Sources: '85 Bears to White House

Updated: September 23, 2011, 11:59 AM ET
By Melissa Isaacson | ESPNChicago.com

Twenty-six years after they dominated the NFL with a 15-1 season on the way to a victory in Super Bowl XX, the 1985 Chicago Bears will finally get a chance to be honored at the White House.

Though it has yet to be formally announced by the Bears or the White House, the ceremony is scheduled for Oct. 7, according to sources.

The original celebration was called off after the explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger plunged the nation into a state of mourning two days after the Bears defeated the New England Patriots 46-10 in New Orleans.

Steve McMichael said he would accept any invite that may come his way.

"Any time in the future the White House wants to honor me, it would be my honor and privilege to show up," said the former All-Pro defensive lineman. "I hope it happens. It's great news to me. We never got to be honored on the White House lawn like all the previous and future Super Bowl winners."

Mike Ditka, head coach of the '85 team, also said he would attend.

"To honor the '85 Bears?" he said. "Of course I'd go."

If there is any thought as to whether political leanings would affect decisions to go to Washington, initial reaction is that it would not.

"I don't care what president is in office and there's been a few," McMichael said. "It's about the world championship football team being honored on the White House lawn and that doesn't have anything to do with who's in office. If this is going to happen for us, I'm glad it's with a guy [President Obama] from Chicago.

"I'm sure when it was brought to his attention, a little light bulb went off."

The Bears commemorated the silver anniversary of their Super Bowl win last year. But 26 years later, the celebration apparently continues.

"It's a story for everybody to just hang in there and not quit," McMichael said, "because every dog has his day."

Melissa is a columnist for ESPNChicago.com.

Melissa Isaacson

Columnist, ESPNChicago.com
Melissa Isaacson is a columnist for espnW.com, ESPN Chicago and ESPN.com. The award-winning writer has covered Chicago sports for most of her 31-year career, including at the Chicago Tribune before joining ESPN in 2009. Isaacson has also covered tennis since 1986.

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