I wanted to know how Da Coach, Bears 1985 Super Bowl stellar Mike Ditka, feels about the Bears’ new hire, Matt Nagy — who had been the Kansas City Chiefs’ offensive coordinator and had only started calling plays 11 games into this season.
So I called the gruffy Grabowski, aka Ditka, and ostensibly between cigar puffs and a deal of the cards, here is what Ditka huffed to Sneed while he puffed.
“Well, I’d tell him to do it his way!
“Look, I think it’s a great deal for the franchise.
“I’m happy for him, and I’m happy for them. It’s such a privilege to be a coach.”
Is Ditka concerned Nagy, 39, may not be able to run the Bears offense in a way to develop quarterback Mitch Trubisky into a real star?
“I think it’s a great opportunity for the Bears, and I think he’ll make him [Trubisky] blossom.”
“Go Bears,” shouted the coach as cigar smoke fumes shot out of my phone.
The police blotter . . .
Sneed hears rumbles a top contender to replace First Deputy Chicago Police Supt. Kevin Navarro, who is heading to retirement in Arizona, is Chief Anthony Riccio, head of the CPD’s Organized Crime Bureau, which handles gangs and narcotics.
• The snag: It will be Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s choice, and not choosing a Hispanic replacement may cause problems at the voting booth?
• The surprise? The selection of Maria Pena, the highest-ranking Hispanic deputy police superintendent?
Pew news . . .
Cardinal Blase Cupich’s papal portfolio is growing.
• To wit: The cardinal has just been given a new job assignment. Personally handpicked by Pope Francis to head Chicago’s Archdiocese, Cupich was just appointed by the Vatican as the worldwide head of the Congregation for Catholic Education with an emphasis on higher education globally.
• Put that on the Catholic chalkboard.
Ring-a-ding-ding . . .
Getting hitched: Chicago Sun-Times entertainment columnist/colleague Bill Zwecker and his longtime partner, Tom Gorman, a Realtor to the stars, decided to tie the knot after 17-plus years of togetherness. And they did so on Dec. 19 in the private chambers of Illinois Supreme Court Justice Anne Burke.
“We were ready. We knew it was the right time, and it’s great that today, thanks to marriage equality, everyone who wants to can make it official,” said Zwecker. Witnessing the nuptials was the couple’s very close friend and longtime Gold Coast pal, Cynthia Olson.
And check out the portrait of Abe Lincoln in the background.
Sneedlings . . .
An homage to Judy Judy Judy! The Judy Baar Topinka Charitable Foundation will be celebrating the life and legacy of the late, popular Illinois state comptroller at its inaugural fundraiser 6 p.m. Tuesday at Mayne Stage, 1328 W. Morse Ave. (Tickets are available for purchase at https://judybaartopinka.eventbrite.com) . . . . I spy: Guaranteed Rate founder Victor Ciardelli at Kiki’s Bistro recently. . . . Today’s birthdays: Mary J. Blige, 47; Lindsay Arnold, 24; and Yolanda Foster, 54.