YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Morning Briefing

When Ditka Floored a Wildcat

July 19, 1986

Mike Ditka, an All-American end at Pittsburgh, also played basketball for the school and says he'll never forget a game against Kentucky at Lexington during the 1959-60 season.

In his book, "Ditka, an Autobiography," he says: "We had a kid on our team from Kentucky who fouled out about five minutes into the game. I went in and was playing guard. They were running kind of an outside weave and they were picking me. The guard was getting some outside shots.

"I was guarding him and being a nice guy going around this pick all the time. So, finally they set a pick right in front of their bench. I weighed about 217 then and I was in good shape. I could run. I hit the guy as hard as I could. Knocked him into the third row.

"Adolph Rupp came after me, swearing at me, calling me nothing but a hatchetman. I gave him a couple of choice words back. It was reported that I said, 'You should know, you got a whole team of hatchetmen.' But I probably said something a little cruder than that. I think I told him to 'Shut up and sit down, you old goat.'

"Of course, it was sacrilegious down there to say anything to Coach Rupp. Me being not too smart and not a basketball player, it didn't matter."

Kentucky won the game, 73-66.

Trivia Time: Today's trivia is courtesy of John McGrath of the Denver Post. Only nine men have won consecutive Most Valuable Player awards in the major leagues; interestingly, all positions are represented. Name the players. (Answer below.)

What do NFL players do in the off-season? Here's how a few stayed occupied:

Linebacker Linden King (San Diego)--Worked the nightclub circuit in Hawaii as a singer, guitarist and keyboard player.

Defensive tackle Reggie White (Philadelphia)--As an ordained minister, he has preached in more than 100 churches, primarily in the Memphis area.

Tight end Mike Tice (Seattle)--Owns the Fill-Yer-Belly Deli in Redmond, Wash.

Quarterback Rick McIvor (St. Louis)--Owns a predator control company that removes bobcats, coyotes and mountain lions from ranches near Fort Davis, Tex.

Tight end Tim Wrightman (Chicago)--Took lessons in comedy from professional comedian Tom Dreesen, a Chicago native.

Said Napoleon McCallum, after a workout with the Raiders: "I felt scared out there. I didn't know a lot of the things. There are big guys out there, a lot different than it is at Navy. All those guys out there are kinda scary."

Asked how he'll keep in shape in the Navy, he said: "There's all sorts of aerobics and dance classes. I'll get Jane Fonda or something. There won't be any scrimmaging, but there will be Marines on the ship, so I'm sure we'll do something."

76 Years Ago Today: On July 19, 1910, 43-year-old Cy Young pitched the Cleveland Indians to a 5-4 victory over the Washington Senators in 11 innings for his 500th career win.

Trivia Answer: 1B--Jimmy Foxx; 2B--Joe Morgan; SS--Ernie Banks; 3B--Mike Schmidt; OF--Roger Maris; OF--Mickey Mantle; OF--Dale Murphy; C--Yogi Berra; P--Hal Newhouser.


Senior golfer Chi Chi Rodriguez, to a photographer who had taken at least 20 pictures of him: "Hey, who do you work for, the post office?"

Los Angeles Times Articles