Ralph Hulse: Blackfoot's Biggest Fan
You've seen him hustling out to pick up the kicking tee after the start of a Blackfoot High School football game. You've also seen him making sure that all the Bronco basketball players are sufficiently hydrated during timeouts.
Ralph Hulse is more than just the Bronco's biggest fan. Ralph is the team manager and takes his responsibilities seriously.
Hulse gets things ready for the BHS teams before their games and looks out for the athletes. He tries to lift the players' spirits when they fall behind, and no one wants a win more.
“I make sure the chairs are in place during the basketball games, and that the balls are ready for the officials and hand them out to the players as they get ready for the warmups,” said Ralph. “In football, I just do whatever Coach Buck tells me to, but that is generally taking care of the ball so our quarterback always has his ball ready.”
If it seems Ralph has always been part of the program, you may be right. He was born and raised in Bingham County and has served as manager for the sports teams since he was a student at Blackfoot High School.
“I have been doing this job since I was in school, except for a couple of years when I moved away,” said Ralph. “I am really happy that when I moved back to Blackfoot the school was happy to have me back, and I have been doing it ever since.”
Ralph says he gets attached to the teams, and "when they lose, I feel that I lose too.”
Ralph has a great relationship with the teams and really likes the new coaching staffs for both the boys and girls basketball teams this year. He hopes they will "be able to turn around the poor seasons."
“I think a lot of Coach Hale and Coach Smith,” said Ralph. “I think that they both want the teams to win and will do their best in getting the players ready to play.”
Ralph has built several good friendships and relationships from his work on the sidelines as well.
“I really liked working with Coach Humpherys and his wife Tina,” said Ralph. “They were always so good to me and helped me along with this job and to be able to see their grandson [quarterback] Trae Pilster play and win a state championship was really special.”
Come rain or shine, you can count on finding Ralph on the Bronco sidelines. He will be there doing what he does best — cheering on his favorite teams and maintaining their gear on the sideline.
“I just love helping the kids out,” said Ralph. “They are all good kids and I have made a lot of friends doing this job over the years."
He ends by saying one of his favorite things... "Blackfoot football 2011 —number one.”