By Budd Bailey, Buffalo Sports Page Columnist

Everyone in Buffalo was excited when Jim Kelly arrived as a refugee from the United States Football League. They would have been more excited had they known that Kelly was bringing along a friend.

Kent Hull had been the center for the New Jersey Generals for three seasons. He helped Herschel Walker rush for a pro record 2,411 yards in 1985. But he was looking for work once the USFL folded, and he signed with Buffalo.

As a rookie, Hull immediately replaced Will Grant as the team’s starting center. He teamed up with guards Jim Ritcher and Will Wolford to form the middle of an improving offensive line. When the Bills unveiled their no-huddle offense a few years later, Hull proved to be the perfect man to coordinator offensive line calls. He was a huge part of the team’s run of four straight Super Bowl appearances.

Hull missed two games in his career as a Bill, and retired at the age of 35 in 1996. He might have been missed the most by the media, who had come to his locker after games over the years for insight about what actually happened. No wonder the reporters threw him a retirement party; no one can remember that happening before or since.

Here’s a recap of Hull’s career:

(Follow Budd on Twitter @WDX2BB)

Budd Bailey

Budd Bailey has been involved in almost every aspect of the local sports scene for the last 40 years. He worked for WEBR Radio, the Buffalo Sabres' public relations department and The Buffalo News during that time. In that time he covered virtually every aspect of the area's sports world, from high schools to the Bills and Sabres and everything in between. Along the way, Budd served as a play-by-play announcer for the Bisons, an analyst for the Stallions, and a talk-show host. He won the National Lacrosse League's Tom Borrelli Award as the media personality of the year in 2011, and was a finalist for that same award in 2017. Budd's seventh and eighth books, one on the Transcontinental Railroad and the other about Ichiro Suzuki, are scheduled to be released in the fall.

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