Each SEC program has now played at least 3 games this season. Not all teams have played an equal amount of “quality opponents,” but there’s enough data to paint a legitimate picture in certain aspects of the game.

Such as penalties. We’re 1/4th of the way through the regular season and some teams have started well while others have failed miserably in that regard.

So, who’s done well at staying out of penalty trouble and who has not? Earlier in the preseason we ran a piece going over exactly that across the past 5 seasons, so let’s take a relook at the totals and compare for the start of 2023.

Here’s the SEC ranked by penalty yards per game through Week 3:

  1. Florida: 32 yards per game
  2. LSU: 33.3 yards per game
  3. Vanderbilt: 41 yards per game (4 games)
  4. Georgia: 42.3 yards per game
  5. Auburn: 47 yards per game
  6. Alabama: 48 yards per game
  7. Mississippi State: 48.7 yards per game
  8. Missouri: 48.7 yards per game
  9. Ole Miss: 52 yards per game
  10. Kentucky: 55.3 yards per game
  11. South Carolina: 56 yards per game
  12. Texas A&M: 64.3 yards per game
  13. Tennessee: 67.3 yards per game
  14. Arkansas: 81.7 yards per game

Arkansas stands alone at the bottom, averaging an incredible 8.3 penalties per game for 81.7 yards. Tennessee, South Carolina and Texas A&M have also been penalized an average of at least 8 times per game.

Here’s a look at penalty flags thrown per game per team on average so far:

  1. LSU: 3.3
  2. Vanderbilt: 4.5
  3. Georgia: 4.7
  4. Mississippi State: 4.7
  5. Auburn: 5.3
  6. Alabama: 5.7
  7. Ole Miss: 5.7
  8. Florida: 6
  9. Missouri: 6
  10. Kentucky: 7.3
  11. Texas A&M: 8
  12. Tennessee: 8
  13. South Carolina: 8.3
  14. Arkansas: 8.3

Both these rankings tell similar stories. The 4 previously mentioned (USC, TAMU, UT and Ark) are among the worst in the conference while LSU, Vanderbilt, Georgia, Auburn and Florida roughly make up the top 5.

Does anything from this list surprise you?