Swaim, adviser for the Auburn University bass sports club, will receive his award at the group’s National Hall of Fame banquet Aug. 14 in Nashville.
Now retired after 27 years of work with Auburn University, Swaim said he was quite surprised when he found out the news.
“I’ll be honest — people who are named to stuff like this are usually well-known individuals or outstanding sports personalities,” Swaim said. “So for me to be named this, it’s something I would have never dreamed of.”
Swaim started the Southern Collegiate Bass Fishing Series in December 2007, and it has grown ever since.
Auburn started the first trail in the U.S. The trail consists of three tournaments and a championship based on team competition which gives each school a win-loss record at the end of the season, Swaim said.
The season lasts approximately four months.
Although it’s in its infancy stage, 17 universities and more than 120 anglers competed in this year’s series championship.
“This thing just kind of got started with a group of guys wanted to start a club,” Swaim said. “It’s been a good ride ever since. We finished third twice in FLW’s National championships and also placed fifth and seventh respectively in the Bassmaster College National Championship.”
Matt Lee, president of Auburn’s bass sports club, said the club as a whole has really been fortunate to have Swaim as an adviser.
“I think that we are really lucky to have Jann,” Lee said. “He takes care of a lot of behind the scenes stuff that most would take for granted. Whenever we travel out of town or anything like that, he is always on top of it and takes care of us.”
Lee said he can’t think of anyone more suitable for this particular award than Swaim.
“Personally, I feel that he is very deserving of this award,” Lee said. “Everybody in the club is really appreciative of what he does for us and bass fishing in general.”
Blake Evans, who serves as treasurer for the club, agreed.
“Jann is real deserving of this award,” Evans said. “What he has done for the advancement of collegiate bass fishing as a whole has been awesome. The Auburn Bass Club is truly blessed to have an adviser that loves bass fishing as much as he does.”
Any student who is enrolled at Auburn University and interested in tournament style bass fishing is eligible for membership.