Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Dawgs' Reputation for Undisciplined Play Home to Roost?

It's no secret that, particularly over the past few years, Georgia has been one of the most penalized teams in the country. Although I don't suspect officiating crews actually concern themselves with exactly where Georgia ranks consistently, there's little doubt that they are aware of Georgia's penchant for committing the odd late hit, or excessive celebration.

I'm not going to sit here and complain that the "celebration" penalty against LSU cost Georgia the game, nor will I say that the "illegal hit" by Reshad Jones against OSU cost them that game. I can tell you that what those penalties did do was seal Georgia's fate in those games. Neither was a legitimate penalty.

Neither am I going to tell you that there is a conspiracy against Georgia. There's not. Officials screw up sometimes because they're still human beings. That doesn't make the atrocious penalties called against the Bulldogs any easier to stomach for fans, but c'est la vie.

Going back a few years, Georgia has had many a text-book personal foul or celebration (see the GA-FL game in '07) penalty called against them. Add that to the over-abundance of in-game penalties such as offsides, false starts, etc, and the Bulldogs had become known as a team that did not follow the rules, so to speak. Because the refs are human beings, no matter how hard they might try to take each game as it comes regardless of who's playing, they're going to drop hankie on Georgia any time they're on the fence about a call. It's a predisposition borne of Georgia's recent past.

Penalties breed penalties, and however unfair it may be, Georgia made its own bed. It's imperative that the Dawgs play a cleaner brand of football starting right now, not just for the disadvantages it causes directly, but also to rid themselves of the stigma with which they seem to have been branded.


  1. Dave, That is absurd. We have not had any more than our fair share of legitimate celebration or late hit penalties. While we have had more tyhan our fair share of the in-game penalties as you call them. The only way that could effect the other is if an Official and or his boss is prejudice in the first place. Human nature doesn't make you see things that aren't there. I have seen many young teams that commit a ton of infractions one year, and then a more experienced team not have the officials call penalties that aren't there due to the previous year.