There’s no need to worry; the Florida Gators are going to eliminate the penalties. Well, they’re going to try. Eliminating something that happens that often is near impossible. So they’ll say eliminate, but they mean cut back.
The Gators will be punished for penalties. Each penalty committed will result in up-and-downs during practice. The entire offensive or defensive unit will be punished if one of their players commits a penalty. Will it work? Time will tell. It might be motivation to not commit penalties, but things change during game environments.
The Gators were penalized roughly 83 times (14) for 471 yards (106) against the Bowling Green Falcons in the season opener. Just how bad is that? Florida averaged 7.69 penalties per game in 2011, which was good (or bad) for 114th in nation. Against Bowling Green, they almost had twice as many. That’s not first-game jitters; that’s a problem.
Will Muschamp also pointed out that some of the better teams commit a large number of penalties. Sorry Coach, but that’s not what anyone wants to hear or what you need to be saying. The Gators (and here’s the apology to all of us fans) aren’t one of the nation’s better teams right now. They are a team trying to build something under a second-year head coach. A penalty here and there might not hurt Alabama or USC or LSU; they can kill Florida.
Eliminate them, cut them back, do whatever. Just don’t say “well, but, it’s not all that bad because…” Fix it.