Penalties are one of the most frustrating aspects of college football. They can ruin drives and become momentum killers.

The SEC has some of the most penalized teams in the country every single year. Why? Sure, much of it has to do with the lack of discipline, while some of it has to do with the loud stadiums teams play in weekly.

Which SEC teams have been the most and least penalized over the last five years? Here’s a breakdown, from the least to the most:

RankTeamGPenPen. YdsPen/GYds/G
1Alabama673012,4444.4936.48
2Kentucky623132,6705.0543.06
3Miss State643312,7185.1742.47
4Tennessee623452,7355.5644.11
5Ole Miss633542,9055.6246.11
6Vanderbilt633632,8715.7645.57
7South Carolina663682,9795.5845.14
8Arkansas633913,0926.2149.08
9Auburn663963,4386.0052.09
10LSU664333,4236.5651.86
11Georgia674383,4536.5451.54
12Florida654903,8597.5459.37
Missouri*261391,0625.3540.85
Texas A&M*261611,4256.1954.81

*Reflects two years in the SEC

Takeaways:

  • Alabama has committed the least amount of penalties despite playing more games than every other team not named Georgia. The Tide is the only team to average under five penalties per game. Florida fans would tell you the Gators average that per offensive drive. How does Alabama continually commit the least amount of penalties?
  • Florida is holding true to their billing as continually the SEC’s most penalized team over the last five years. Florida wins national championships being the most penalized team, and they also finish 4-8 being one of the most penalized teams. What gives? Florida averages over 7.5 penalties per game, and they have committed 52 more penalties than the next closest team in Georgia. Florida finished 102nd, 114th and 89th committed in the country in the number of penalties under Muschamp’s teams.
  • Of the teams that won BCS championships since 2006, only Alabama is even in the top eight. Auburn, LSU and Florida are outside that range, committing six penalties or more per game. So, how big of an effect do penalties really have? Teams that have won championships not named Alabama haven’t had an issue with it.