Mac Weakley's Monster Bass.

Mac Weakly caught a 25-pound, 1-ounce bass that would have been a world record.

But Weakley and his crew, longtime buddies Mike “Budda” Winn and Jed Dickerson, knew something was missing from a catch that, if somehow approved by the International Game Fish Association, would shatter the Joe DiMaggio-like “unbreakable” mark of bass fishing, the 22-pound, 4-ounce bass caught by George W. Perry at Montgomery Lake in Georgia in 1932.

“It's a great day, but it's a bad day,” Weakley said at his home in Carlsbad. “It was a valiant effort. We've been trying and trying to catch this fish for years. It's the world-record bass. Unfortunately, it was foul-hooked.”

...

Weakley can be heard on the video saying, “Hurry up, get it back in the water.” And the world's largest bass ever caught was released.

“We figured that was the right thing to do,” Weakley said. “I didn't want to put it on the dock, measure it and then take a chance it would die.”

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