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This Tennessee RB got a penalty for gator-chomping because the NCAA are cops

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The right call? Yeah. Dumb? Also yeah.

Tennessee running back John Kelly ran home a 34-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter at Florida on Saturday, cutting a Volunteer deficit to 13-10.

Kelly followed the score up with this well-executed Gator chomp:

Kelly was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct, which means Tennessee had to kick off from its own 20-yard line instead of the 35 afterward. And while that’s super dumb to anyone who thinks football should just be fun, it’s probably right by the rulebook, which says unsportsmanlike conduct includes:

Any delayed, excessive, prolonged or choreographed act by which a player (or players) attempts to focus attention upon himself (or themselves).

That’s a penalty, then. Sure.

In a three-point game in the fourth quarter, is that potentially pretty harmful? Oh, yeah. Absolutely. The Gators ran the kickoff back across midfield and then scored their first offensive touchdown of the whole season, so it was pretty bad for Tennessee.

But was it worth it? I mean, in a longer-term way, sure. The chances Tennessee loses because of those 15 yards are rather remote, but Kelly’s going to have a GIF to look back on with glee for the rest of his life. What really constitutes winning, when you think about it in the grand scheme of a man’s life?