If you're using whole hops, I'd at least do something to keep the majority of them out of there. Even something as easy as a stainless steel scrubby over your pickup tube should be enough to keep the majority of it out. I generally use pellet hops, and other than the whirlpooling I'm doing with the pump anyways, I haven't had any troubles with clogging of any sort. My pickup tube is angled towards the side of my BK so that should cut down on pickup somewhat, but I haven't bothered with a filter of any sort. Of course in the next batch or two I'll be doing a big IIPA, so we'll see if I still believe that in a month or so.