McMillan Wins FLW Series BP Eastern Division Land O’Lakes Angler Of The Year Award
Category: press release
Nov 4th, 2008 by OutdoorsFIRST
Modified Nov 4th, 2008 at 12:00 AM
BFL veteran to face Dustin Baker at East-West Fish-Off
Completing an implausible rookie campaign, pro Jimmy McMillan bested a field of the best bass anglers in the world in winning the 2008 Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year title in the BP Eastern Division of the Walmart FLW Series. With 733 out of a possible 800 points, McMillan defeated FLW Tour and Bassmaster Classic champion Takahiro Omori by five points.
“This means the world to me,” said McMillan, a Belle Glade, Fla., native. “When the season started, Angler of the Year wasn’t even considered. I just wanted to make the top 30, go to the Fish-Off and advance to the Forrest Wood Cup. As far as ability, compared to these guys, I’m way behind the 8-ball. I’ve never seen these lakes and I had never caught a smallmouth bass until we visited Champlain in September. But for all I don’t have, I make up with determination and heart.”
McMillan started the 2008 FLW Series season off by finishing second and earning $50,000 on Lake Okeechobee in January, his home water. At the next stop, on Wheeler Lake in March, he finished 49th. McMillan then took 12th on Lake Champlain in September and finished the season with an eighth-place finish on Clarks Hill Lake.
“For me, the defining moment of the season happened on day three at Wheeler. I was in 125th place after day two. With just one day left and nothing to lose, I decided to pick up a crankbait and I caught two 5-pounders that anchored a 16-pound limit. Those two big fish pushed me all the way up to 49th place and I got a nice check. Believe it or not, that meant more to me than finishing second at Okeechobee. I had never cashed a check outside of Florida until that day.”
As the Eastern Division Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year, McMillan will lead the division’s top 30 pros into the FLW Series Fish-Off where they will face the top 30 pros from the National Guard Western Division in three days of head-to-head competition to determine who will advance to the 2009 Forrest Wood Cup.
McMillan, the No. 1 BP Eastern Division pro, will face Dustin Baker, the No. 30 National Guard Western Division pro, and Ken Wick, the No. 1 Western Division pro, will face Castrol pro David Dudley, the No. 30 Eastern Division pro. The No. 2 qualifiers will face the No. 29 qualifiers, and so on. The winners of these head-to-head matchups will proceed to the Forrest Wood Cup along with the top 30 co-anglers based on accumulated weight at the Fish-Off. The pro with the heaviest overall weight will also earn $25,000, and the co-angler with the heaviest overall weight will earn $5,000.
“I’m looking forward to Falcon,” added McMillan. “With all the big fish in that lake, it will be a trip of a lifetime. With the Fish-Off format, it’s all or nothing and I’m looking to take full advantage of it. Like I said before, my ultimate goal has always been to make the Cup.”
The Land O’Lakes Angler of the Year title in each division of the FLW Series is determined by the total accumulated points from four regular-season events. Two hundred points are awarded for a win, 199 for second, 198 for third, and so on.
In September, FLW Outdoors announced that the Fish-Off would be held Nov. 20-22 on Falcon Lake in Zapata, Texas. Falcon Lake, arguably the best bass fishing destination in the world, is home to the FLW Outdoors four-day weight record of 20 bass weighing 110 pounds, 2 ounces.
For more information about FLW Outdoors and its tournaments, visit FLWOutdoors.com or call (270) 252-1000. For more information about FLW Fantasy Fishing and Player’s Advantage, visit