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Simmons Says - Loving podcasting

All the sudden, the emails started coming in. Then it was texts. Eventually, there were a few phone calls. Everybody wanted to talk about the Warren County Sports Authority podcast.

Honestly, I couldn’t believe it. Even though I loved the idea of sitting around and talking sports, I didn’t think there was going to be a huge following. I underestimated the draw that coaches Chris Sullens and Matt Turner can be. For two and a half hours, we rambled on about Warren County sports, joined by great WCSA reporters Trevor Evans and Ansley Mullican and Mud Bums owner Brett Simmons.

By the end, we felt like it would only be fair to give anybody who made it 150 minutes with us a chance to win some free swag. I didn’t think we would get a single email. Man was I wrong.

I had dozens of people who reached out to tell me how much they enjoyed the first podcast with Turner and Sullens. When I saw each of them, they began telling me how people were talking about it to them as well.

It was obvious that we were uncovering a great new way to deliver content to Pioneer Nation.

When I started the Warren County Sports Authority, it was to make sure the community still had the best coverage around. I’ve been doing it for a decade and I knew what this area wanted in coverage. I also knew – now that I free from the confines of management and their bias – I could do it better than ever.

Over the first four months of the website, we’ve published over 400 stories. We also started live coverage at football, soccer and basketball games, began a radio show on WCPI 91.3 FM, helped record an amazing commitment speech and brought Warren County a can't miss podcast.

I can’t really take much credit for it. Other than having the equipment at my house, this podcast grew because of people other than me. It’s not surprising either.

I’ve been taping podcasts with Turner, Sullens and other coaches for years. We just called them meetings and they were never recorded or given out to the community. But the conversations were always entertaining, engaging, funny and honest.

All we’re doing now is pulling the curtain back for people to join us. After over 1,000 downloads in November, I’m going to say people have really enjoyed being a fly on the wall.

Whether it is a long debate about the best athletes in the last 30 years (featured in this week’s Round 2 with Sullens and Turner) or Turner, Sullens, myself and others reliving some of our favorite Warren County sports moments, it always ends up being worth the listen. It also pays off for people who listen for a code word to win a free shirt.

Sometimes the conversations shift into something that doesn’t pertain to Warren County at all. That’s fine too. I’m all for having a way for a two-time, all-state soccer player (Ansley Mullican, if you didn’t know her prolific history) to talk at length about Sarah Fuller kicking for Vanderbilt. There may have not been a person in the area more qualified to put herself in Fuller’s shoes and give an insight.

Count me as a huge fan of Nick Stern’s golf knowledge, which was on display in our first Pencil Whippin’ podcast discussing the Masters. We’re hoping to get Stern and our NFL analyst Reed Tucker Garrison on soon to talk about the Titans as well.

And we’re going to continue to reach out and find new voices to entertain the community. Before long, we are going to have an awesome conversation with college softball players Hailey Wood, Emily Mikkola and Lexie Chadwell about their journeys through Warren County and on to their respective schools. After that, maybe we’ll have Gooby Martin to talk pro baseball and local softball.

Who knows where it ends?

Where it started was with a community loving sports. And we’re thankful for all of you listening!



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