On Thursday morning the NFL released the names of 12 new officials that will be taking the field for the first time at the professional level in 2014, and there was one very notable name on that list. It’s the son of long-time NFL referee, Ed Hochuli.
Shawn Hochuli will be making the move to the NFL after spending the last few years of his career at the collegiate level as a Pac-12 official. He will begin his professional career as a side judge this season, where he can only hope to eventually become as respected among those affiliated with the league as his father has.
The younger Hochuli is part of the biggest referee turnover that the league has ever seen. For the past few seasons, officiating has come under more scrutiny than ever before which has resulted in the largest officiating roster turnover in the last 12 years.
Still, it’ll be rather interesting to see how these rookie officials do. Just like a player adjusting to the league after being drafted out of college, there’s a lot that these new refs need to get accustomed to, which might not necessarily downgrade the criticism of the refs right off the bat in 2014.