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Don Shula recalls whipping the ’85 Bears in White House visit

President Obama Hosts The 1972 Superbowl Champion Miami Dolphins

WASHINGTON, DC - AUGUST 20: First row, U.S. President Barack Obama (2nd L) is presented with a jersey by current team owner Stephen Ross (3rd L) as members of the 1972 Miami Dolphins, head coach Don Shula (R), quarterback Bob Griese (L), running back Larry Csonka (4th L) and other members look on during an East Room event August 20, 2013 at the White House in Washington, DC. President Obama hosted the undefeated 1972 Super Bowl champions who didnt get the chance to be honored at the White House back then. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

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Tuesday marked the second time that President Obama recognized one of the great teams in NFL history in a White House ceremony. The team that visited the White House on Tuesday, the 1972 Dolphins, reminded the president that they’re the only team to finish an NFL season with a perfect record.

When Obama brought the 1985 Bears to the White House, he called them the “greatest team ever.” Don Shula, the coach of the 1972 Dolphins, presented Obama with a signed jersey and urged him to give it prominent placement in the White House, so he could look at it and “think about the whipping we put on that ‘85 Bears team.”

The only game the ’85 Bears lost was to Shula’s Dolphins, a fact that Shula likes to point out when the question is raised about which team was the best ever.

Obama, who lived in Chicago in 1985, has made his allegiances clear, but he recognized that no other team has done what the ’72 Dolphins did.

“These guys were a juggernaut,” Obama said. “Team after team has fallen short, but these Dolphins didn’t always get the credit they deserved.”

Obama gave them the credit they deserved on Tuesday. Even if he’s still not convinced they’re better than the ’85 Bears.
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