Greetings from snow-less Arizona, land of cacti and chicken wings

TEMPE, Ariz. — I’ve seen pictures from Michigan today. All I can say is, I’m sorry. And really grateful to be in Arizona right now, sans shovel or ice-scraper or mittens. Sixty degrees never felt so warm.

Michigan State’s football team practiced again today at Corona Del Sol High School in Tempe, a few miles from where it’ll play TCU Saturday night in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl.

Above is one of a few videos from the beginning and open part of practice.

The bigger news out of the MSU football community today is the passing of former Spartan linebacker Reggie Garnett, who died on Christmas morning. Garnett, a standout linebacker for the Spartans from 1993-96, was a Type 1 diabetic and succumbed to complications from the disease. Colleague Joe Rexrode put together a good piece today on this really sad story.

As for this year’s Spartans, Pat Narduzzi, Max Bullough and Andrew Maxwell were among the Spartans made available for interviews today. All the starters for both teams are expected to be available Thursday. Look for coverage at Greenandwhite.com and in the Lansing State Journal throughout the next few days.

Hope you’re safe and warm.

The Camelback Resort outside Scottsdale, Ariz., offered a well-timed escape from Michigan weather.

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8 Responses to Greetings from snow-less Arizona, land of cacti and chicken wings

  1. avatar Spartan 81 says:

    The really important question is Stephanie coughing up $300 a night for you to stay in the Camelback or is Gannett forcing you to bunk with Joe? And if so is that red ball how you decide who picks up the tab tonight?

    • avatar Graham Couch says:

      A few football drills — maybe involving cones, catching and a shuttle run — does sound like a good way to settle the tab. I’ll take that under advisement. … From a reporter’s perspective, the beauty of these sort of events is there’s often a media block of rooms at a special rate. This is the official Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl media hotel, so many of the press conferences are right here. Makes it easy and, this week at least, this place is affordable for news organizations.

  2. avatar Spartan 81 says:

    Wife and I met Garnett in Shreveport very sad and far too soon.

    • avatar Graham Couch says:

      It seems like just a few years ago he was playing. Time really flies. Very sad story. Leaves behind a 13-year-old son.

  3. avatar NAZSpartan says:

    Graham – Come on up to the snow covered mountains of northern Arizona! Ski at the beautiful Arizona Snowbowl. Check out the pine cone drop in Flagstaff on New Years Eve. Be sure to take the scenic route through the red rocks of Sedona on your way up.

    Are any of the practices open to the public? We’re bringing the kids down on Friday and would love to have the opportunity to see the team up close.

    • avatar Spartan 81 says:

      Practices are locked down for security reasons, plenty of access at the smaller bowls at the pre game pep rallys and lunches though.

    • avatar Graham Couch says:

      The practices are closed unfortunately, unless you know someone and not just media folks. Having a practice open to fans before the game would make a ton of sense. It should be part of the travel package. … As for New Year’s Eve, sounds like fun, but I’ll be in Minneapolis covering MSU hoops.

      • avatar Spartan 81 says:

        I know someone and I will be at that practice you are heading to. Whole key to Minny is to get to the bars from your hotel on the skyway so you dont have to be outside, lots of the bars have tropical drinks so that you can still be in Arizona in your mind.

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