Bears great Steve McMichael remains hospitalized; family hopes to have him home Friday

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago Bears great Steve McMichael was spending at least another night in the hospital after his family hoped he would return home on Thursday, publicist Betsy Shepherd said.

The 66-year-old McMichael, who went public with an ALS diagnosis three years ago, was admitted into intensive care at a suburban hospital last Thursday with a urinary tract infection. He was hospitalized one week after being voted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The family announced Saturday he had developed MRSA, a staph infection that can be difficult to treat because it is resistant to certain antibiotics, and was undergoing a blood transfusion. They initially hoped to have him back home on Tuesday and then pushed it back to Thursday.

McMichael, who controlled the interior of the line for the Bears’ famed “46 defense,” was an All-Pro during the 1985 Super Bowl championship season and in 1987. He played in a franchise-record 191 consecutive games from 1981-1993 and ranks second to Hall of Famer Richard Dent on the Bears’ career sacks list with 92 1/2. His final season was with Green Bay in 1994.

Whether he was harassing opponents or discussing the Bears on sports talk radio, the man known as “Ming The Merciless” and “Mongo” after the character in “Blazing Saddles” who knocked out a horse, remained a prominent presence in Chicago long after his playing days ended. He also spent five years in professional wrestling in the late 1990s.