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Archive for Sunday, August 13, 2006

Potter Lake no fish tale

Busboom enjoys snagging bass on campus

August 13, 2006

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To sports fans, Potter Lake at Kansas University is known as the friendly football destination for game-winning goalposts. It became routine last season for the posts to crash into the water amongst throngs of screaming KU students, following victories against Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa State.

Aside from football, Potter Lake offers a scenic view of the university.

Did you know bass fish can be caught at Potter Lake as well? Craig Busboom squashed any notion that fish couldn't be caught at the lake Wednesday when he caught a 1.5-pound bass at 11:45 a.m. fishing with the campanile in the background - not a bad way for Busboom to spend his lunch break.

Busboom, business operations supervisor for the Kansas athletics department, fishes for relaxation at Potter Lake. He began going to the lake in the spring because of its proximity to his job.

"I'm sure there were a few people who snickered as they saw me out there fishing," Busboom said. "It looked good and I saw some bass in the winter time swimming around, so I thought, 'What the heck, I'll give it a try.'"

Craig Busboom, Eudora, fishes at Potter Lake  on the campus of Kansas University. Busboom, business operations supervisor for the university's athletic department, enjoys fishing the lake for bass.

Craig Busboom, Eudora, fishes at Potter Lake on the campus of Kansas University. Busboom, business operations supervisor for the university's athletic department, enjoys fishing the lake for bass.

Currently, Busboom, 40, is giving Kansas a try as well. He just finished his first year living and working in the Sunflower State. Before that, he worked as the director of business for Nebraska University. When asked about where he'd rather fish - Kansas or Nebraska - Busboom said it was no contest.

"Kansas has better water clarity. In Nebraska, we used to joke that good water clarity was if you could see your lure before it got to the rod tip," Busboom said. "The water was really muddy in Nebraska."

Busboom also said the weather conditions were better in Kansas. He said he could barely enjoy a winter fishing season in the brutally cold temperatures of Nebraska.

The Eudora resident has fished for largemouth bass for 35 years. Busboom had a meticulous way of catching fish at Potter Lake. Standing on the grass, he cast over the plants surrounding the lake, then over the lily pads in the lake, and into the water. The cast produced a short sound when the line whipped through the air. It was similar to the sound of a golf ball booming off a tee - minus a few decibels, maybe.

Then, Busboom carefully reeled back toward him, coasting his artificial bait along the surface of the water near the lily pads. He said that during such hot temperatures - the thermometer reached 104 at 12:52 p.m. that day - fish liked the shade of the lily pads. This tactic made one fish jump out of the water and catch his bait. Busboom released the bass into the lake seconds after catching it.

Busboom has a history of being involved with the Big 12 Conference. He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees at Oklahoma University from 1984-1990. He worked at Nebraska for 12 years before coming to Kansas.

Busboom has seen his fair share of athletes in the Big 12. The best he's ever seen?

"Tommie Frazier at Nebraska," Busboom said. "Some of the things I saw him do, especially in that (1995) national championship game against Florida, were amazing."

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