Gators tackle penalties

Florida's Trey Burton runs upfield against a Louisiana-Lafayette player during the first half of the Florida-Louisiana-Lafayette game at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.

DOUG FINGER/Special to the Guardian
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 1:47 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 1:47 p.m.

The screams from Florida coach Will Muschamp will be a little louder in practice this week.



What: No. 7 University of Florida Gators against Jacksonville State (Ala.) University Gamecocks.
When: 1 p.m. Saturday.
Where: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, aka The Swamp.
TV/Radio: PPV, 850 AM, 103.7 FM.
Information: Visit or

UF committed 10 penalties for 79 yards in last Saturday's 27-20 win over Louisiana-Lafayette. It was the fourth game this season where the Gators were flagged 10 or more times.

"Obviously, the penalties just killed us in the game. And they were penalties," Muschamp said. "We've talked about it and we're gonna re-emphasize it again. We've emphasized it every day in every situation we could. We've benched guys, we've done everything we can do. I'm gonna find another way."

UF has had a touchdown called back in its last three home games. Against Louisiana-Lafayette, the Gators came out of a timeout facing third-and-goal with 18 seconds left in the first half. Quarterback Jeff Driskel threw a two-yard touchdown pass to Quinton Dunbar, but it was negated because of an illegal formation.

Fortunately for Florida, there were offsetting penalties and they replayed the down, which resulted in another score.

"We line up in a bunch set for a touchdown pass and we don't have a guy on the line of scrimmage," Muschamp said.

"That's a play we've repped 100 times — we need to rep it 105."

Now at 79 flags on the year, UF ranks No. 109 nationally and last in the SEC in penalties per game. Florida's coaching staff met Sunday to discuss new ways to solve the penalty problem, but Muschamp said his players must also deal with the issue themselves.

"The players need to understand that they need to take some responsibility, that's what I told them in the locker room," Muschamp said. "We gotta get over this. We gotta get over jumping offsides on third-and-10. Eventually, as a player you have to look in the mirror and realize that you need to play smarter than that."

Zach Abolverdi is a Gainesville Sun correspondent.

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