It is shocking to hear Bull recite these grievous crimes against the spirit and charter of the United Nations, mostly because he is so absolutely unconcerned about them. "What?" he says. "Me get mad? Why should I get mad? It's all part of the game. That's why you've-got to respect those guys." Added the business administration major from Baylor: "It's a matter of dollars and cents."
Bull is careful to compliment opposition defensemen when they land a good tackle on him, and if his gorge does rise, he fights it down. In the Green Bay game opening day, he was hit by an especially savage elbow as he was skittering along the ground being tackled. "Nice elbow! Nice elbow! Nice elbow!" Bull shouted angrily as the referee came running up.
"You were still in motion," the referee said.
Bull presented a wide smile to elbower and referee alike. "I know it, Mr. Referee," he said. "All I said was, 'Nice elbow!' "
Bull talks the way he plays football—animatedly, efficiently, zestfully. More than many pro athletes, he took a genuine education away from his university (and made the All-America Academic Football Team). He speaks good English with only a slight touch of Texas, the opposite of many a Texan now in the pro leagues. In the wintertime, he works for the Harvey Advertising Co. of Waco, Texas ("Eye Opening Ideas That Increase Profits"), and his business card, which is difficult to avoid getting, features one of those eyes that blink as you turn it. Bull is also promoting a portable footwarmer for sports events. "It didn't go too well in Texas," he says, "but up here in the North we have high hopes for it." He also lectures. Does all this off-field activity interfere with his concentration on football?
"No, sir," said Bull. "Nothing interferes with my football. If anything, I'm too serious about the game. My wife says to me each Sunday, 'Now you be sure and look up at me at least once during the game.' I say, 'Honey, when I'm on that field I'm not thinking about you or the baby or the agency or anything else in this world. When I'm on the field I'm nothing but football.'
"You know something?" he added in a confidential tone of voice. "When I'm out there on that field with a football in my hand, I don't even know I'm married." Ronnie Bull gave a little laugh, and his green eyes turned to brown and back to green.