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Seven first-year NFL officials among 2018 class

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  • By National Football League
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The NFL roster of game officials for the 2018 season will include seven first-year NFL officials among the group of 121, the league announced today.

Field judge Land Clark (Pac-12), field judge Matt Edwards (Big Ten), side judge Chad Hill (SEC), field judge Anthony Jeffries (SEC), back judge Tony Josselyn (SEC), line judge Mark Stewart (Big 12) and field judge Don Willard (Big Ten) will make their NFL officiating debuts this season.

Four officials -- Shawn Hochuli, Alex Kemp, Clay Martin, and Shawn Smith -- have been promoted to referee for the upcoming season. Each of them were referees at the highest level of college football prior to entering the NFL at different positions and have been part of the NFL's Referee Training Program from their first season in the league.

Both Shawn Hochuli (Ed Hochuli) and Alex Kemp (Stan Kemp) are the sons of former NFL referees.

Two sets of fathers and sons are included among the roster of officials -- Walt Coleman, the dean of NFL officials entering his 30th season, and his son, Walt IV; and Steve Freeman and his son, Brad -- and three sets of brothers -- Allen and Rusty Baynes; Jeff and Jerry Bergman; and Carl, Dino & Perry Paganelli.

Steve Freeman and Phil McKinnely are the only current game officials to have also enjoyed NFL playing careers. Freeman played for 13 seasons, including 12 as a defensive back with the Buffalo Bills from 1975-86. McKinnely played for seven seasons on the offensive line from 1976-82, including five seasons with the Atlanta Falcons from 1976-80.

Click here for the complete 2018 NFL roster of officials, including crew assignments, which may change during the season due to injury, schedule conflicts, etc.

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