Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
I have never been a fan of the Arizona Cardinals football team. I concede bias, I am a lifelong fan of the "black and blue division," formerly the NFC Central, now the NFC North.
The "Arizona" Cardinals is a misnomer. The team changed its name from the Phoenix Cardinals (1988-1993) in the 1994 season in an attempt to build a fan base throughout the state on the model of the Minnesota Vikings. From 1988 through 2012, the Cardinals conducted their annual summer training camp at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. To the best of my recollection, the Cardinals have never played even a preseason game in Arizona Stadium in Tucson. (The Greenbay Packers used to play select regular season home games in Milwaukee between 1933 and 1994.)
Let's just drop all this pretense about being Arizona's team, and call this team for what it is: the Glendale Cardinals. Arizona Cardinals, fans feel at home in new camp:
Arizona Cardinals fans flocked to Glendale on Friday as the team
broke with tradition and opened its preseason training camp in its own
For the first time since the franchise moved to Arizona in 1988, the
Cardinals are training for the new season here in the Valley, instead of
setting up camp among the pines and cooler weather of Flagstaff.
That means a much shorter drive for many fans wanting to watch the
players during preseason workouts. And for Friday afternoon’s opening
session, hundreds descended on University of Phoenix Stadium, where the
team plays its home games.
* * *
And for one fan, 70-year-old Glendale resident Joe Sabatino, the new faces make him hopeful for a better season this year.
Although Sabatino is a season-ticket holder, this was his first time at
Cardinals training camp. He never wanted to make the haul through the
mountains to Flagstaff, he said. Now, he’s just a few miles away and
Thanks for making my point, Mr. Sabatino.
If the Cardinals want to be the "Arizona" Cardinals, the team training camp should remain in Flagstaff, and the team should play at least one home preseason game in the newly renovated Arizona Stadium in Tucson (below). Until then, the NFL should exclude Tucson from its broadcast blackout rule that limits our viewing choices in Tucson to the Glendale Cardinals and whatever games are starting at the alternate start time. Bring back the "game of the week."
h/t The Arizona Daily Star