Recently, I've received more than a few queries about two subjects. One being BTB's plan for training camp coverage, and the other about the Maple Street Press Cowboys Annual that is now going on its third year of existence. I've delayed discussing these issues on the blog as both are tied-up with the current NFL labor negotiations. No, we're not actually part of the negotiations, but the results of the NFL labor issues were - and are - going to have a direct effect on both of those issues. Since it now looks likely that a NFL deal will get done sometime in the immediate future, I can address the questions around these two issues.
1) Training Camp Coverage - In a normal offseason, I would have already planned BTB's coverage of the Cowboys training camp, meaning who is going, for how long, where they're staying and all travel plans. Obviously, this has been impossible without knowing if there is going to be a training camp, or when and where it would take place. With a deal looking likely, I'm going to tentatively move ahead in planning. I won't be able to finish plans until I know if the Cowboys are going to train in San Antonio (as opposed to moving it to Valley Ranch). If they are going to be in San Antonio, we'll provide some coverage of camp. If they move it to Valley Ranch, it would likely be impossible for us to cover it.
With the hopes that it will be an open camp in SA, I plan to put up the PayPal fundraiser widget again this year to help cover the costs of training camp. This can be quite expensive for us, and you guys have always been so generous in helping us defray the costs. Maybe you can help again this year. Once I get dates that are certain for Cowboys Camp, I can give you more details about our plans. But for now, we'll just assume it's going to happen so sometime soon I'll put the PayPal widget up and start accepting donations. If for some reason we can't cover camp, we'll use the donations for something on BTB that will help expand our coverage of the Cowboys.
2) Maple Street Press Cowboys Annual - For the past two years, I've been editing a Cowboys Annual that is a preview for the upcoming season. This year is to be the 3rd edition of that magazine. It has also been under the cloud of NFL labor uncertainty, if there is no season then there would be no magazine. If the season is delayed, we didn't know exactly when it would come out and when to start selling it. But, we have been optimists, so I can tell you most of the magazine is already in the can and ready to go. We're just waiting on the labor situation to shake out so we'll know when it will go on sale. As soon as I have a pre-order link for the magazine from Maple Street Press, I'll post it on the blog. This year, we'd like for as many of you as possible to purchase the magazine on-line, BTB will receive a small bonus for on-line sales that could help fund things like the training camp trip and more. So buy it on-line once the link is up if at all possible. But if you want to get it at a retail store, please do, we appreciate all sales of the magazine.