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Ranger boats
FLIPPIN, ARK. (March 12, 2014) Austin Felix and Chris Burgan, collegiate anglers from the University of Minnesota, became the first anglers to qualify for the 2014 Ranger Cup University Team of the Year Challenge when they won the FLW College Fishing National Championship on March 8. The team mined the deeper waters of South Carolina's Lake Keowee to produce 37 pounds, 8 ounces during the three-day event, which gave them a winning margin of over three pounds.

With the win, FLW awarded Felix and Burgan $30,000 in first-place prize money, a fully rigged Ranger Z117 plus automatic berths in the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup. Felix will compete in FLW's championship event as a boater with a chance to win the $500,000 first-place prize while Burgan will fish the event, scheduled for mid-August on South Carolina's Lake Murray, as a co-angler.

As a Ranger Cup University-qualified team, Felix and Burgan added $2,000 contingency money to their winner's purse and qualified to compete for the 2014 Ranger Cup University Team of the Year Challenge. The University of Minnesota teammates will be matched against the Ranger Cup-qualified team with the highest place of finish in the BoatUS Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship in a made-for-TV fish off that will be televised nationally on "Americana Outdoors." Both teams will receive a grand-prize package that includes travel, lodging and meals, as well as the opportunity to compete for cash and prizes from fully rigged Ranger boats.

"It's one of those pipe dreams deals for me where I will get to test my mettle against the very best in the sport," said Felix of qualifying for the 2014 Forrest Wood Cup. "My goal is to go pro one day. It might never become a reality but this is a great first step."

Modeled after Ranger Cup, the most lucrative contingency rewards in the industry, Ranger Cup University is the first program designed exclusively for collegiate anglers and is open to those fishing in either FLW- or BoatUS-affiliated competitions. Signup is free, regardless of which brand of boat the anglers own. To remain qualified in the program, anglers need only adhere to clothing and logo requirements. As part of the Ranger Cup University program, participants will be able to receive specially discounted tournament gear through Gemini Custom Apparel, with no artwork or set-up fees. Through this partnership, Ranger Cup University anglers can purchase fully customized tournament jerseys for as low as $48.

For complete program guidelines and details on Ranger Cup University, including payout, clothing requirements and informational videos, go online to