Frazier no stranger to the big stage

Georgia’s Marc Frazier is set to fish his first Bassmaster Classic here at the 2022 Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk, exactly six years after his older brother and Elite Series veteran Micah Frazier fished his first Classic on Grand Lake in Oklahoma. Although Marc and Micah are brothers separated by a little more than four years, the two had entirely different journeys to make it to bass fishing’s biggest stage. 

Back when Micah started high school, their father made him a deal. If Micah gave high school baseball two full years and could look his father in the face and tell him he genuinely didn’t want to play anymore, then he would help Micah get his first bass boat. As you might have guessed, Micah ended up getting his first bass boat and was off to the races. He started fishing as many tournaments as possible and eventually qualifying for the Bassmaster Elite Series in 2015.

Just a few years later, Marc took an entirely different path by falling in love with the game of baseball. He was eventually drafted by the San Francisco Giants at the end of his senior year of high school in 2011. After turning down that offer, Marc ended up playing collegiate baseball at three powerhouse programs – Chipotla Junior College in Florida, Nichols State University and Auburn University.

Playing high level collegiate baseball didn’t allow Marc to fish many bass tournaments in the heart of “fishing season,” but once his baseball career came to an end, Marc made quick work of the Bassmaster Opens and qualified for the Bassmaster Elite Series after his second season.

While Marc wasn’t spending the same amount of time on the water as his older brother Micah, he was absolutely gaining the mental toughness that it takes to be an elite bass angler.

“When it’s going tough on the water, baseball is a big reason why I’m able to keep it all together mentally,” said Marc when asked how baseball has helped his fishing career. “There is so much failure is baseball – I was always mad when I didn’t get a hit, or when I couldn’t get an out on the mound.

“In bass fishing, I can take the small victories like having a top 20 finish when I didn’t have a good practice.”

That same mental toughness has allowed Marc to take everything that comes with the Bassmaster Classic in stride and not let the moment feel too big. Much like we’ve seen from Micah over the years, Marc is as even-keeled as they come.

“I was always taught to break through the valleys,” he said. “Don’t go up and don’t go down. If you get too high on yourself when you have a good day, you will end up in a really low place when you have those down days.”

The game of baseball taught Marc another valuable lesson that has helped him tremendously in his young bass fishing career – making adjustments is key.

“In fishing, you can be stubborn by trying to force a pattern that worked in the morning work throughout the whole day when the conditions changed,” he said. “The same thing happens in baseball – you go three for four off of a righty that’s throwing 90 to 92 MPH and then try to take that same approach later on in the game against a soft serve lefty, you’re not going to be successful.”

Marc will look to make those adjustments come Day 1 of Academy Sports + Outdoors Bassmaster Classic presented by Huk after a less than stellar first three days of practice.

“It really wasn’t that great to be honest with you,” he said when asked about his practice. “Knowing that the weather will change so much by start of the tournament, I did a lot of looking around the lake, checking the backs of places and trying to figure out where the action is going down. 

“I’m not getting discouraged though because the way the weather is going, it’s setting up to allow me to fish the way I like to.”

The first time Classic competitor will have one more abbreviated day of practice on Wednesday to finalize his game plan before the start of the sport’s biggest event, the Bassmaster Classic.

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