Florida Gators quarterback Anthony Richardson talks about traffic ticket: 'It was a mistake'
Florida redshirt sophomore quarterback Anthony Richardson discussed his April 4 speeding ticket for going 105 miles per hour in a 60 mile-per-hour zone in an interview with On3.com’s GatorsOnline, saying he regrets driving at such a high rate of speed.
“I know I’m not perfect, but it was a mistake,” Richardson told Gators Online. “I was speeding. My mom always tells me to drive safe, because I can not only hurt myself but I can hurt other people. I shouldn’t have done it, and I can definitely say I learned my lesson.”
The 19-year-old quarterback from Gainesville shined in Thursday night's Orange and Blue game. The Florida football program was aware of Richardson's citation, and on Friday, he addressed his teammates after the Tampa Bay Times broke the news that afternoon.
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Anthony Richardson: 'I'm gonna handle my business'
“I talked to the team (Friday),” Richardson said of the ticket, which he said was his first. “I let them know I’m gonna handle my business. I’m going to do everything right from this point forward. Doing something like that makes the team and the organization look bad and I don’t want that.”
Florida football head coach Billy Napier made clear Thursday night he expects his team’s starting quarterback to represent the program appropriately.
“When I think about a quarterback we think about a person who represents everything of what the organization is about,” Napier said Thursday. “Certainly at the highest level of football, the quarterback is the face of the organization. They set the greatest example with their work ethic, their attention to detail, their self-discipline, their approach. He’s a product of his work.”
As Napier spoke, Richardson sat near the front of the room, awaiting his turn to take the lectern yet appearing to listen attentively. Considering the headlines less than 24 hours later, Napier’s message looks poorly timed, at best. That wasn’t lost on Richardson.
“Following what Coach Napier said (Thursday) night, about me being the face of the team and the organization, it makes it seem like he’s lying or contradicting himself,” Richardson said to Gators Online. “I don’t want anyone to feel like Coach is lying to the team or about myself.”
Richardson told the outlet that seeing his name in the headlines for something negative made him feel bad, though he’s looking at it optimistically. The spotlight holds him to a high standard, and for that Richardson is grateful. He expressed a desire to learn from his mistake.
“When I saw the story I wasn’t mad because I was in the wrong. I did feel bad because that makes my name look bad. It makes my family’s name look bad,” Richardson said in the article. “Honestly, I’m glad I’ve got people watching me. It keeps me on the right track and keeps me focused. Sometimes I can make mistakes, but I’m going to try to fix that as time rolls forward.
“It only helps me become a better person and a better man. A better teammate. It just helps me overall.”