First came the call. Next, he requested permission from two of his bosses at Northwestern University. And then, as suddenly as a pick-six on the field, Wildcats coach Pat Fitzgerald owned a seat on an Illinois ethics panel designed to reform what’s arguably the nation’s most corrupt government.
The request surprised Fitzgerald; he’s no political junkie, and his investigation into recent scandals stretched no further than the local papers and their 60-point headlines. When most folks hear Pat Fitzgerald and Illinois government, they think of the famous federal prosecutor, not the guy from the gridiron.