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Kentucky Minimizing Penalties

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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The decrease in penalties has helped the Wildcats make considerable improvement overall and be in position for a run in the SEC East.

Penalties don't normally stand out in the box score, but the hidden yardage that follow the yellow flags can have a big impact on games each weekend. Entering the stretch run of the college football season, Kentucky has been called for the fewest fouls in the SEC with just 35 penalties through eight games, merely 4.4 infractions per contest. That focus has helped the Wildcats get to 5-3, 4-2 in conference play.

Looking at Kentucky's eight outings, penalties have only been a major factor in one game; a 62-42 home win over New Mexico State, where the Wildcats were whistled eleven times for 87 yards. In Kentucky's six league outings, the Wildcats have been called for a total of just 18 penalties for only 157 yards. Kentucky was flagged merely twice per game in three of those contests.

What is interesting about the Wildcats avoiding such calls is that the standard set is a relatively-new one. Kentucky ranked second-to-last in the SEC in penalty yardage per game in 2015, 9th in 2014 and 11th in 2013. Simply put, the procedural execution has been more clean and crisp this fall.    

The decrease in penalties has helped the Wildcats make considerable improvement overall and be in position for a run in the SEC East over the final few games of the regular season. Kentucky will host Georgia Saturday night in Lexington; with a win, and a Florida loss to Arkansas, the Wildcats would be tied for first-place in the division.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports