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Video: Former umpire Bob Boylston reflects on his career

Two years ago, former umpire-turned-replay-official Bob Boylston sat down with NFL Films to reflect on his career.

Boylston came to the NFL from the SEC in 1978. He wore number 101 for most of his career (except from 1979-81 when he wore number five when there was a different numbering system) and was always an umpire.

He was a highly rated official who worked several playoff games, including Super Bowls XXI and XXVI.  

Boylston’s career was cut short in 1998 when he broke his hip in a collision during a ball game. He regrets he didn’t quit sooner because … well, I’ll let him  tell you why.

After leaving the field, Boylston was a replay official and was in the booth for the Music City Miracle. He paged referee Phil Luckett to take a look at the Frank Wychek—to—Kevin Dyson backward pass to see if it was truly backward. Boylston agreed with Luckett’s ruling to let the play stand.

Enjoy Boylston’s walk down memory lane, including an outtake at the end when the Alabama veteran asks if he talks better than another famous official with a southern drawl, Gerald Austin.


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Mark Schultz
Mark Schultz is a high school football official, freelance writer and journalist. He first became interested in officiating when he was six years old, was watching a NFL game with his father and asked the fateful question, "Dad, what are those guys in the striped shirts doing?"

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