New York City-born college basketball coach and commentator Al McGuire (1928-2001) was known for his colorful language. He was quoted by Sports Illustrated in 1976:
“If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili will be good.”
Tom Crean, who coached Marquette University (after McGuire’s famous success there), said in 2002:
“There’s a little restaurant near campus where Coach Al liked to go, and the chili is good there. I think what he was saying was, ‘There are more to some things than meet the eye.’”
Wikipedia: Al McGuire
Alfred James “Al” McGuire (September 7, 1928 – January 26, 2001) was the head coach of the Marquette University men’s basketball team from 1964 to 1977. He won a national championship at Marquette and was later inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1992. He was also well known as a longtime national television basketball broadcaster and for his colorful personality.
Originally Posted: November 29, 1976
Welcome to His World
Perhaps you can figure out Al McGuire of Marquette, a basketball coach who is credit-card-wise, likes to skip the French pastry and get down to the numbers
BY FRANK DEFORD
In Al McGuire’s office at Marquette, images of sad clowns abound. Pictures, all over the place, of sad clowns. Everybody must ask him about them. McGuire is touted to be a con, so the sad clowns have got to be a setup.
He should be locked in a bicentennial time capsule so that generations yet unborn will understand what this time was really like. There will be all the computers and radar ovens and Instamatics, and McGuire will pop out from among them in 2176 and say. “If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili will be good.”
6 March 1977, Independent, Press-Telegram (Long Beach, CA), “Al McGuire: Coach, philosopher, comedian—college basketball won’t be quite the same” by Loel Schrader, pg. S-3, col. 3:
“If the waitress has dirty feet, the chili will be good.”
1 February 1987, The Oregonian (Portland, OR), “Frank Deford: Ever a bonus” by Steve Duin, pg. C1, col. 1:
“There will be all the computers and radar ovens and Instamatics, and McGuire will pop out from among them in 2176 and say, ‘If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili will be good.’”
(Frank Deford, talking about Al McGuire.—ed.)
For the Love of Mankind:
Daily Thoughts on Philanthropy, Personal Values, Nonprofit Management and Fund Raising
By Jim Norvell
Lincoln, NE: iUniverse.com, Inc.
If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili should be good.
New York (NY) Times
COLLEGE BASKETBALL; McGuire’s Spirit Helps Marquette Rise
By IRA BERKOW
Published: March 13, 2002
MILWAUKEE, March 11— ‘’If the waitress has dirty ankles,’’ Al McGuire once said, ‘’the chili is good.’’
Maybe he meant it as an axiom of pure fact. Maybe it was just a metaphor for some larger point about life, which was McGuire’s quixotic style.
It was, however, left to those McGuire left behind—he died Jan. 26, 2001—to figure out. McGuire, the one-time head coach of Marquette, has left an enduring, beloved, winning—but also sometimes inscrutable—legacy.
“There’s a little restaurant near campus where Coach Al liked to go,’’ Tom Crean, the current coach of Marquette, said with a smile, ‘’and the chili is good there. I think what he was saying was, ‘There are more to some things than meet the eye.’”
Lobby of the Al McGuire Center. Guy had some great quotes. “If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili is good.”
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6:01 PM - 20 Dec 2014
“@iamtimfrisby89: “"If the waitress has dirty ankles, the chili is good.” ~ Al McGuire” they don’t make them like him any more
9:05 PM - 19 Jan 2015
New York City • Restaurants/Bars/Bakeries/Food Stores • Sunday, October 18, 2015 • Permalink