KC Chiefs working to keep training camp in St. Joseph

Chiefs president Mark Donovan said he would like to keep training camp at Missouri Western in St. Joseph.
Chiefs president Mark Donovan said he would like to keep training camp at Missouri Western in St. Joseph. The Kansas City Star

It appears the Chiefs are leaning toward returning to Missouri Western in St. Joseph for another year of training camp. The Chiefs’ five-year contract expired at the end of this year, though it does have one-year options for the next five years.

Chiefs president Mark Donovan said the Chiefs could consider other sites in Missouri, including holding camp at the club’s practice facility, but the priority is keeping it in St. Joseph.

“Our focus right now is to work with St. Joe and to work with Missouri Western to make sure we can continue there, and we feel very positive we’ll be able to do that,” Donovan said before Wednesday’s annual kickoff luncheon.

Of the 32 NFL franchises, 18 have their training camps at their facilities, and Donovan said the Chiefs could logistically do it, too, but there are other considerations.

“One of the real benefits of having training camp at Missouri Western is the college structure,” Donovan said. “The dorm life, the cafeteria … everything is convenient. It’s a secluded place that you can get your work done. Coach (Andy Reid) has commented that it’s a real benefit.”

“We talk about the fields, we talk about the football operation, we talk about the fans. If you go to St. Joe and have any sort of Chiefs logo on any shirt, your car … they go out of their way to say thank you for coming to st. jos and we really appreciate that.

Everything looks up

Donovan said the success of the Chiefs’ 2013 season has had an impact on radio and television ratings as well as about a 10,000 jump in ticket sales from 50,000 to more than 60,000 for this year.

“Every single week we get another indicator of how powerful this brand is and how powerful the support is,” Donovan said. “The Kansas City Chiefs radio broadcast is the No. 1 rated NFL broadcast in the league. Our television ratings are up double-digit for preseason. Our season-ticket numbers are up double-digits. That’s powerful.”

To reach Randy Covitz, call 816-234-4796 or send email to Follow him on Twitter @randycovitz.