Eat Hot Flaming Grossman!

It was about this time 21 years ago.

I was working at KSTP-AM. We were getting our Super Bowl predictions – Bears versus the Patriots -together.

Everyone knew the Pats were going to tip the Bears. Even the station’s Chicago boys, Mike Edwards and Don Vogel, just knew Jim McMahon couldn’t cut it in the big game.

Of all the people at the station, I was alone in predicting a Bears blowout. Everyone laughed. The Bears? Pffft.
Of course I, alone, was right.

So it’s 2007. Conventional wisdom spoke again. Everyone knew it was true.

“Grossman will choke in the playoffs”. Fans of lesser teams repeated it like a comforting mantra. “The Saints will pull it out”.

And again – for the second time in my life – I say “Hah!”

Saints? What Saints?

The Chicago Bears know how to make a Super Bowl memorable. They’re making this one historic long before it’s played.Dissed all season long, Rex Grossman and Co. are heading to the big game for the first time since 1985 after rolling over the New Orleans Saints 39-14 Sunday, and Da Coach leading them there makes it all the more special.

“Grossman will choke in the playoffs”.


Lovie Smith became the first black head coach to reach the NFL’s marquee game in its 41-year history and roughly four hours later, his good pal and mentor Tony Dungy of the Indianapolis Colts joined him.

“I’ll feel even better to be the first black coach to hold up the world championship trophy,” Smith said after the Bears won the NFC championship.


While on the one hand it’s kind of a can’t-lose – I’ve met Tony Dungy, and he’s a great guy – I’m all with Da Bears. The team everyone said couldn’t do it.

And America needs the Bears to win. Great things happen when the Bears go downtown. The Bears won their first NFL Championships in the thirties, at the bottom of the Depression – some might say that they started the recovery. The 1940 NFL Championship – where Sid Luckman led the Bears to a 73-0 victory (that everyone said they were going to lose!) to the Washington Redskins corresponded with the realization that Britain would, indeed, stand firm against the Nazis. The Bears last pre-Super-Bowl NFC Championship – 1963 – marked the last year of genuine bipartisan foreign policy in this country. The Bears last Super Bowl happened at the peak of the Cold War, in the dark days of 1986 – and, in its own way, was a harbinger of the end of that struggle and the fall of Communism. The Bears’ victory was a validation of Reagan’s philosophy, one this nation needed in that dismal season; with the turning back of the Patriots, socialism was defeated at the darkest houir of the American way, steeling our courage for the struggle ahead.  In an indirect way, hundreds of millions owe their liberty to the Bears.
This has been a crappy week for America; a Bears victory will be the turning point this country needs.

The world’s hopes and dreams focus on the Bears this week. And I have faith they won’t let us – and the world, and history itself – down.

I’m waiting to see which of the usual commenters will flagrantly miss the tongue-in-cheekness (mostly) of the above.

20 thoughts on “Eat Hot Flaming Grossman!

  1. Tongue in cheek???? Say it ain’t so Mitch!

    So where’s the Super Bowl party! My Brian Urlacher jersey is going to get a little more wear this year! YIPPEEEEEE!!!!!!!


  2. Only the hyperbole is tongue in cheek.

    The Bears are going all the freaking way.

    Whereever two or more Bears fans are gathered in Ditka’s name, there is a party.

  3. The Bears defense and running game was good, which is the whole point. If Chicago has to rely on Grossman to win, they’re cooked. They have definitely won in spite of him.

    Super Bowl prediction: Colts 31 Bears 21

  4. I hate telling you this, Mitch, but Da Bears SB victory in 1986 started an otherwise bad year, a year in which the TEFRA tax increase was passed & signed into law, followed by Democrats retaking the Senate.

    Besides, I can’t cheer for Da Bears because I think the world of Tony Dungy. As I stated here, If Tony Dungy isn’t the classiest sports figure in Minnesota history, then he’s at least within whispering distance of it.

    Go Colts.

    PS-They also have Elk River & Golden Gopher grad Ben Utecht playing a key role on their team.

  5. The ’86 Bears did lose a game, Mitch–to Dan Marino, who shredded the Monsters of the Midway.

    So, which quarterback is the closest to Marino in today’s NFL?

    The one da Bears are facing in the Super Bowl.

    And remember, Manning and the Colts have won two straight games they would have lost in previous years.

  6. Da Bears SB victory in 1986 started an otherwise bad year, a year in which the TEFRA tax increase was passed & signed into law, followed by Democrats retaking the Senate.

    And yet, we survived.

    And I think it was because the Bears victory gave us the hope we needed to weather the storm.

    (The thesis is really pretty bulletproof 😉

  7. If Chicago has to rely on Grossman to win, they’re cooked. They have definitely won in spite of him.

    They’ve gotten all the way to the Super Bowl in spite of their quarterback.

    “In spite of being homely, I’m dating Marisa Tomei. If only I’d been a hunk”.

  8. Point is, Manning will light up the Bears D like a Christmas tree. Therefore, Grossman will have to produce. He has yet to prove he can come up big.

    Colts 31 Bears 21.

  9. Manning will light up the Bears D like a Christmas tree

    Unless he doesn’t.  “All we have to do is beat Da Bears’ defense!”  Whether Grossman delivers or not (and what did happen yesterday, anyway?), the Bears’ D certainly has come through in the clutch, right?

    Bears 42 Colts 13.  But not as close as the score makes it look.

  10. “Everyone knew the Pats were going to tip the Bears”

    I can’t believe someone is silly enough to try and pat a bear. That someone must not like their hand very much. Unless it was a tamed bear like they used for Grizzly Adams.

    And tipping bears? What, are they working food service jobs in a minimum wage shop? Interesting cafe.

  11. gmg425, i think you meant to say, “They also HAD Elk River & Golden Gopher grad Ben Utecht playing a key role on their team.’ I didn’t see any injury reports today, but he most likely tore his ACL yesterday judging from the replays.

    still in shock about how easily we handled the Aints yesterday…all i have to say is this team knows how to win.

    and mitch and tll, wasn’t it a glorious site as the snow fell in the 4th quarter? Reminded me of that Rams game back in 85/86 season…

  12. “Bears 42 Colts 13. But not as close as the score makes it look.”

    Ooooo! Mitch is laying the points.

    I’ll take your Indy +29 action for, say, $50, Mitch. Deal?

  13. It’s a prediction, not a bet.

    I’ll wait until I see a Vega$ line.

    And then I will laugh derisively, because I don’t bet football (or, except in cases of diminished capacity, much of anything else).

    (who had the ’02, ’04 and most of the ’06 elections, as well as the ’86 Super Bowl, pretty much exactly dead-on).

  14. Nah. I got most of the districts pretty close, and was the only one to nail the Sixth to the point. Missed the Senate and Gutknecht. Got the national swing counts pretty close. I was 10 electoral votes off in ’04, and nailed ’02 pretty perfectly.

    As to the ’86 super bowl – I don’t remember the exact line, and don’t really care, because I don’t generally give a rat’s ass about pro sports (unless the Twins, Cubs or Bears are contending). People with whom I worked who paid attention to sports for a living – like, the Sports department – thought the Pats were going to win. Other predictions varied from Pats blowout to squeaker. I was the ONLY person predicting a Bears blowout.

    As to the rest of the world – so what? Let them get their own blog!

  15. Mitch-

    Are any of the sports idiots you worked with back in ’86 still around? ‘Cause I’d love to make a few bets with them.

    The 1986 Bears went 15-1 in the regular season and won both their playoff games in shutouts. I think they were favored by 12 points in the Super Bowl. NO ONE, not even diehard New Englanders, thought the Patriots would win the Super Bowl.

    The problem for the Bears this year is that they are the class of very subpar conference. Any of the six AFC playoff teams could probably beat the Bears.

  16. Are any of the sports idiots you worked with back in ‘86 still around?

    Er, yes, if this guy counts. Mark Boyle was one of the best play by play guys I ever worked with, knew sports pretty well inside and out, occasionally filled in for Al Shaver calling North Stars games (for those who follow hockey), and was one of few people I ever met who could go head to head with my dad on baseball trivia.  Reading his bio, I’d forgotten how sharp the guy really is.

    Not bad for a “sports idiot”.

    And yep, he thought the Bears were overrated, had an easier schedule than their record might indicate, and that the Pats would upset them (if memory serves – and I admit in advance it might not).

    Vogel himself was no “idiot” although, alas, he is not still around; he thought the Bears were going to pull out a squeaker, maybe, at best.

  17. The point being, folks, that I was the only one at KSTP in ’86 to predict a Bears blowout. And I was right. It was notable to the point where Rob Pendelton, our executive producer, made me a McMahon-style headband (with “Hubbard” inked across the front) to commemorate my victory.

    And I still have it, somewhere.

    And that, really, is the whole story.

    Well, that and the Bears clobbering the Colts 42-13.

  18. Pingback: Shot in the Dark » Blog Archive » Fearless Predictions – Take 1

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