Tag Archives: ultimate wlaf 1992

Hochuli, Ed

Ultimate World League 1992, #190

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

CAREER SNAPSHOT:

  • 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.

NOTES:

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’.

Naposki, Eric

Card: Ultimate World League 1991
Acquired: TTM 2020, C/o Prison
Sent: 5/9 Received: 5/18 (9 days)

CAREER SNAPSHOT:

  • Eric Naposki played college football at UConn where he excelled as a hard hitting outside linebacker.
  • In 1988, as a street free agent, he literally slipped onto the Patriots, by sneaking a number from a registration table, getting a tryout and then later making the final cuts.

  • Appeared on special teams in 3 games, but injuries derailed his career from continuing forward. 

  • Eric went on to sign with the Colts Cowboys and the Jets, but did not see significant playing time.

  • Experienced his greatest success after joining the Barcelona Dragons of the World League of American Football in 1991.

  • In his first season with the team, Naposki recorded 51 total tackles, an interception for a TD, 2 forced fumbles, and 7 sacks. 

  • Was arguably one of the most popular players on the team and even had his own fan club thanks in part to his Spanish fluency.

  • Upon returning stateside injuries again prevented him from moving forward, although he was in camp with the Washington Redskins.
  • Returned to the Dragons in 1992  but the league reorganized after the season.

  • Retired later that year after injuries continued to dog him, this time in camp with the Seattle Seahawks. 

  • After a few years off, Naposki returned to the Dragons in 1996, winning World Bowl 97.
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ACCOLADES:

  • Barcelona Dragons Hall of Fame

NOTES:

As this was a first for me, it should be noted, that yes, I wrote Eric in prison for his autograph. While this may seem wrong to many, I do not presume to give fame to him or the crimes that were committed in regards to this case- rather my solicitation for his signature is an attempt by me to frame a certain time in our lives when things were more simple and innocent.

Eric wrote me a long and impassioned letter on multiple slips of paper talking to me about the time he played in the World League. He also included a copy of these copies of his accomplishments from his playing days, and thanked me for writing him. Erik was convicted of murder in 2012, and received life without parole. The case itself is not without its warts, as he was convicted on purely circumstantial evidence, and a loss of exculpatory evidence, partially due to a delay in the prosecution of the case. -He has always maintained his innocence. Currently his case is under investigation by a 501 nonprofit legal organization

that is committed to exonerating individuals who claim to have been wrongly convicted. From what I understand he also passes the time working as a member of the California Wildfire Inmate team.

I am not sure if Eric’s card is an error card or not as it spells his name Erik, and so does the Barcelona Dragons article above, however in most media it is spelled Eric.

Horne, Greg

Card: Ultimate World League 1992
Acquired: TTM 2020, C/o Work
Sent: 6/11 Received: 6/19 (8 days)
Failure: TTM 2020, C/o Home

Greg Horne punted at Arkansas during the SWC days and at one point was paired alongside future World League kicker Kendall John Trainor. Over his 4 years at Fayetteville, Greg punted 180 times for 8000 yards on the dot. In his Senior year of 1986, Greg boomed 49 punts for a 47.2 yard average earning him All-American Honors. (Coincidentally this is the highest average in Conference history.)

Horne was selected by the Bengals in the 5th round of the 1987 draft. During the strike shortened season of 1987, he’d split time with the Bengals and the St. Louis Cardinals, averaging 40.2 yards per punt on 43 attempts. He’d travel to Phoenix with the Cardinals franchise in ’88, and start a whole 16 game slate, punting 79 times for 3228 yards, with 16 punts inside the 20.

After a 2 year hiatus, he’d join the World League of American Football in 1991, and was selected by the London Monarchs with the 5th pick of the positional draft. He’d punt 37 times for the powerhouse Monarchs, averaging 38.7 yards per punt, and drop 11 of those inside the 20.

With Chris Mohr departed for the NFL, the Montreal Machine had Monte Robbins but at some point during the season, Greg came in and took over the starting punter duties. He’d have the best season of his career punting 19 times for 821 yards, a 43.2 yard average, and drop 4 punts inside the 20.

After retiring, Greg returned to Arkansas and is currently in radio.

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