Bill Schultz lands his 20,000th Small Mouth

Jul 18th 2017

Painstaking records kept over 23 years.

Most anglers would be happy to catch 20,000 TOTAL fish of every species in their entire lifetime, but Bill Schultz isn’t content to be like most anglers. Nope, the New Berlin, Wisconsin angler likes the brown ones, smallmouth bass that is, and has kept record of each one he’s landed over 23 years. He keeps track in his head during each outing and notes the number in a simple log at the end of the day.

What would cause a man to keep track of all these fish? “Over the years I’ve been around many athletes who keep a log of their activities. While swimming at the University of Wisconsin, I kept a log of the yardage in practice sessions, and, during my 45 year racquetball career I’ve kept a log of who I’ve played, scores and a few notes. So, when I got back into fishing I thought a log would be fun to keep” “My log’s very simple and includes date, location, numbers of fish and any notable ones”

Schultz, retired late in 2015 after 21 years as Executive Director of Alumni Relations at the Medical College of Wisconsin He still has work to attend to whether it’s performing seminars at sports shows, writing, or tending to his Pro Staff positions for several companies including: St. Croix Rods, Crestliner Boats, Mercury Marine, Kalin’s, Jackson Kayak, Aqua-Bound/Bending Branches Paddles and Malone Auto Racks.

Schultz is versed in a lot of ways to catch bronzebacks from river streams to Lake Michigan, but in general the bulk of his fish were caught on a few specific baits. “I was fortunate to find the Rebel Teeny Wee-Crawfish in 1994 and have caught and released thousands of river smallies on this great little fish catching magnet. The second stroke of luck was finding the Kalin’s Lunker Grub in 2007 and catching thousands more smallies on it.” “My arsenal grew again last year when I began using the Z-Man Finesse TRD and TRD TubeZ”.

And, while he has thrown the above baits with a variety of rods and reels, it has been dialed into a few perfect combinations. “Virtually all of the smallies I’ve caught have been using St. Croix rods and some very nice spinning reels. Now, I’m primarily using 7’6” ML Legend Elite and Legend Tournament rods for the Kalin’s Lunker grubs. For my river fishing 7’ L and ML rods, with 7” ML and M rods for the Z-Man presentations. I like faster retrieve spinning reels like the Shimano 2500 series, Daiwa 2000 series and Pflueger 30 series”.

“It took me a few years to evolve to primarily chasing smallies, with a few largemouth thrown in. Smallmouth bass are a beautiful fish, one of the best fighters that swim, and, the beauty of the lakes and streams I find them is hard to beat. I will never tire of catching and releasing smallies!”