The whole year has been rather interesting ever since George McCaskey officially took over as Chairman of the Board. In a move that really didn't surprise anyone, Michael McCaskey formally handed over the reigns to his position on May 5th, 2011. Prior to that, George McCaskey was Vice Chairman of the team back in 2010, and before that, was the Ticket Manager ever since 1991. So, people would point out he has some knowledge of the financial part of the business. Yet another financial guru in a football business. Yawn...
The results that came one season after his promotion, was a complete shock, and was a shot heard 'round the world. On January 3rd, 2012, after yet again failing to make the post-season, Jerry Angelo was fired immediately in a move absolutely nobody expected. Prior to that date, people assumed business was going as usual, where Jerry Angelo was planning for Free Agency, as well as the Upcoming Draft. George McCaskey, in one fell swoop, said otherwise. Generally, the McCaskeys would not "fire" a member of the Front Office, until their contract runs out, since they would then have to swallow the dead cash which was remaining on their respective contract. Ted Phillips was said to have made the decision, as it was him who made the official statement, and not George McCaskey. But, contrary to those reports, people have speculated it was a decision pressed onto him by George McCaskey himself, where the scene to this day is covered head to toe in George McCaskey's fingerprints. To this day, reporters such as Silvy and Waddle on ESPN 1000, as well as Dan Pompei, all believe this was purely George McCaskey's decision, and nobody else's. So why am I bringing this up today?
Over the past 24 hours, talks have been heating up regarding Lovie Smith's future, and as I posted on today's Den, it has come to my attention George McCaskey may be preparing to pull the ejection handle on Lovie Smith. With no confirmed source (aka complete rumor), Silvy stated rather boldly on yesterday's radio cap, that George McCaskey wants a coaching change at season's end. Supposedly according to a source, George McCaskey has had enough of losing to the Green Bay Packers, and made his decision after his most recent loss to the Packers at home, barring any playoff magic if the Bears make it that far. Does that have any true weight to it? No, since it would have been major news if the stories and sources would have been confirmed by any of the larger news agencies. Seeing how not even ESPN Chicago typed a story regarding that information, it's safe to say it's complete hear/say stemming from Silvy.
What I have been able to confirm, though, is George McCaskey has a definite say in Lovie Smith's immediate future with the franchise, as Dan Pompei typed this up on today's Q&A board:
The area is grayer still because of the presence of George McCaskey as chairman of the board. Don’t forget he was running the ticket office, not the team, when Smith was hired. Now McCaskey is going to have a say in whether Smith should be retained as the head coach, just like he had a say in whether Jerry Angelo should have been retained as the general manager.
Notice how he points out that George McCaskey indeed did have a say in Jerry Angelo's firing, much like what is widely believed to have been "his" move. The question becomes, what is George McCaskey truly planning to do if Lovie Smith doesn't make the playoffs? Will he pressure Phil Emery and Ted Phillips into firing Lovie Smith, will he allow Lovie Smith one final year to win the Super Bowl, or will George McCaskey take matters into his own hands, and hand out pink slips to everyone not named Phil Emery? Nobody knows what in the world George McCaskey plans to do in the very near future. Only he and his fellow staff know that answer. All we can do, is sit around our respective computers, and speculate.
But, what I can tell each and every single one of you who chose to read this, is George McCaskey is the ultimate "X-Factor" this off-season, and that anything is a possibility. So, stay tuned.
And now, the usual poll:
(Coming soon(?): Bears Head Coaching Extravaganza!)