University News

St. Louis Rams to Train at Home

April 8, 2005

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MACOMB, IL - - The National Football LeagueÂ’s St. Louis Rams have decided to hold their 2005 summer training camps at their facilities instead of Western Illinois University, according to the Rams organization.

"Macomb was terrific," coach Mike Martz said. "They treated us so well. And if we were going to go away anywhere again for camp, that's certainly where we would go. But I think at this point we're better served staying at home."

Martz will hold camp at the Rams Park facility in Earth City.

The Rams conducted nine consecutive training camps in Macomb since 1996, attracting more than 196,000 visitors to Macomb and the Western Illinois campus. Last summer the Rams brought the Chicago Bears to Macomb for three days of practice sessions and a sell-out scrimmage at WesternÂ’s Hanson Field Stadium (15,000). The event, which helped secure a $25,000 Opportunity Returns grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, brought NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue to Macomb as well as U.S. Senator U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (IL) and area State Senator State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville). In Summer 2000, the Tennessee Titans joined the Rams in Macomb for three-days of workouts and a scrimmage.

“Western Illinois University and the Macomb community will certainly miss having the St. Louis Rams and their great fans here this summer,” said WIU Vice President for Advancement and Public Services Larry Mortier. “All of us - - University and Macomb officials - - have enjoyed a wonderful working relationship with the Rams organization.”

“There has been dramatic positive impact on the local economy as well as significant improvements to our campus facilities because of the Rams organization,” Mortier added. “It has been a privilege to host the St. Louis Rams the past nine years. The University and Macomb would certainly welcome them back at any time.”

Posted By: WIU News (
Office of University Relations