“I messed up.”

Way back when, I used to post about Matt Hinton’s data that penalties had relatively little to do with a team’s wins and losses, so on one level, that Georgia is among the worst in the conference when it comes to penalties doesn’t really bother me much.

Heading into its sixth game of the year, Georgia has 37 penalties — tied for third-worst mark in the conference. The Bulldogs average 7.4 penalties per game, which is tied for second worst in the SEC.

When you decided to emphasize havoc, your defense is going to be more aggressive and that’s probably going to result in more penalties.  It’s a transactional cost, to some extent, and it’s one you can live with if the overall scheme pays off with better defense.

But I also get Kirby’s point about playing with discipline.

“Some of [the penalties] were undisciplined and you can’t do them,” Smart said. “They probably cost us a drive and it cost us a touchdown … Those are critical, critical errors. That hasn’t been a trait that we’ve had, is undisciplined penalties, and we’ve got to prevent those.’’

David Marshall’s personal foul in the Tennessee game wasn’t the result of aggressively pursuing havoc.  It was simply knuckleheaded.

The trick is getting the players to know the difference between the two and play accordingly.

8 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

8 responses to ““I messed up.”

  1. While penalties may not necessarily be correlated with wins and losses, they certainly are hidden yardage that affect the results of drives. If you play field position to force a team to go 80 yards to score a TD and commit 2 15-yard penalties, that’s giving the offense the equivalent of 3 first downs of field position. I’m much more likely to score a TD only having to move the ball 50 yards rather than 80.

    Disciplined aggression should keep that from happening.

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  2. Silver Creek Dawg

    Not sure there’s a way to avoid inexplicable referee calls like the PF against Landers.

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    • Got Cowdog

      There should be a way to convince your players that more than incidental contact once the play is out of bounds is a bad idea. UGA has enough trouble with the escaped convicts with whistles without giving them ammo.

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    • Biggus Rickus

      The official actually got the call half right. Landers did get his hand in the corner’s face when he tried to thump him in the chest. The problem with it was the ref not calling the personal foul on the corner for the retaliatory punch that he very obviously saw.

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    • Got Cowdog

      My bad. I thought you were referring to the PI call that negated the touchdown. The one you and Biggus are referring to was total bullshit. There needs to be some accountability on the referees.

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  3. 69Dawg

    The stadium steps at 5AM used to stress the need for corrective action on bonehead plays.

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  4. jt10mc (the other one)

    Here’s an idea…how about the refs actually call the correct team for a penalty…says Matt Landers…

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  5. Macallanlover

    The impact of penalties on wins and losses is relative to when they occur. There are some 5 yard penalties that hurt much more than certain 15 yard penalties. Depends on where on the field they occur, when in the game they occur, and how much actual yardage they represent (some 5 & 10 yard penalties can cost you 20-75 actual yards…like the call that negated Holyfield’s kickoff return at ND.) Happens all the time, bad alignment on a FG that was made, then missing the slightly longer attempt. Etc., etc. Lot of hidden yardage and damage done by various penalties. You only have to go back to Simmons’ non-penalty situation against Bama a couple of years ago…that horribly blown call cost us a MNC. Hurts a lot more than just 5 yards.

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