At ICAST, Brandon McMillan was still undecided, but leaning towards fishing the entire 2013 Walmart FLW Tour season. As of this week, it is official; he’s in.
“I really wanted to do it last year, but then we had all that stuff come up with dad,” said McMillan, referring to the tragic murder of his father Jimmy. “Now I am more determined than ever; it’s just time.”
The 29-year-old UPS driver who lives in Clewiston, Fla., won the 2011 FLW Tour event and claimed the heaviest total weight record (106-10) on his home waters of Lake Okeechobee. This season, he finished fifth and will be among the favorites when the Tour commences its 2013 season on the Big O.
“Technically I’m a rookie because I haven’t fished a full Tour season, but I don’t really feel like one,” McMillan explained. “The nerves are kind of in the past. I’m just more excited than anything else; this is something I’ve always wanted to do.”
On the sponsor front, McMillan said Halo Fishing will play a major role in his rookie campaign. In addition, he recently inked a deal with Elite Tungsten out of Shreveport, La. His boat and engine combination will be a Ranger 520C with a 250-horsepower Evinrude. He will travel on Tour with his wife Brianna.
McMillan qualified for the FLW Tour by finishing second in the points race in the EverStart Southeast Division, including a win on Lake Seminole.
McMillan also offered an update on the status of Lake Okeechobee.
“We got 5 inches of rain here on Tuesday. With that and the hurricane rain, I’ve never seen the lake come up so fast. It’s coming up 2 1/2 to 3 inches per day. And the fishing is still unbelievable. Even with all that extra water it still took 27 pounds to win a tournament last weekend. This upcoming Tour event will probably be the best we’ve ever had.”