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Rules - Flag Football

INTRAMURAL 7v7 & 8v8-MIXED-REC FLAG FOOTBALL RULES AND REGULATIONS

The game will be governed by the most current edition of the NIRSA Flag & Touch Football Rules Manual, with the following modifications.

TEAM

Each team must have at least five players (six for Mixed-Rec, max 4 men) on the playing field at the designated time of the game and must maintain a minimum five players (six for Mixed-Rec.) on the field throughout the game. A team may temporarily go under the minimum of players (such as due to injury) if it is deemed that they still have an opportunity to win the game.

PERIODS, TIME FACTORS, SUBSTITUTIONS

The Start of the game

Each half shall start with a snap from the 14 yard line. Before the start of the game the referee shall toss a coin in the presence of the opposing field captains, after first designating which captain shall call the coin.

The captain winning the toss shall have the options for the first half. The options for each the half shall be:

  1. To choose whether his/her team will be on offense first or defense first.
  2. To choose the goal his/her team will defend.
  3. The captain, not having the first choice of options for a half, shall exercise the remaining option.

Possession after a score and a try: After a team has scored a touchdown and attempted their try (extra point) the ball will be placed on the scored upon team’s 14 yard line.

Game Timing: All games will consist of (2) twenty-minute halves, with a three-minute halftime period. The clock will run continuously unless a team requests a time out for the first 18 minutes of each half. A team may have two time-outs per half–one minute in length. During the last two minutes of the half, the clock will stop as per NFHS/NCAA rules.

TIE GAME (playoffs)

Tie Breaker and Sudden Death: The tiebreaker will begin with an explanation of the rules and a coin toss. The winning team will choose either to go on offense first or to defend the goal. Unless moved by penalty, each team will start 1st and goal from the 20 yard line. The object will be to score a touchdown. A tiebreaker period consists of one series of downs by each team. If the first team that is awarded the ball scores, the opponent will still have a chance to match or exceed the score. Unless moved by penalty, they will start 1st and goal from the 20 yard line (In overtime, the goal line is always the line-to-gain, regardless of penalties). Try-for-points will be attempted and scored as during regulation. If the defense intercepts the ball and returns it for a touchdown, they win the game. If they do not return the interception for touchdown, the ball will be placed at the 20 yard line to begin their series of 4 downs. If the score is still tied after one series of downs, repeat as above until one team wins.

TIME OUTS & CONFERENCES

Charged Time-Outs: Each team is entitled to two charged time-outs during each half without penalty. Successive charged time-outs may be granted each time during a dead ball period. If the ball is dead and a team has not exhausted its charged time-outs, the referee shall allow a time-out and charge that team. Each time-out is one minute.

Injured Player and Blood Rule: An injured or apparently injured player, who is discovered by an official while the ball is dead and the clock is stopped, shall be replaced for at least one down unless the time-out or intermission has occurred. A player with an excessive amount of blood (determined by the officials) shall be considered an injured player and must sit out until they have secured a clean uniform and stopped bleeding. A player that suffers a head, spinal or neck injury, or loses consciousness must have written approval from an appropriate health care professional before they are permitted to participate in another game.

 

 

UNIFORMS, PLAYERS AND EQUIPMENT

All players must be dressed in the same or similar uniform.Teams are required to bring a WHITE and a dark shirt. (Navy blue, dark green or black.) 

Equipment: A valid Tulane ID card must be used to check out equipment. Each player must wear the flag belts provided by Campus Recreation. All Flag belts have three flags that are to be positioned one to each hip and one in the back. Shirts must be tucked in so that the flag can be easily seen and grabbed. If a sweatshirt is worn, it must be tucked in a manner in which it will not cover the flag belts. All hooded sweatshirts must be tucked in and remain tucked in.

No belt loops or pockets on any form of pants will be allowed. Players can not tape pockets, belt loops, numbers on shirts etc.

Metal cleats are illegal. Players may not participate in sandals, boots, dress shoes, or in bare feet. Players wearing illegal shoes will be disqualified.

*ABSOLUTELY NO JEWELRY WILL BE ALLOWED* (Medical Alert Bracelets must be secured with tape or a legal wrist band)

Footballs: Teams should provide their own official-size football (Note: Mixed-Rec teams may also use a youth, junior, or intermediate ball). The team in possession is always responsible for retrieving the football during play.

THE GAME

Field Dimensions: All games will be played on a 100-yard long x 40 yards wide field, with two, ten-yard end zones.

Blocking: All offensive screen blocking shall take place without contact. It is similar to a screen in basketball. The screen blocker shall have his/her hands and arms at his/her side or behind the back. Any use of arms, elbows, legs or body to initiate contact during an offensive player’s screen block is illegal. A player must be on his/her feet before, during, and after screen blocking. No charging into offensive blockers, the defense must make an effort to get around the offensive blocker. 

Punting: When punting the ball, a kicking team must announce its intentions to the officials before the ball is declared ready to play. After such an announcement, the kicking team can only change the decision by a time out (Either team) or by accepting any penalty. No one may move besides the kicker in the act of kicking until the ball is away. The center must snap the ball to the kicker who must be at least two yards behind the line of scrimmage. There shall be no quick kicks and no fake punts.

A punted ball that hits the ground may be advanced, but it must be fielded cleanly. The ball will be declared dead if the punting team downs the ball or if the receiver doesn’t field the ball cleanly (fumbles or muffs the punt, and the ball subsequently touches the ground).

Fumbles: Any fumble, lateral or forward pass that is intercepted or caught in the air may be advanced. Any time a loose ball touches the ground during a play from scrimmage, (excluding incomplete forward passes) the ball is automatically downed there. 

Delay of Game: The ball must be put in play with a legal snap within 25 seconds of the ready-for-play whistle. The player receiving the snap must be at least two yards behind the line of scrimmage. The ball must be snapped with a quick, continuous motion. If the ball is snapped before the Referee whistles the ball ready for play, it is considered delay of game.

Line-to-Gain: Each team will have a series of four downs to advance the ball beyond the zone lone-to-gain. Failure to do so in four downs results in loss of the ball to the opponent. The line to gain in any series shall be the zone line in advance of the ball, unless the distance has been lost due to penalty or loss of yardage. The placement of the ball will be determined by the location of the ball when the person is deflagged. Any part of the ball touching the line is considered over the line.

Motion: When the ball is snapped, only one offensive player may be in legal motion (parallel to or away from the line of scrimmage). 

False Start: Any action by the offense that simulates the start of the play, including jumping, flinching, or other movement, is illegal.

Stripping, hitting, or stealing the Ball: An opponent may not snatch, strip, or steal the ball from the ball carrier’s hand. There will be a ten-yard penalty awarded against a team that strips or attempts to strip a ball.

Neutral Zone: There will be a one yard separation between the offensive line of scrimmage (point of the ball) and the defensive line of scrimmage. There will be cones that designate both the offensive and defensive lines of scrimmage.

Encroachment: Neither team may penetrate the neutral zone prior to an imminent snap, punishable by a five-yard penalty. Note: There is neither a "get-back" rule nor a "free play" rule. The ball is dead immediately.

Passing/Receiving: All players are eligible to receive a pass. Only one forward pass is allowed per play. Any number of lateral/backward passes may be thrown at any time. Receivers must have one foot in bounds while in possession of the ball. A receiver who steps out of bounds and returns back to the playing field is ineligible to participate in that play until the ball is touched by another player.

Scoring:

Touchdown = 6 points

Safety = 2 points

Try option #1 = 1 point (from 3 yards)

Option #2 = 2 points (from 10 yards)

Option #3 = 3 points (from 20 yards)

A team is given one choice (one, two or three points) for their “try” attempt. The declared point value will remain the same even if penalties move the ball closer or farther from the goal. A team’s “try’ attempt choice can only be changed by taking a time out before the try is attempted. A change of possession during a try causes the play to become dead.

Securing the Flag belt: The defensive player must not tackle, block, trip or hold the ball carrier while attempting to deflag the ball carrier. If a player trips, holds, or uses any other illegal acts, a penalty of ten yards will be called. If flagrant, unnecessary roughness occurs, ejection may also result. Flag belt must be “clearly taken” from the ball carrier by a defensive player. If it falls off for any other reason, the play continues. It will become a one-hand touch on the offensive player without the flag. However, if a player from the opposing team causes the clip on the flag belt to break, the player is down. If a player is found wearing a belt that is tied, it will be an automatic ejection from a game. 

Flag Guarding: Runners shall not interfere with an opponent's attempt to pull the flag belt by using their hands, arms, body or the ball to cause contact between the runner and an opponent that denies the opponent the opportunity to pull or remove the flag belt. The ball carrier may not hurdle, jump or attempt to jump over another player. The player with the ball may intentionally dive for a line to gain or endzone, but may not initiate any contact with an opposing player with his or her dive. 

Down by contact: A runner or receiver is down if any part of their body touches the ground other than hands, feet or ball while held in possession.

Inadvertent Whistle: A live ball becomes dead when an official sounds the whistle, even if inadvertently. *A possessed (Player is holding the ball) ball blown dead inadvertently can be replayed totally or taken from the spot of the whistle *A loose ball (ball in the air) will be brought back to the previous spot and replayed.

MIXED-REC RULES SUMMARY

The Game: The game shall be played between 2 teams of 8 players, 4 men & 4 women.  Teams may have no more than 4 men on the field for any given down. 6 players are required to start a game and avoid a forfeit.  

The Ball: The regular, intermediate, youth or junior ball size football may be used.

Male Runner: An offensive team’s male runner cannot advance the ball through the line of scrimmage until that line of scrimmage has been "broken" by a pass for positive yards or by a female run for positive yards. Penalty: Illegal Male Advancement, 5 yards

Male to Male Completion: During the offensive team’s possession there may not be 2 consecutive legal forward pass completions from a male passer to a male receiver.  If a male passer completes a legal forward pass to a male, this "closes" play and the next legal forward pass completion must involve either a female passer or a female receiver for positive yards to render play "open" again.  The spot where the ball becomes dead must be beyond the offensive team’s line of  scrimmage.  There are no restrictions concerning a male passer completing legal forward passes to a female receiver, or female to female, or female to male.A female rush past across the line of scrimmage will not open the play.

 

Summary of Penalties

Loss of 5 yards
●      Failure to wear required equipment

●      Illegal forward pass, including intentional grounding (also loss of down).

●      Infraction of protected scrimmage kicks,

●      Snap receiver within 2 yards of line of scrimmage.

●      Illegal Substitution.

●      Illegal Procedure.

 

●      Delay of Game (Dead Ball Foul).

●      False Start (Dead Ball Foul).

●      Encroachment (Dead Ball Foul).

●      Illegal Snap (Dead Ball Foul).

●      Illegal Motion.

●      Illegal Shift.

 

 

 

Loss of 10 yards
●      Illegal Contact.

●      Kick catch interference.

●      Forward pass interference 

●      Illegally secured flag belt on touchdown (loss of down).

●      Unsportsmanlike Conduct 

●      Tackling. (Disqualification)

●      Spiking, kicking, throwing, not returning ball to the official.

●      Roughing the passer (automatic 1st down).

●      Stealing, striking, or attempting to steal the ball.

●      Flag Guarding.

●      Hurdling any player.

●      Illegal Kicking.

●      Illegal participation.