Joe Santoro: Northern Nevada could get Raiders’ camp | NevadaAppeal.com

Joe Santoro: Northern Nevada could get Raiders’ camp

Joe Santoro

There seems to be a good chance Northern Nevada is going to benefit from the Oakland Raiders' move to Las Vegas for the 2020 NFL season. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported this week Reno is the favorite to land the Raiders' training camp from late July through the middle of August. The Raiders have trained at the Napa Valley Marriott since 1996. What does this mean for Northern Nevada? Well, watching a football practice is about as exciting as standing in the checkout line at the grocery store and the camp lasts only a little more than three weeks, but it would serve to connect the community to the Raiders and make the NFL organization a team for the entire state. The Raiders in town could also mean new facilities (such as an indoor practice facility) for the Nevada Wolf Pack football team. So everyone benefits.

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Northern Nevada was also in the discussion to land the San Francisco 49ers' training camp in the 1990s but the Niners eventually moved from Rocklin, California, to Stockton. The Raiders' move to Northern Nevada, though, seems to be more of a reality. The Raiders have stated that they don't want to train in the Las Vegas area, leaving Northern Nevada as the only feasible alternative in Nevada. Some media reports this week have also mentioned a possible deal cut between the Raiders and Northern Nevada legislators, giving the training camp to Northern Nevada in exchange for the legislators' support of the Las Vegas stadium bill.

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ESPN came out with a list of the 50 best players in college football this week and the Mountain West was nowhere to be found. Not one Mountain West player was named to the list. The Mountain West had three players picked in the first round of the last NFL draft (quarterback Josh Allen, linebacker Leighton Vander Esch and running back Rashaad Penny) and ESPN still couldn't put one Mountain West player among its top 50. Boise State quarterback Brett Rypien (2,857 yards, 16 touchdowns last year) and Wolf Pack quarterback Ty Gangi (2,746 yards, 25 touchdowns) will be among the Top 10 quarterbacks in the nation this year. Put Rypien and Gangi in the SEC and they'd be in ESPN's Top 25 list.

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The NBA is just as guilty with LeBron James. It's all LeBron, all the time. Everything that happens in the NBA is only interesting if it relates to LeBron. The NBA announces its Christmas Day lineup and all anyone talks about is LeBron is going to play the Golden State Warriors. LeBron is producing a documentary, opening up a school, not showing up for an appearance at a pizza place. It seems the only thing LeBron hasn't done lately is win a championship. Like Tiger.

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It seems the NBA and the NCAA are finally coming to their senses and will eventually do away with the silly one-and-done rule that requires high school graduates to play one year of college basketball to become eligible for the NBA draft. The NCAA has also voted to allow basketball players to return to school if they aren't drafted by the NBA (they currently now have to return to school before the draft). We also could be looking at high school players hiring agents before their senior year of high school. None of this, of course, is healthy for college basketball and certainly opens up dozens of potential harmful side effects. But it does simplify things and basically gives into the notion talented (most of which are misinformed and delusional) basketball players only use college basketball as a stepping stone to get to the NBA.