New Orleans Saints training camp
Now that NFL teams have state-of-the-art practice facilities, the trend is for teams to hold training camp close to home. That is certainly true of the New Orleans Saints. However, over the years, the Saints have held training camp at a variety of locations.
Take a look back at the New Orleans Saints 10 training camp venues.
10. Cal Western (1967-69)
Located in beautiful San Diego, California, Cal Western must have been one of the better NFL training camp sites in the 1960s. Unfortunately, the mild weather did not translate to victories for early Saints teams.
9. Bowling Green State (1970)
New Orleans began the 1970s at a new training camp site. Bowling Green State University in Ohio housed the Saints for one season. However, the change of venue led to similar results as New Orleans went 2-11-1 that season.
8. University of Southern Mississippi (1971-73)
After leaving Bowling Green, the Saints held training camp closer to New Orleans over the next three seasons. Since he was drafted in 1971, Archie Manning must have been like a rock star in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
7. Dodgertown (1974, 76-84)
The Los Angeles Dodgers held spring training camp in Vero Beach, Florida for decades. Unfortunately, Dodgertown didn't yield the same kind of results for New Orleans. However, the first rate facility did house the Saints for 10 years.
6. Nicholls State (1975, 2000-02)
There are certainly advantages to holding training camp close to home. But there are also disadvantages. The weather in Thibodaux is no better than New Orleans in the summer and the Saints have now left Nicholls State twice.
5. Louisiana Tech (1985)
Tom Benson purchased the New Orleans Saints in 1985 and moved training camp to Ruston. Benson tried to brand his team as a Louisiana franchise. After one season in Ruston, New Orleans moved even closer to home.
4. Southeastern Louisiana University (1986-87)
Under another coach, the Hammond training camp experiment may have worked better. But Jim Mora was like a drill sergeant. Mora's boot camp in the heat and humidity got New Orleans off to 2-4 and 3-3 starts in 1986 and 1987.
3. UW La Crosse (1988-99)
For 12 seasons, the Saints held training camp far north in Wisconsin to escape the blistering heat of New Orleans. The facilities must have been ideal because new head coach Mike Ditka kept the team there throughout his tenure.
2. Saints Training Facility (2003-05, 09-11)
The advantage of New Orleans holding training camp at the Saints facility in Metairie is that it allows the team to practice indoors or outdoors. And of course, local fans love being able to see the team practice as well.
1. Millsaps College (2006-08)
If Archie Manning was a rock star at USM, I'm sure the same could be said of Deuce McAllister at Millsaps. Sean Payton moved the Saints training camp to Jackson for three years but returned to Metairie in 2009.
Patrick Michael lives in New Orleans and has always been a big fan of the New Orleans Saints. Patrick's favorite Saints season was 2009 when New Orleans won Super Bowl 44. Follow Patrick Michael on Twitter at patmichael84.
"New Orleans Saints Training Camp Locations," pro-football-reference.com
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