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Iron Mike’s wife didn’t worry about head injuries during Ditka’s playing days

House Hearing On NFL Retirement Benefits

House Hearing On NFL Retirement Benefits

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Updated: December 21, 2012 6:24AM



The Ditka File...

Legendary Bears coach Mike Ditka may be convalescing at home after a minor stroke and antsy to get back playing cards with his buddies at Bob-O-Link, but Sneed is reminded of a recent conversation with his wife, Diana, about her sideline concerns about football head injuries. ◆Quoth Diana: “Back in Mike’s day, doctors would always hold up three fingers, and the players would say three, whether or not they could see straight, because they knew that the doctor always held up three fingers. ◆“The effects of these injuries didn’t really worry me because Mike never really got hurt like that on the field. He never got carried off on a stretcher. He was so tough. ◆“But knowing what we do now about injuries to the head, that would definitely scare me. A lot of these young guys just think they are invincible. ◆“I think Mike just has a hard head, so it probably has not affected him yet. But he has a lot of aches and pains from football. ◆“But it hasn’t affected Mike’s memory or anything like that . . . when he can’t remember where he lives, I’ll let you know.”

Pssst!...

Sneed hears rumbles President Barack Obama may be thinking of picking former Secretary of State/National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice as a member of his Cabinet. Stay tuned for news on this possible “Team of Rivals” move.

The Preggers Patrol ...

The Royal Bunting? The latest word via the Brit royal bassinet sweepstakes is an interview in an Australian magazine quoting a close friend of Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, and her hubby, Prince William — who claims an announcement the world has been waiting to hear is at hand next month. ◆To wit: Kate’s old schoolmate, Jessica Hay, who was also invited to the royal wedding says Kate will deliver “wonderful, happy news” in December. “William and Kate are focused on starting a family,” Hay says.

Its got royal bump watchers going batty.

The Waukegan Warrior ...

Sneed’s old pal, legal eagle Robert Barnett, has been retained by former CIA director General David Petraeus, to help steer him through the aftermath of a media nightmare caused by a mistress — which has resulted in probes on three fronts: the CIA, Justice Department, and Capitol Hill.

“I love you dearly, Mike, but I cannot make any comment on this,” said Barnett, who hails from Waukegan. ◆The upshot: You can bet this isn’t about a book deal engineered by Barnett the Barrister of Big Book Deals written by political giants ... not yet, anyway.

Rahm ‘em ...

The Rahm/Rhiana connection: Sneed hears new Rhodes scholar and Englewood native Rhiana Gunn-Wright was coached by Rahm’s niece, Gabby, through the interview and applications process. ◆The stats: Rhiana, who graduated magna cum laude from Yale University in 2011, majored in African-American Studies and Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies. Gabby Emanuel was a Rhodes scholar last year and is the daughter of Rahm’s brother, Ezekiel.

Obama drama ...

Pronounce ‘em: President Barack Obama, who is reportedly a huge fan (aren’t we all) of Burmese heroine/human rights activist Aung San Sui Kyi, mispronounced her name during a press briefing while visiting the legendary Nobel Prize winner in her country — now known as Myanmar.

Translation: Obama called her Aung YAN Sui Kyi.

Mitt & Michelle ...

First lady Michelle Obama and her mom, Marian Robinson, went to see singer Aretha Franklin at DC’s Constitution Hall on Saturday night ... Meanwhile, former Obama opponent Mitt Romney took wife Ann to see the final Twilight movie, “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part II” in Del Mar, Calif., on Saturday night. (The book’s author, Stephenie Meyer, is a Mormon.)

I Spy ...

Baseball veteran Rickey Henderson was spotted at Harry Caray’s Italian Steakhouse in Rosemont Friday for dinner ... Late night TV talkie Craig Ferguson dining at Chicago Cut Thursday afternoon before his big show in Chicago ... Motown’s Berry Gordy and Suzanne de Passe spotted at RL for dinner Friday.

Sneedlings ...

Tuesday’s birthdays... Joe Biden Jr., 70; Steve Dahl, 58; and Beth Heller, 37.



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