The next NFL season will have a Hochuli among their staff of zebras, but it won’t be Ed.
It was announced on Tuesday that Shawn Hochuli has been promoted from back judge to referee, while Shawn’s dad, Ed Hochuli, will call it a career after 26 years as a head official, and 28 overall in the NFL.
The 67-year-old Hochuli is known for his muscular physique, as well as his often lengthy (over)explanations for calls made on the field. I guess that’s the attorney side in him. He even famously cost the San Diego Chargers a win against the Denver Broncos, and admitted his screw-up right away.
From a Seahawks point of view, Hochuli reffed what stood at the time as the biggest win in franchise history, as Seattle reached Super Bowl XL with a 34-14 win over the Carolina Panthers in the 2005 NFC Championship Game. In more recent times, Hochuli and his crew drew the ire of Seahawks fans for the lopsided penalty count in Seattle’s 2016 loss at the New Orleans Saints. Seattle had 11 accepted penalties for 76 yards, whereas New Orleans only had 2 flags, both of them were false starts. Pick plays are a pain in the ass, aren’t they?
Also retiring from the game is Jeff Triplette, whose team took away three Percy Harvin touchdowns on a Monday night against Washington. Oh yeah, and also this was somehow ruled a touchdown for the Cincinnati Bengals back in 2013. He will be remembered less fondly than Hochuli, to put it kindly.
Replacing Triplette is side judge Alex Kemp, who is the son of the late Stan Kemp, a former NFL referee who retired after being diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and was replaced by none other than Ed Hochuli.