When the New York Times decides fishing is worth some precious space on it's pages, it must be a hot topic. As of late, the Alabama Rig has been banned on both the BASS and FLW tour trails because many feel it is unsporting for competitors to use it.
Here is an interesting read on the matter.
The device is composed of five wires angled like spokes of an umbrella, with fishing lures attached to each end. It mimics a school of baitfish, and bass, walleye and northern pike apparently cannot stay away from it.
Its inventor, Andy Poss, dreamed up the device, which he called the Alabama Rig, while watching a tuna chasing a school of sardines on “The Blue Planet,” a BBC documentary series. In July 2011, he built his first prototype by hand in his garage in Muscle Shoals, Ala., and he spent nearly 17 months perfecting it.