As school bells ring in a new year, VYPE Three Rivers editor Bill Huddleston shared a moment between fall sports activities with Dr. Jason Parker, Executive Director of Athletics for Muskogee Public Schools to discuss the current climate of expectations for Roughers athletics.
VYPE: Where did you graduate high school? College? Where and when did you begin your administrative career?
Parker: I played basketball and graduated from Tulsa Memorial before attending the University of Tulsa where I played college basketball for the Golden Hurricane. I began my administrative career at TU in 2010.
VYPE: Do you have a coaching mentor – someone that you look up to or have called upon for advice?
Parker: My high school coach at Tulsa Memorial, Robert Sprague is my go-to-guy. His experience as a coach and Athletics Director is a welcome source of inspiration.
VYPE: With today’s environment, being forced to deal with unusual circumstances (i.e. Covid), what’s the #1 challenge facing high school athletics, and specifically Muskogee?
Parker: Definitely, there are many different circumstances and opportunities for change, more than ever before including safety, sanitation and schedule disruption due to the current Covid pandemic.
VYPE: What are three words that define Jason Parker?
Parker: In all areas of my day-to-day life, I strive to maintain by core values – Discipline, Organization and Leadership. These define and align with my identity not only as an Athletic Director but also as a husband, father and individual.
VYPE: What’s your message to athletes and coaches at Muskogee under your guidance and leadership?
Parker: I encourage everyone to take advantage of our opportunities to impact our community and youth through sports. #WinEveryday
VYPE: What have you come to love most about Muskogee, your athletes and where the future of Muskogee athletics is headed?
Parker: I love the team atmosphere and support from all stakeholders in Muskogee. We are headed towards becoming a top-tier 6A-II program, competing for championships and developing young people at the highest levels.
VYPE: Let’s have a little fun and check your list of favorites. What’s your favorite place to eat? What’s Dr. Parker’s “Champions Dinner menu?
Parker: Going out to eat in Muskogee, Runt’s Bar-B-Q is at the top of my list. The menu for my “Champions Dinner” would definitely include chicken wings, a baked potato and veggies! Really whatever is on the plate in front of me is my favorite…at that moment.
VYPE: Other than the Roughers, what is your favorite sports team? (College or pro)
Parker: Without a doubt, Tulsa Golden Hurricane! #ReignCane
VYPE: What is your all time favorite movies?
Parker: Training Day and Friday. Denzel Washington is amazing and Chris Tucker was too funny!
VYPE: Favorite music artist? What was the first concert you attended?
Parker: I shuffle a lot of music but Drake is #1 on my music charts. The first concert I attended featured Lecrae in 2015.
VYPE: You’re always on the move but, other than athletic duties with the Roughers, what are your hobbies?
Parker: On my time, I enjoy coaching youth basketball, biking and swimming.
VYPE: Here’s your chance to send a shout out to anyone you wish.
Parker: I’m blessed to have a family that supports me everyday. I want to shout out to my beautiful wife Mia, and our wonderful kiddos Jace, Sydney and Gia