Angler Spotlight: Cody Smith - Chasing Dreams and Building Relationships on the Water
In the vast expanse of the Texas panhandle, where the sky seems to stretch on forever, Cody Smith's journey as an angler began in a small town filled with big dreams. From the early days of watching fishing legends like Jimmy Houston, Bill Dance, and Roland Martin, Cody's passion for angling was ignited, and it's a flame that has burned brightly ever since.
Growing up surrounded by the allure of farm ponds and the serene waters of Lake Makenzie, Texas, Cody honed his skills chasing catfish, often sharing the joy of fishing with his grandpa. It was these early experiences that laid the foundation for a lifelong connection to the water. When he moved to Lake Keystone, Oklahoma, as a high school freshman, Cody continued to immerse himself in the world of angling, spending countless hours on the banks in pursuit of catfish and sand bass.
After a stint in the service, Cody found his way back to Oklahoma in 2011, drawn by the promise of abundant hunting and fishing opportunities. Little did he know that a new chapter in his angling journey was about to unfold. In 2012, a friend introduced him to crappie fishing, and what started as a casual acquaintance quickly evolved into a deep-seated passion.
The turning point came in 2019 when Cody discovered Livescope, a game-changing technology that revolutionized his approach to fishing. The underwater perspective offered by Livescope opened up new possibilities, especially during the crappie spawn, quickly becoming one of Cody's favorite seasons on the water.
In 2021, Cody joined forces with his fishing partner, Dan Mabery, both novices in the realm of crappie tournament fishing. Undeterred by their lack of experience, they embarked on a mission to make a mark in the competitive fishing circuit. Determination and a shared love for the sport drove them to secure an impressive lineup of sponsors for their second season.
Approaching potential sponsors not merely as sources of support but as partners in a long-lasting relationship, Cody and Dan emphasized mutual growth and familial connections. Their efforts bore fruit, as they gained the backing of 10 sponsors who saw not just anglers on the water but ambassadors for their businesses.
For Cody Smith, fishing is not just a hobby; it's a way of life. His journey from the farm ponds of Texas to the competitive world of crappie tournaments is a testament to his unwavering dedication and love for the sport. As he continues to cast lines and reel in memories, one thing is certain – Cody Smith's angling adventure is far from over, and the ripple effects of his passion will be felt on the water for years to come.