Official Rules & Regulations

By your participation in this tournament, you agree to comply with the following rules and agree to submit to and pass a POLYGRAPH TEST or similar truth test in order to qualify for the receipt of any prize. Test may be given to teams at random at all events. Teams may have a third partner if third partner is under the age of 16. Pole limits for three partner teams will be the same as two partner teams.(Example: Eight poles per team unless state limit is lower in which case lower limit for two persons will apply.) A qualified partner from one team may fish with a qualified partner from another team at the Classic.

  1. If your winnings from the previous calendar year/season exceeded $4,000 per team you must enter the Pro Division. Once you achieve Pro Status you will be required to enter Pro Division in all future events. You may enter only one division, alone or with the partner of your choice. Practice is allowed at local events until midnight the day before the tournament. Spectators are not allowed in boat with team during tournament hours.
  2. Tournament waters shall be defined as areas open to all participants of the event and accessible by normal navigational means only Fishing within 50 feet of a marina gas pump or within 50 feet of a competitor’s boat, which was first anchored, is prohibited. (Trolling motor must be in up position to be considered anchored.) A safe and courteous distance should be maintained when trolling motors are in use. Any violation of off limits water will result in disqualification.
  3. In the case of extreme weather/water conditions, Crappie USA reserves the right to postpone or cancel a tournament with the return of entry fees by mail.
  4. To better our events to coincide with daybreak the following changes are implemented: Start times for events will be announced at seminars prior to the events. You are responsible for having someone at the seminars to convey start times if you do not attend. End time for fishing will remain at 3:00 pm. Teams may start fishing (line in water) anywhere on the lake at the announced starting time and may continue fishing until 3:00 pm at regular qualifying events. Any fishing by a team member before the announced time or after 3:00 pm on the day of the tournament will disqualify the team.
  5. One, two or three person team (one boat per team) must stay within 25 feet of each otherwhile fishing. Teams must remain in boat while fishing. Third partner must be under the age of 16. Pole limit applies to three person team.
  6. Teams may use rod and reel combos, hand held pole and reel combos or hand held poles. Eight- (8) pole limit per team (2 hooks or baits per pole) applies except where state limit is set at a lesser number.
  7. Live and artificial bait may be used except when angler is attempting to qualify for certain bonuses by using artificial baits only.
  8. Crappie must be hooked and landed with a rod or pole by team member(s). Crappie must be hooked through the lip or in the mouth.
  9. Teams must comply with all state fishing and boating regulations, including the use of PFDs and kill switches. Fishing and boating licenses are the responsibility of team members.
  10. Crappie must be weighed at the official Crappie USA weigh-in site. Both team members must be present at the time of weigh-in to be eligible for prizes.
  11. No team will be allowed to join the weigh-in line after 4:00 pm. Angler(s) must be in line with fish by 4:00 pm.
  12. Teams may not have more than seven (7) crappie when entering the official weigh-in line. Any team presenting more than allowed creel (7) will be disqualified. Once you have entered the weigh-in line, your fish will be checked for count. Only live fish will be allowed to be weighed. All dead crappie will be removed from your creel and only those live fish remaining will be entered on the weigh-in voucher. Once your fish have been verified alive and entered on the weigh-in voucher, you will then be allowed to weigh-in those fish, and only those fish, even if one or more die before reaching the scales. You may then continue to the scales for your official weigh-in by the tournament director. The tournament director has sole responsibility for the declaration of dead or live crappie. All healthy fish weighed in will be released to the lake.
  13. All crappie brought to the scales for weigh-in must have been caught during the tournament hours from tournament waters by the team bringing them to the scales.
  14. All crappie presented for weigh-in must meet state length requirements for the state in which they are being weighed and may not have any weight enhancements. Any team bringing an illegal crappie to the weigh-in line will be disqualified.
  15. Big Fish entries are an optional $25.00 per team. Only one Big Fish entry per team. Team must designate entry at time of weigh-in. Big Fish Pot will be paid as follows: 1st Place Big Fish 70% and 2nd Place Big Fish 30% of total pot.
  16. A weigh-in voucher will be issued to each registered team at the seminar or will be held for pick up by the team at weigh-in.
  17. In the case of a tie for a qualifying position a coin flip conducted by the Tournament Director will decide who qualifies for the next stage of competition.
  18. Any team having a member who has failed or refused to take a polygraph test or was on a team that was disqualified or denied a prize because either member of that team failed or refused to take a polygraph or who has ever been denied a prize because he or she misrepresented compliance with a tournament rule will be disqualified.
  19. A contestant who fails to pass a polygraph test or whose condition does not permit the administration of a test because of contestant’s use of alcohol / drugs will be disqualified and the team will not be allowed to participate in any future Crappie USA events.
  20. Any minor who participates must make arrangements to have a parent or guardian present at the weigh-in to sign a release form or have the release on the entry form signed prior to the tournament to allow a polygraph examination if required by the tournament director.
  21. Protests must be made in writing to the tournament director within 30 minutes following the end of the official weigh-in. All protests must site the rule number(s) allegedly broken.
  22. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed during Crappie USA activities.
  23. NO ONE can be hired or compensated in any way to fish with you or for you at Super, Mega Bucks. Regional or Classic events.
  24. Refunds shall only be made in a life threatening emergency or death in the family. Entry fees may be moved and credited to another event with 2 full week notice and payment of $25.00 transfer fee. (NO TRANSFER OR REFUND WITHIN 14 DAYS OF EVENT FOR ANY REASON – NO EXCEPTIONS)
  25. You must be an ACA member in good standing to fish in any Crappie USA tournament. You will need to join or have your ACA card at the seminar. PLEASE have it with you.
  26. Instances of poor sportsmanship may be grounds for disqualification if circumstances require.
  27. The use of mobile communication devices such as CELLULAR PHONES, MARINE RADIOS, WALKIE TALKIES, CBs, etc. to communicate fishing information during tournament hours is strictly prohibited. No hole sitting by competitor or non-competitor boat during the tournament


At the request of Crappie USA, one member of each team that qualified for a prize must submit to and pass a POLYGRAPH TEST and/or any other test deemed necessary to determine compliance with tournament rules. Polygraph tests will be given at random at all events. Only one member of the team selected by the tournament director will be tested. If that member passes the test, the prizes earned by the team will be awarded. If that member fails the test the team will be disqualified and neither member of the team will be awarded a prize. The test will be given only once, and no contestant will be eligible for a second test under any circumstance. The decision of the test examiner as to the contestant’s compliance with tournament rules will be the final decision as to eligibility for any prize. Contestants agree to release VMD Promotions, LLC, Crappie USA Tournament Trail, American Crappie Association and all sponsors of these events from any liability arising from the administration of the test and/or the decision of the test examiner. Participants in Crappie USA events agree to release Crappie USA and its sponsors from any obligation for using names and photo likeliness in promotional materials and/or video productions.

All decisions regarding compliance with these rules and the interpretation of these rules will be made by the tournament director and Crappie USA which reserves the right to make additional reasonable rules for the conduct of its tournaments if circumstances require. Crappie USA tournaments do not discriminate for reasons of race, creed, color, national origin, and we abide by all rules set forth in the American Disabilities Act.