Jaguars owner Shahid Khan admires, looks up to McCaskey family
BY SEAN JENSEN firstname.lastname@example.org October 6, 2012 4:36PM
Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shahid Khan, right, inducts former running back Fred Taylor into the team's Pride of the Jaguars honorary group during a halftime ceremony of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Jacksonville, Fla., Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012.(AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Miller weighs in
Jim Miller has dealt with the pressure of being the Bears’ starting quarterback.
‘‘It’s a different animal than anywhere else I’ve ever played, and that includes Pittsburgh,’’ said Miller, an analyst for Comcast SportsNet Chicago and Sirius NFL Radio.
In the second quarter Monday against the Cowboys, Jay Cutler walked away when offensive coordinator Mike Tice sat next to him on the bench.
While Miller said he could understand Cutler’s side of things, he said Cutler has to take accountability for his actions, too.
‘‘You can always play the blame game,’’ Miller said. ‘‘But you’re the one who is standing at the podium, and you can control the message. The bottom line is, the media are doing their job. They’re reporting stories and key turning points in a game, and the quarterback’s reaction and walking away from the OC is a big story.
‘‘Understand it, own up to it, be honest about it and move on.’’
It only has been four games, but backup running back Michael Bush already has proved to be a good signing. Bush has scored three touchdowns, and he has 180 rushing yards.
More impressive, though, is that he’s tied for second in clutch runs, according to STATS.
Clutch runs are defined as any runs on third- or fourth-down that result in a touchdown or a first down. The Texans’ Arian Foster is first with seven, followed by Bush and the Bengals’ BenJarvus Green-Ellis with six.
Updated: November 8, 2012 11:53AM
Shahid Khan, a native of Pakistan, fell for football in the fall of 1967.
An engineering student at the University of Illinois, Khan sat in the basement of his fraternity, Beta Theta Pi, and marveled at the game being played.
‘‘That’s the first time I saw football in my life,’’ Khan told me. ‘‘It was a Bears game, and everyone in the room was a Bears fan.’’
But the Bears are Khan’s second-favorite team now that he owns the Jacksonville Jaguars. His $760 million purchase of the team was finalized in January.
The first minority owner in the NFL, Khan arrived in Champaign at 16 with $500 his father had given him. He earned his degree and worked at Flex-N-Gate, a small automobile manufacturing company he eventually would buy and transform into a global force.
Khan nearly purchased a 60 percent share of the St. Louis Rams in 2010, but minority shareholder Stan Kroenke exercised a clause that enabled him to match the bid.
So did Khan ever inquire about his beloved Bears?
‘‘I can tell you that [with] that team, I don’t look for a change for a long time,’’ Khan said diplomatically. ‘‘Socially, I’ve known Mike McCaskey for a long time, maybe 10 years or more. And it’s not something you ask. It’s pretty obvious.’’
Bears founder George Halas, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1963, left the club to his daughter, Virginia Halas McCaskey, upon his death in 1983. Michael McCaskey was the Bears’ president from 1983 to 1999, when he became their chairman. George McCaskey took over as chairman last year.
Khan said it’s rare that a fan of any professional sports franchise becomes the owner.
‘‘Dan Snyder is really the exception,’’ Khan said. ‘‘If you look at some of the other team sales, there are more people who were a football fan and an opportunity came and they ended up in a different area [of the country]. It’s like life.’’
Khan said he met Michael McCaskey through a number of organizations long before he even dreamed of buying an NFL team.
‘‘I think the world of him,’’ Khan said of McCaskey, a passionate photographer who will take photos of the game Sunday from the sidelines at EverBank Field.
Khan also will host the McCaskey family before the game.
Khan said he respects and looks up to the McCaskeys because he intends to keep the Jaguars in his family. His son Tony is the senior vice president of football technology and analytics for the Jaguars.
‘‘It is a great family business,’’ Shahid Khan said. ‘‘I can say that now with a greater amount of certainty. It’s small enough and passionate enough that it’s the ideal family business.’’