When I’m fishing deeper water in lakes where Smallmouth Bass predominantly feed on baitfish, I have a lot of confidence using a soft-plastic that looks just like a minnow.
This is where the Fishing Compete “Italo’s Minnow” works extremely well fished on a 1/8 or 1/4 oz. jighead and fish along the bottom in the same way you would fish it for walleye. My favorite presentation is to “shake” it when it falls to the bottom before lifting it up gently about 1-2 feet off the bottom. It’s best fished with a fluorocarbon leader in the 8-15lb test. Hungry Bass come up to it and inhale it!