St. Charles Community College is offering a continuing education course with a new hook, literally, for anyone interested in crappie fishing, beginner to avid.
Called Crappie University and taught by a team of expert crappie-fishing instructors, the eight-hour course encompasses four two-hour night classes and costs $89 per person. The enrollment fee covers all course materials, including samples of crappie lures and jigheads. Classes will be held from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. each Wednesday in February (excluding February 15) and Monday, February 20.
The courses will be held in the Daniel J. Conoyer Social Sciences Building auditorium on the SCC campus, located at 4601 Mid Rivers Mall Dr. in Cottleville. Parking will be available in the Yellow and Purple parking lots, accessible through the West Entrance on Cottleville Parkway.
“Crappie fishing is no longer just a cane pole and bobber sport, and the pursuit of this sport fish has never been more popular,” said Gary White, Crappie University’s founder. “Across the country, the crappie is gaining on bass as the No. -1 sport fish.”
“Crappie University is not a seminar, it’s an accelerated course in the strategies and techniques for becoming a better crappie angler. Our instructors are the best-of-the-best on their respective topics,” he said.
With the advent of several crappie fishing tournament trails, new and unique ways to catch the species under a variety of conditions are constantly being found and refined. Each Crappie University instructor has a technique he relies on most when the fishing gets tough. From spider rigging and long lining, to dock shooting, pushing crankbaits and other specialty techniques, the course instructors will share their knowledge on how they find and catch crappie. A question-and-answer session is included each night.
“It has been said that 90 percent of the fish are in 10 percent of the water. While that may not be true in every instance, these instructors know exactly where to find the crappie in every season of the year. They are crappie pros and guides who have developed their techniques through trial and error,” added White.
The SCC Crappie University instructional staff includes Barry Morrow, “the crappie coach,” a retired school superintendent and wrestling coach, Morrow is now a full-time crappie guide in Oklahoma and Missouri. He has been featured on the Sportsman’s Channel and fishes several crappie trails that travel the country. Morrow has won three Crappie Masters events and is the back-to-back winner of the Missouri State Championship. He is known nationwide for helping coach anglers in the art of crappie “catching.”
Another instructor is Lake of the Ozark’s Terry Blankenship, a frequent crappie tournament angler who has won many events over his career. Blankenship is considered one of the best in the country at “dock shooting,” a specialty crappie fishing technique that works underneath docks where other techniques can’t reach. Also an expert with marine electronics, he’s been featured in many publications and television shows on a wide variety of crappie fishing topics.
Additional instructors include year-round crappie anglers Kevin Rogers and Jim Dant.
Rogers, in his 25 years as a crappie tournament pro, has racked up 34 event wins in five states, including a win of the June 2016 Crappie Masters event on Truman Lake. Rogers and his dad, Charlie, were named the 2016 Crappie Masters national Team of the Year, by accumulating the most points for the season.
Dant, who lives near St. Louis, is also familiar with the winner’s circle. He has 17 top-three finishes in crappie tournaments over the past six years. Familiar with many waters in the region, he has great information on best jig colors and techniques.
To enroll in Crappie University, call 636-922-8233 or visit stchas.edu/learnforlife to register online.
For more information about Crappie University, visit CrappieUniversity.com.