According to ArizonaSports.com, http://arizonasports.com/40/1615570/MOVING-ON, a 25 year tradition is coming to an end. The Arizona Cardinals will be moving the training camp from the northern city of Flagstaff to the closer, less expensive site of their stadium in Glendale. Reasons why will be rehashed. Rooms with small beds for pro athletes, weight room not adequate, travel expenses, meeting rooms... etc. A practice bubble, similar to the one Arizona State University uses and the one the Cards practiced in last year would most likely have to be built, whether at the Glendale grounds or the Tempe practice facility, to have enough room for all the players and coaches who will want to split the team up for specific drills and teachings. (Though with the new CBA, practices, especially contract drills, make the need less urgent.) But will the ambiance and player camaraderie that is usually enforced when people are forced to live together, change?
I truly understand the decision- though I think Flagstaff made a huge mistake, if for nothing, not overpaying.
But on a personal note, I've headed up the mountain for years. (I think the first one was around 1996, 1997.. and yes, it was a small, kinda "meet-your-neighbor" visit.) Then, family came involved. It was something my son and adopted nephew that grew into a coming-of age routine. ,After the SB year happened, the crowd exploded and sometimes you felt like a sardine, but the excitement was electric. Now it's gone and I feel a small part of me is also.
I'll still make it down to the UPHO and watch the large men play a game.
But I would still prefer to watch large men play in a game with the Flagstaff scenery in the background.
Rest in peace, Flagstaff. You will be missed.