Happy Mike Ditka Day, fair residents of Illinois.
Governor Pat Quinn’s office declared Monday “Mike Ditka Day” according to a report from the Associated Press, to the delight of Superfans everywhere.
Here is an excerpt from the report, explaining exactly why the Gov. chose today:
The Hall of Famer’s No. 89 is being retired during a halftime ceremony Monday night when the Bears host the Dallas Cowboys.
Dikta is the 14th Bear to have his number retired by the team.
In a statement, Quinn calls Ditka “the best tight end of all time.” And he says “Da Coach” ”molded and guided arguably the best football team,” referring to the 1985 Super Bowl champs.
Ditka was drafted by the Bears in 1961 and played for the team through 1966. He returned to coach from 1982 until 1992. [Associated Press]
Ditka caught 316 passes for 4503 yards with 34 touchdowns during his 6 seasons with the Bears. He spent an additional four years with the Dallas Cowboys and two with the Philadelphia Eagles.
Ditka was a 5-time Pro Bowler and 2-time First-Team All Pro and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1988.
He went 106-62 as head coach of Chicago and won a Super Bowl with the team in 1985.
Now, let us enjoy some classic Ditka soundbites: