Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 11/14/14

CHICAGO - OCTOBER 04: Head coach Lovie Smith of the Chicago Bears call defensive plays as his team takes on the Detroit Lions on October 4, 2009 at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. The Bears defeated the Lions 48-24. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Chicago Bears chairman George McCaskey said on Friday that Lovie Smith would be the head coach for the Chicago Bears in 2012, and new general manager Phil Emery would have the freedom to make a change at season's end.

"We told Phil when he came in that Lovie had to be the coach in 2012. He accepted that condition," McCaskey  told 'The Carmen, Jurko & Harry Show' on ESPN 1000. "We also told him that he would have the freedom to make a change if he thought it was necessary after 2012."

As if the pressure on Smith wasn't enough this year. The team went out and acquired pieces, like Brandon Marshall, to make the team more of a Super Bowl contender. Now it seems as if management has this season dubbed as Super Bowl or bust for Smith.

It's rather unfortunate for the coach entering his ninth season with the team and has a 71-57 regular season record. It also just so happens that the NFC North is stronger than its ever been.

Smith brought the Bears to the Super Bowl in 2006, but failed to make the post season is five of six season since.

"I said this when I first came in, we expect to be experts at our given jobs," Emery said. "Our goal is excellence and coming together to win championships."

Smith's contract runs through 2013 and he's said he isn't too concerned about it. Right now, he's more concerned with his team's performance in training camp leading up to the season and that he'd worry about a contract in the offseason.


This may not be the best time for a distraction like this as the Bears have been projected to finish third in the NFC North this season, despite how strong the makeup of their roster is.

Both the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions are coming off great seasons, and the division battle should go down to the wire.


Be sure to check out other great articles at Sports Media 101.

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