Tag Archives: hochules

Hochuli, Ed

Ultimate World League 1992, #190

Cards: Ultimate W
Acquired: TTM 2022, C/o Work
Sent: 2/7 Received: 3/5 (26 days)


  • Worked all levels of refereeing from Pop Warner on up to the NFL ranks.
  • Has been a lawyer since 1983.
  • Began working NFL games in 1990 as a line judge.
  • NFL liked him so much, they sent him to the WLAF for seasoning.
  • Spent the 1991 and 92 seasons as a referee.
  • Returned to the NFL and quickly climbed into a referee position.
  • Served as head of the NFL Referees Association.
  • Retired from refereeing in 2017 but as of 2022 continues his work as a lawyer.


I asked Ed about his World League experience, and if had any great memories of the league.

I really enjoyed the World League, because the NFL decided to try me out as head Referee in the World League in 1991.  I had never Refereed (the crew chief / white hat) in high school or college, so it was a surprise when they put me at that position, and I guess they were really desperate, because that next year in the NFL, they moved me to Referee in the NFL.  And I definitely worked several games in San Antonio, so no doubt you and your Dad were booing me a lot? 

What a small world. I am sure after the game I walked right by Ed and didn’t look up- and yes, we probably booed him on quite a few occasions.

In RE: to the hardest calls/ penalties to throw…

Your other question was about the toughest thing to call . . . regardless of the type of foul, some are very obvious and some are very close.  It was the close ones – just enough to make it illegal – that were the toughest.  I’d say Roughing the passer was the toughest of those.  Some were easy, but some of them were very close, and it happens so fast, you’ve got to be ready! 

The World League was experimenting with ‘In the Grasp’ and other QB roughing penalties at this time, so I can totally understand his problem with this.

Ed is well respected among referees, and even developed sort of a cult following because of his shredded arms, with Phil Simms comically referring to him as ‘Hochules’.