BassWestUSA - January/February, 2011, Page 51

» GROWING

The term, “It’s a jungle out there” is something that many inner city kids live and face on a daily basis. For the Califor- nia Delta team of Mark Daniels Jr. and Ja- mond Andrews, it was a way of life. Mark was born and raised in Richmond, Califor- nia; just outside of Oakland. Jamond was born and raised on the other side of the bay in San Francisco. They were two young African Americans growing up in the con- crete jungle of the big city. They didn’t know each other growing up, but both had the same things in common, they were both introduced to the great outdoors, and both shared a passion for shing. When they were younger they both watched their fair share of shing shows with the likes of Jimmy Houston, Bill Dance, and Roland Martin. Even at such a young age, they shared the same goals and aspira- tions of becoming professional anglers. As kids, they learned to sh walking the banks of the San Francisco Bay, shing off piers and in the surf. When Mark was in his early teens his family moved to Fair eld California. It is a much smaller rural town compared to Richmond. For Jamond, his family moved sixty miles east from the big

UP

city to the small delta community of Oakley. This is when they both learned more about bass shing and started what today is a burning love for the sport. They each received what most kids sadly never get the opportunity to experi- ence, and that is a mentor to get them going and teach them the ropes of bass shing. For Mark it was his father who is himself an accomplished and knowledge- able angler. For Jamond, he was lucky enough to move into a community that thrives with bass sherman including his neighbor and tournament mentor, Larry Walton. However, he too gives his father all the credit for teaching Jamond how to sh, and he cherishes many memories growing up shing with his father.

» HOW IT ALL BEGAN

As fate would have it, Mark and his father started shing the same team cir- cuit as Jamond and Larry Walton shed, which was “The Hook Tournaments” put on by a local tackle shop. It was there that they rst met. Being both young and Af- rican American, it helped steer them to- ward each other as friends. At rst it was more of a competitive intention to see

who did better. As the friendship became stronger, it became more about sharing information. After several years of competing against one another Jamond called Mark and said, “Let’s go shing, just for fun.” That was the beginning of what has now become one of the most domi- nant teams to sh the Delta, and the best of friends. It didn’t all start with instant success, well, almost. Mark had decided to enter an FLW event as a non-boater on the Delta after it was announced at a Hook Tournament that FLW needed non-boaters. He decided to fork out the seven hundred dollar entry fee and see how he could do in a bigger venue. When all was said and done Mark nished in second place and took home ten thousand dollars for his ef- fort. Shortly thereafter, the two decided to try shing teams together. It was an amateur team event that they decided to try their luck in rst. They nished that tournament in third place. That sounds like a darn good start right? Except for later that evening they got a call from the tournament director who very apologetically asked them to return their

January/February 2011

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