie, but also have great versatility.
Blaine inherited his fishing passion and skills from his late father, JB Salter, inventor of the Salter’s Jiggin’ Pole almost 40 years ago. Blaine lives by the words his dad once wrote: "We are all born not knowing anything. As life begins we start to acquire knowledge and experience things which will shape our life and learn about the world and things within it." Blaine has been listening, watching and incorporating the techniques and styles from the very best over the years to incorporate them into the methods he now teaches to anyone wanting to become a better crappie angler.
Kyle Schoenherr lives is Oakdale, IL, and is a full-time professional crappie angler and guide. He is widely considered one of the top tournament pros in the country by his fellow competitors and from media sources such as Crappie NOW and CrappieCrazy.com. His All Seasons Crappie Fishing Guide Service frequents Illinois’ Rend Lake, Kinkaid and Lake of Egypt, allowing clients to choose among jigging, fishing with a slip bobber or spider rigging in order to fit preferences or learning a desired technique. Among his many tournament trophies are the 2015 Crappie National Championship on Kentucky Lake, TN, and 2015 Crappie USA National Championship on Patoka Lake, IN.
Ed lives in Many, La., and owns and operates Sac-A-Lait Slab Hunter guide service on Toledo Bend. He’s guided from a pontoon boat for years and has mastered the ways of rigging it for crappie fishing, including the set up of his electronics. Ed has a wealth of information to share regarding his equipment and tactics for locating and catching crappie, with a big part of the knowledge coming from the art of boat positioning over cover. Toledo Bend is considered one of the top crappie lakes in the country.
Kris and dad Terry are from Mt. Sterling, KY, and have been fishing pals ever since Kris was old enough to walk. Kris fished Beaver Creek and nearby ponds in his youth, but expanded his fishing waters in his teens when his dad bought a boat. Cave Run is their home lake but they fish Green River and Cumberland dozens of times throughout the year. They are the Crappie USA 2017 and 2018 Angler Team of the Year. Kris is Deputy Commissioner at the Kentucky Dept. of Juvenile Justice; Terry is retired.
George Toalson of Claremore, OK, is a retired school teacher who continues his educational ways by combining them with with his fishing prowess to help anglers of all ages catch more fish. Toalson grew up fishing with his dad and the passion for the sport led to his second career as production manager and lure designer at Gene Larew/Bobby Garland lure company in Tulsa. Toalson has fishing knowledge learned above the water as an angler and below the surface from years of scuba diving, both contributing to his development of new lures and colors. George likes to cast soft plastics for crappies, and has great success doing that on his favorite Oklahoma waters of Grand Lake, Hudson and Ft. Gibson.
Scott is the Field promotions manager for G3 Boats and the longtime host of G3 Sportsman. The avid outdoorsman has hunted and fished his way across the country with some of the very best outdoors folks while filming for his show, but to this day he still makes some personal time to pursue one of his very favorite species to catch – the crappie.