I’ve read a lot about OSU’s mistakes… particularly the characterization that those early personal fouls put them behind the eight ball. However, that first personal foul by the OSU kicker on UF’s Brandon James (on the kick-off return) was not a bad foul. The kicker is usually the last man to beat on a kick-off return. If the OSU kicker doesn’t bring James down by his face mask on that play… Brandon James is GONE… as in, he scores. James has had great returns all year, running with speed and strength… deceptively hard to bring down for his size. That kicker was not going to tackle Brandon James (a backup running back) without pulling on his facemask.
Giving the Gators the ball on your own 45 is better than giving up a touchdown. The Gators went on to score anyway… but if you ask me that particular personal foul was a non-factor.