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Silliman on Sports newspaper column


Silliman on Sports
By Stan Silliman
Is that a bass in your pants or are you just happy to see me?
How many bachelorettes will use that line when meeting Byron Velvick – the new Bachelor and professional bass fisherman? Hopefully, none, and in this case it very well could be a bass… in his pants, that is. Anyway, leave the lame jokes to us, ladies.  

I can’t imagine any beautiful woman wanting to marry a pro bass fisherman. I know it’s glamorous - Jasper, Texas one week, Table Rock the next and then on to Lake Eufaula. Getting that good-morning, good-bye kiss at 4:30 in the morning, that’s special.  And then helping him decide whether to wear his boat sponsor shirt or the reel sponsor jacket and how well will it go with his lure sponsor cap, well… you can almost hear the theme song from “Green Acres” in the background. We look for Pat Buttram as Mr. Haney to show up trying to sell the ladies doo-dads to reel in her future pro-fisherman husband: “Bach-e-lor lad-ies, my card, ma-dams. Haney’s the name and have I got a deal for you.”

One of the items on the resumes of the ladies vying for the Bachelor was cooking interests. I’m sure when they signed up they all listed varying kitchen skills but how many were including scaling, deboning and filleting? What swayed them to pick Byron? Hmmm? These are good looking ladies and we bet they picked Byron over the New York real estate guy because they’re tired of tiny little sports cars. Women like Wende and Tanya and Krysta have seen enough boyfriends with Corvettes and Jags to last them a lifetime. Now they’re ready for a Silverado or some other tow vehicle… pulling a bass boat. Nothing says commitment like pulling into a truck stop and trying to find a parking place within a half days hike from the front door. That’s commitment and a nice test for her Gucci stilettos.

Those in the fishing world are all giddy about Velvick’s appearance on the show. You can see them wetting their boots right now, saying this event will elevate bass fishing to the “next level.” Just like the movie
“A River Runs Through It” spiked interest in fly fishing. We’re not totally sold on that. We think a lot of people will watch but could get turned off when the ladies start wrinkling their noses after Byron explains the difference between stinkbait and swimbait.

You can see why Byron jumped in it. He’s got a harem, they’ve all taken blood tests, gone through physicals. He says it’s the cleanest dating pool in the country and easily the most expensive dating service. But we’ve got to ask what does a bass fisherman know about dating? He sleeps on a boat for two-three days at a time, doesn’t know from showers, and reeks of fish. He gets about as many dates as a computer geek. Surely, it’s a plus for Byron, but what’s in it for the ladies to hook up with a pro fisherman ranked 197 in the world? Besides glamorous nights in Lake Eufaula, driving around the country in a big rig and playing bridge all day with other bass wives?  We know a bass pro is dependable. When he shows up late, it wasn’t because he went out carousing. More likely his engine died or he’s stuck on a sandbar. And when he’s gazing at another lady, don’t worry. He’s picturing her as big ol’ bass, stuffed and mounted. 
Bass Baffles 

The cute thing about the show – The Bachelor - is that there are always some twists, turns and a few surprises. For this season we think it’ll be a doozy, a surprise to top all surprises. One of the finalists will be revealed to be a mermaid. The tabloids will go crazy, excitement will hit a fever pitch – the Cute Fisherman and his Cuter Fish – and then, the bigger surprise, he doesn’t pick her because he’s partial to fresh water fish. 


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