Four downs with Ditka
BY MIKE DITKA November 23, 2013 2:00AM
Updated: December 25, 2013 6:15AM
1. How would you rate the job Marc Trestman has done in his first 10 games?
I think he’s done a fantastic job. I mean, the number of injuries they’ve had — your quarterback, best defensive back, best linebacker — and yet they’ve overcome them. That’s unbelievable. It’s all in front of them, and they know what they have to do in these last six games. I think he’s done a helluva job, and I’m very impressed.
2. Most years, the Bears are built around defense. Are you finding them more fun to watch with their creative offense?
Defense is an essential part of the game. I think it’s important to have a strong defense because it allows you to operate your offense. A good defense doesn’t put you under constant pressure, playing catch-up. But the offense Marc runs is very good. He utilizes all the weapons: [Matt] Forte, the receivers, tights ends. I think that’s all you can ask.
3. Do you like instant replay?
Instant replay is good for this reason: If you can right a wrong, then go ahead and do it. Nobody is infallible. Officiating is a hard job; you’re going to miss calls. You’re going to make a call that really wasn’t what you thought it was. You get disappointed, but, hey, it’s a hard job. Overall, though, the consistency in the officiating this year has not been that good.
4. You chose to go to Pitt over Penn State, and it had nothing to do with football. Tell the story.
When I came out of high school, I wanted to be a dentist. My high school coach in Aliquippa [Pa.] wanted me to go to dental school, so that’s why I chose Pitt. It was easier for me to get into dental school there. Joe Paterno recruited me at Penn State. I loved Joe. He was a terrific friend and a terrific guy. I loved everything about him. So, at that second, I decided to go to Pitt. I don’t regret it. But that’s what happened because I wanted to be a dentist.