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Lure Review

Spro’s Little John MD is one mean little crankbait


Date: 4/25/10
Tackle type: Lure
Manufacturer: Spro
Reviewer: Zander

Total Score: 8.08 - GREAT

John Crews may have flipped most of his fish at the Elite Series Duel at the Delta but he got started by cranking up his first fish with his signature Little John Crankbait. Spro has updated the original series with the new MD which is designed to dive deeper than the original armed with a longer plastic lip.


Spro Little John MD Crankbait Specifications

Type Crankbait
Class Moderate diving crank
Material Plastic
Colors/Patterns 10+
Weight 1/2oz
Size 2.10"
Diving Depth 7'-9'
MSRP $10.99

The Spro Little John MD is slightly larger than the original and features a plastic lip versus the computer board lip found on the original

Impressions: John Crews from Salem, VA took home top prize at the Duel of the Delta in a nail biter of a finish with just .1oz. over Skeet Reese with a total weight of 72.6oz. John Crews is known for his shallow water cranking prowess and has a complete line of crankbaits under the Spro brand called the “Little John” series. The original Little John crankbaits were very shallow runners and dove down only 3-5 feet with their thin computer board lip. They are called the “Little John” because these small crankbaits are 50mm in length and weigh in at only 1/2oz.

We were on hand for John Crew's victory at the Elite Series Duel on the Delta. His very first fish came on a Spro Little John and he flipped his way to victory after that

The new Little John MD (medium diver) is slightly longer at 53mm but weighs in exactly the same at 1/2oz. per bait. These new lures can get down significantly deeper to a max depth of 9 feet. The company has also introduced a larger deep diver aptly named the Little John DD (deep diver) which is 70mm in length, weighs 1oz. and dives up to 20 feet down when paired with lighter lines.

One of the reasons for a plastic lip was to bring the line tie forward for proper action

The LJMD (Little John MD) is a flat crankbait and has an aggressive look and feel from the short rounded back to the lure’s angry eyes. The lure just looks mean, and if you stare at the bait head on it really looks like it is ready to get in the ring and slug it out with a largemouth.

This is one "mean" looking little bait

 There is a wide assortment of colors/patterns available, many of which are designed to imitate local forage. Spro offers these baits in both solid and translucent patterns and a number of them use foils to create mire flash in the water like the Chrome Olive and Old Glory patterns. Each bait comes armed with two Gamakatsu size five treble hooks.

A look at the original, notice the line tie right at the front of the lure above the computer board lip

Real World Tests: To test the Little John MD we head to the same body of water where John Crews claimed victory, the California Delta, where we cranked the river channels and docks. We also took the LJMD to Falcon Lake Texas where we fished submerged creek beds and ran the lure in between the flooded treetops to rouse bites.

The Little John MD is a flat crankbait

Casting: Though small in overall size the Spro LJMD casts quite well, the secret is a small ball in the belly of the lure that looks like it is made out of rubber but is actually infused with tungsten. This tungsten weight transfer system drops into the tail section during casts helping this small bait sail through the air a good distance. The lure is so easy to cast that it is easy to place the bait right up against structure, something I did a lot of at the Delta where I wanted to get the bait right up against the drop offs and at Lake Falcon where I constantly lob cast the bait right into the top of submerged timber.

I used the Little John MD crankbait to work submerged timber at Lake Falcon, Texas

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