As the only man to win a championship with the Bears as both a player and a coach, Mike Ditka's icon status is well cemented in Chicago. His penchant for saying horrendous things in the media? Also well cemented. Here are nine of the coach’s hot takes ('hot" meaning racist, outdated, and overall terrible), all of which could be reason enough to strip Ditka of his demigod reputation (or at the very least keep him from saying these things on national television).
On Ray Rice getting cut from the Ravens over aggravated assault charges:
"These two lives are ruined. His earning power is destroyed. That's an important thing. Here’s a young man who had a tremendous amount of earning power, it’s all gone for making a mistake." -- ESPN Monday Night Countdown 9/8/14
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On the movement to change the Washington Redskins team name:
"What’s all the stink over the Redskin name? It’s so much horse sh*t it’s incredible. We’re going to let the liberals of the world run this world. It was said out of reverence, out of pride to the American Indian. Even though it was called a Redskin. What are you going to call them, a Proudskin? This is so stupid it’s appalling, and I hope that owner keeps fighting for it and never changes it, because the Redskins are part of an American football history, and it should never be anything but the Washington Redskins. That’s the way it is." -- RedskinsHistorian.com 8/7/14
On former Dolphins tackle Jonathan Martin's bullying case against Richie Incognito:
"If I was the coach, I wouldn’t have either Incognito, the bully, or the baby, Martin, on my team. That’s me. [Does] that make me right? No. That makes me me. And I would stand up to that, because you don’t do what Martin did and you don’t do what Incognito did. Period." -- ProFootballTalk 11/10/13
On Adrian Peterson getting suspended over his child abuse case:
"The commissioner is out of line, what [Peterson] did was discipline his kid. Did he do it the right way? No. Maybe he thought he did. But I’m not privy to that. But I know one thing, if you are a parent in this world today and you don’t discipline your child when they’re growing up, they’ll probably grow up to be bad people. That’s all I’m going to tell you." -- Chicago Sun-Times 11/18/2014
While chewing gum and refusing to shoot multiple takes of a SNL video:
"Listen, fellas, I don’t piss around like this. I don’t do it when I get paid to do it. I mean one’s enough." -- Saturday Night Live 1/9/93
On his viability as a senate candidate in 2004 to block a future Obama presidency:
"Not that I would have won, but I probably would have and [Barack Obama] wouldn’t be in the White House." -- Chicago Sun-Times 1/13/15
While blaming the media for tarnishing former Penn State coach Joe Paterno's legacy:
"I think it’s very unfair, but that’s the media. He did what he was supposed to do and unfortunately, great people get dragged down when stupid people do bad things." -- Philadelphia Magazine 11/9/11
"One of my favorite things is mayonnaise and I have to tell you that. I love mayonnaise, but I don't eat it any more. If I do I put light mayonnaise on it, which I know is still not good but it's a lot better than the other one and I don't eat it that much." -- Inspirational Stories
On Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford's hat:
"I think he can make all the throws, he’s a smart kid. I wish he’d put the baseball cap on frontwards instead of backwards all the time... I’m not knocking him. I’m just saying that’s the first thing I would tell him if I inherited him. When you're going to go do an interview, put it on like it’s supposed to be on, not backwards, sidewards, whatever way they put them on anymore." -- Detroit Free Press 2/17/14
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Sean Cooley is a Senior Editor at Thrillist and there's no way he's letting you play as the Raiders in Tecmo Super Bowl. Follow him @SeanCooley.