Rim Country football fans best chance for a free, up-close and personal look at the Arizona Cardinals in preseason training will be at two upcoming practices and scrimmages.
The first opportunity will be 1 to 3:05 p.m. July 29 on the grassy practice field east of Walkup Skydome on the campus of Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.
The practice will be the first of the Cardinals stay in Flagstaff that begins July 27 and wraps up Aug. 23. During the team's stay at NAU, the Cardinals will hold a total of 28 practices.
The second chance for fans, and probably the best opportunity to secure autographs and pictures, will be 11:15 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Aug. 4 at Lumberjack Stadium. The session, known as a Red and White practice, will feature live goal-line hitting and be preceded by an autograph period.
Among the players fans will see in action in Flagstaff is lineman Deuce Lutui, who was in the Rim Country last week making a goodwill visit to Whispering Hope Ranch.
The Ranch, located at the base of the Mogollon Rim, is a year-round sanctuary for thousands of special needs children, their families and caregivers.
While at Whispering Hope, Lutui fielded a myriad of question from the campers. Luiti is no stranger to Arizona having played high school football in Mesa.
Last season, he saw action in 15 games and received eight starts.
Prior to being drafted in 2006 the second round, 41st overall, by the Cardinals, Lutui was an All-American guard at the University of Southern California and was the Trojan's offensive lineman of the year.
Before heading to Flagstaff to catch a Cardinals practice, remember times are subject to change. Fans are encouraged to check the team's official Web site, www.azcardinals.com, for the most up-to-date practice information.