IF THE HAT FITS: Podcasts, projects, and Friday night lights

We have officially made it into August, and this sports editor has been hard at work on several big projects.

As the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activities Association continually reiterates its intent to move forward with high school athletics, I’ve been moving forward with two big ventures. One that is pretty familiar with readers, and another that is entirely new.

That familiar product, of course, is our yearly Gridiron Football Preview magazine. Our team has been tirelessly working behind the scenes, and I can’t wait for you all to see it in late August.

But that new project, as I’m sure you’re aware by now, is our local sports podcast. “If The Hat Pods” is a brainchild that we’ve been working on for months, and I am excited to see it not only come to fruition but to grow.

If you haven’t listened to the podcast yet, I humbly request you check it out. We’re on major podcast platforms such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Spreaker, so it’s super easy to find us. Just search for “If The Hat Pods” and you’ll be taken right to us. And don’t forget to subscribe while you’re at it, because we’ve got some big things in store.

We are now four episodes into the podcast. After our special edition debut episode, I’ve now begun a deep dive into our area football programs. I’ve visited with the head coaches from each of our area teams, and we’ve been covering everything from expectations, personnel, and goals for the 2020 season.

To date, we’ve premiered episodes with Savanna’s Taylor Barr, Canadian’s Wes Jackson, and Quinton’s Kenny Hokit. Fans of those programs can go and listen over and over about their favorite teams to get a little taste of what Friday nights might be like this year in those towns.

For all of you Hartshorne, Wilburton, and McAlester fans, you’ll see your episodes premiere in the coming weeks. The Miners will be featured on Aug. 7, the Diggers on Aug. 14, and the Buffaloes will round out our preview coverage on Aug. 21 — just in time for the first scrimmage of the fall.

A lot of coffee, late nights, and excitement have been poured into these projects, and I hope you’ll enjoy each and every one. Plus, as the weeks go on, I hope my little passion project will continue to grow, change, and hopefully become another great addition to our coverage of local sports.

Contact Derek Hatridge at dhatridge@mcalesternews.com.

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