Tennessee Fisherman Landed A Massive 100+ Pound Catfish Just A Few Pounds Shy Of State Record


iStockphoto / abadonian

One of the beautiful things about fishing is that every trip starts with a starry-eyed fisherman facing endless possibilities. Who knows what will bite? How big the fish will be? And on the worst of days it still means you were able to get outside and toss some lines in the water instead of being cooped up.

This Tennessee angler couldn’t find a fishing buddy so he hit up a tributary on Nickajack Lake by himself where he managed to haul in a 103-pound Blue Catfish, just 9 pounds off the Tennessee state record. This is an absolute HOG of a catfish and one that would’ve made for a whopper of a fish story if he didn’t come with the receipts of his catch (pics).

A lengthy Facebook post on the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency explained how it all went down. Angler David Anderson (not a distant cousin of mine) was fishing with a 7-medium action, Shakespeare Fishing rod with a Quantum Fishing HD 40 spinning reel and 12-pound Berkley Fishing monofilament line. He was using a nightcrawler as bait to haul in the catch of a lifetime.

The fish was so dang big it broke his net!

Anderson chatted on his phone, with a friend and watched the line in the water. He had a bite and the line broke. He expressed frustration over not changing out his line after catching the 60 pounder. His friend suggested, “Maybe there’s another river monster waiting on you.”
Anderson’s pole was lodged into the rocks. Around 11:45 p.m., he watched the pole as it was torn from its stronghold. He stated, “It didn’t bump or tug, but literally was jerked out. I grabbed it, leaned back and let the drag out.” Knowing he had something big, he went on Facebook Live. Many friends joked with him to just “pull the fish in”.
After a long hour, the fish was closer to the bank. Anderson went into deeper water with his net, hoping to scoop the fish. He continued, “I saw it roll and I saw the tail fan. I was in disbelief. I put the net under the fish, and it dropped its head and bent the net.”
Anderson knew he had to get to shallow water. He stated, “It was like I was walking a dog and then it would walk me!” Finally, in shallow water, Anderson was able to better manage the net. As he tried again to scoop the fish, the net broke completely. “I was not going to let this fish get away after the fight and I gathered both net and fish and took them to the bank,” said Anderson.

Here are pictures of the fish with the complete Facebook post below if you want to read up on how it all went down:

I’ve got fishing on the mind right now. I’m taking my dad fishing in the Everglades National Park this weekend as a birthday present and we’re hitting the backcountry with Capt. Jimmy from Everglades Fishing Co. to target snook, redfish, and tarpon. I’ve mentioned Everglades Fishing Co. a few times here on BroBible but if you guys are ever in Southwest Florida and want to have one of the coolest fishing experiences of you life you 100% need to go out fishing with them.

For starters, he’s just a great guy which isn’t always the case when you book a random fishing charter. You can end up with some really strange captains sometimes. Capt. Jimmy also has a sick line of Everglades Fishing Co. apparel (the best Deck Boots $ can buy) and several different boats so you can choose your optimal fishing day based on the size of your group and target species. I have absolutely no reason to plug this. I’ve just really enjoyed my experience in the past fishing with them and think you guys would too. It could be a great Father’s Day option.

Anyway, for more on this near-record catch, you can head on over to For The Win which was first to report on this awesome catfish catch in Tennessee.