Trestman Faces Favorite Boyhood Team Sunday

Bears coach rooted, tried out and coached for Vikings

Six miles west of the Metrodome, a young Marc Trestman could be found in his suburban home watching the Vikings on Sundays.

"It was all about watching football," Trestman recalled Friday. "It was all about watching the Vikings. Everything stopped."

At St. Louis Park High School, Trestman grew up wanting to be the next Fran Tarkenton, and like every kid in in the Twin Cities, he bled purple and gold.

"There's no doubt!" Trestman said recalling his boyhood trips to training camp getting autographs. "I remember every one. It's part of your foundation and love of the game."

A 1974 St. Louis Park High School yearbook photo shows Trestman in quarterback mode, tucking and running with the caption "the new breed of QB is one who can run as well as pass, Senior Marc Trestman."

"That's not right!" Trestman laughed. "I must have had some family on the staff because that wasn't true."

And in true quarterback coach form he then critiqued his form.

"I'm not protecting the ball properly," he said.

Trestman admits he was a quiet teenager, yet he still remembers every single coach he had growing up, not to mention the sense of community, the locker rooms, the friendships. It's why he now takes time to spend time with his players getting to know them.

He is modest in talking about his accomplishments, but Trestman earned All Conference, All State and All American honors before continuing his career at the University of Minnesota and Minnesota State. His first NFL job was on Bud Grant's staff with the Vikings.

Trestman played basketball and football against the sons of the Viking coach and even went to the Vikings' training camp where Grant cut him -- twice.

But Trestman says the stars were aligned in 1985 when he joined Grant's staff as the Hall of Fame coach's running backs coach.

Twenty eight years into his coaching career, and eight NFL teams later, it won't be hard to separate his affection for the Vikings when his Bears play Sunday.

"We're here to compete and do what we can do as Chicago Bears to win a game on Sunday, that will be our focus," Trestman says.

As for his Dad, Jerry Trestman, loyalties may be tested on Sunday.

"My dad knows exactly where he's going to be," Trestman laughed. "He's always going to be a Chicago Bear fan."

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