Steelers training camp plans to return to Latrobe in 2022
By Tommy Jaggi
The Pittsburgh Steelers were unable to host their annual training camp at Saint Vincent College this year, but the plan is to return to Latrobe in 2022.
Fans were sorely disappointed with the NFL’s decision to deny approval for the Steelers to host their annual training camp at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe. Prior to the shutdowns in 2020, this had been a tradition that spanned all the way back to 1967. However, 2021 will mark the second straight year that the team will not be practicing under the sun in Latrobe.
Because their request to host camp at Saint Vincent College was denied, the Steelers will hold their training camp at Heinz Field and the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex in Pittsburgh. Sadly, instead of being able to plan an extended weekend getaway to watch the Steelers, reports are that there will only be a few select days in which fans are allowed at Heinz Field to watch their team play.
This hardly seems fair – especially when the rest of the league is scheduled to go on with camp as normal. Though we will have to weather the storm yet again in 2021, there is some good news: the plan is to return to Latrobe next summer. Here’s what Saint Vincent College President Father Paul Taylor said in a recent statement, according to Steelers.com’s Bob Labriola:
"“We are disappointed in the NFL’s and NFLPA’s decision regarding training camp, as one of our favorite annual traditions is welcoming the Steelers and their fans to campus. The Steelers are an important part of the Saint Vincent community, and we look forward to welcoming the team and fans back next summer. As they begin the 2021 season, we pray for the health and safety of the entire organization and Steelers fans around the world, as well as an end to this pandemic.”"
Steelers spokesperson, Burt Lauten, shared a similar statement. After expressing his disappointment with the NFL’s decision to deny approval to host training camp at Saint Vincent College, Lauten expressed that the team will return to Latrobe in 2022:
"“We are disappointed we won’t be holding our 2021 Training Camp at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa. We were prepared to safely host Training Camp on campus with fans, but unfortunately our plan was not approved due to the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols. We will now have training camp, which is slated to begin in late July, split between Heinz Field and the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex. Once our practice schedule is finalized, we will announce plans to host fans at Heinz Field for a select number of practices. We appreciate the support of Saint Vincent College and the Latrobe community, and we look forward to returning to campus in 2022.”"
For fans who regularly attend Saint Vincent College for training camp, this has all turned into a gigantic nightmare. 2020 was an extremely difficult year for everybody, but with the country finally moving in the right direction, the last thing we want to do is worry about something like this. Pittsburgh Steelers fans were no doubt hoping to return to “business as usual” this year and see their team take the practice field in Latrobe.
For those who are still determined to see the Steelers this summer, it was encouraging to note that Lauten said there will be “a select number of practices” open to fans at Heinz Field this year. Take that for what it is.
We don’t yet have all the details ironed out for Pittsburgh’s 2021 training camp, but the finalized schedule should be coming in the near future. I was really looking forward to a normal summer, but it looks like we are going to have to wait one more year for that.