Ed Hochuli was NFL fans’ favorite ref. Jeff Triplette... not so much.
Ed Hochuli and Jeff Triplette, two of the NFL’s most recognizable referees, have retired, the league announced Tuesday.
They will be replaced former side judge Alex Kemp and Hochuli’s son Shawn, a former back judge.
Hochuli was as close to a fan favorite as a ref can be, known as much for calling a clean game as his bulging biceps. He had been an NFL referee since 1992, following two years as a back judge, and is a practicing attorney. He was the referee in Super Bowl XXXII and Super Bowl XXXVIII.
Triplette, on the other hand, was perhaps the league’s most derided official. He and his crew repeatedly bungled calls, making him a household name for all the wrong reasons. To make matters worse, he was frequently assigned to playoff games, despite the fact those assignments are supposed to be doled out based on performance. News of Triplette’s impending retirement broke on Jan. 7, one day after he botched a key call in the Chiefs-Titans playoff game.