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USA Volleyball

Rules of Play

The 2011-2013 Domestic Competition Regulations will be in effect throughout the 2012/2013 season and for the Northeastern Boys' Bid Tournament.  Participants, coaches and team representatives in the tournament are subject to and must obey ALL rules, regulations and policies of USA Volleyball herein or otherwise written.  Key rules are listed below:

  • Rally Score to 25, all games must be won by a margin of two (2) points.
  • Deciding games will be rally to 15 (of a 2 out of 3)
  • There will be a coin toss between games two and three to determine “side”, “serve” or “receive” in a 3-team pool where 3 sets to 25 are played and the final finish in the pool is determined by game percentage.
  • Twelve (12) substitutions and up to two (2) Liberos; the Libero player(s) must be identified prior to each match
  • The Roster may contain up to 15 players and no more than 5 staff members.
  • Net heights
    • Boys 15’s - 18’s: 2.43 m (7’-11 ⅝ )         
    • Boys 14’s: 2.24 m (7’-4 ⅛”)
  • Balls
    • The Molten “Pro Touch” V58 (red, white & blue) for the 14 – 16 divisions.
  • Each team must play within its own playing area and space.  However, the ball may be retrieved from beyond the free zone.   Rule USAV 9 states:
    • If obstructions or other safety concerns prohibit retrieval from beyond the free zone, the player retrieving a ball over a non-playing area must be in contact with the playing surface when contact with the ball is made.
    • Non-playing areas are defined as the: (1) walls, bleachers or other spectator seating areas; (2) team benches and any area behind the team benches; (3) area between the scorer’s table and the team benches; (4) any other area outlined in the pre-match conference by the first referee. [Rule 23.2.5].
    • If nets or dividers are separating courts, only the player attempting to play the ball may move the net or divider to play the ball
  • Libero Uniform Color   Rule USAV 19.2 states:
  1. The Libero player’s jersey must contrast in color with that of the predominant colors of the jerseys of the other team members.  Color combinations such as purple/black, dark green/black, navy/maroon, and white/light yellow are not distinctive enough to comply with the rules.
  2. A jacket or bib can only be worn by the re-designated Libero.  If a jacket or bib is worn by the re-designated Libero, the uniform number must still be visible.

Protests of the Rules of Play

Each Bid Tournament will have an on-site Protest Committee consisting of the head official, the Bid Tournament director and another qualified person.  No committee member can be coaching a team in the tournament.  The Protest Committee will rule on protests lodged by teams regarding officiating.  Protests of the playing rules during a set/match must be lodged in a formal manner prior to the next service.  

All rulings of this committee are final and not subject to appeal.

All protests will be settled at the time they are lodged.  No match will be allowed to proceed until the protest is settled.  Protests can ONLY be related to the rules of play.

Rule 20.1.2:  Participants must accept referees’ decisions with sportsmanlike conduct and without dispute. In the case of doubt, clarification may be requested through the game captain.

What is considered to be an offense that may be protested?  Judgment calls are NOT subject to protest.

Rule USAV 5.1.2.1 states in part:  Protests considered by the first referee include a 1) misinterpretation of a playing rule; 2) failure of the first referee to apply the correct rule to a given situation;  or 3) failure to charge the correct penalty-sanction for a given fault.  


Event Arbitrators

Event Arbitrators shall serve as the first level for hearing and resolving ethics and eligibility issues at a specific event.  Teams or individuals accused of committing violations of ethics and/or eligibility rules and regulations at qualifying and/or championship events shall meet with the Event Arbitrator(s). 

The authority for the Event Arbitrator to act begins with the arrival of a team and individual participants in the tournament city, or 48 hours prior to the first day of competition, whichever is earlier.  That authority shall continue through the duration of the Event through its conclusion. 

Decisions of the Event Arbitrator shall be conveyed immediately to the affected parties and may be appealed to the Event Ethics and Eligibility Appeals Committee appointed for each qualifying and/or championship event of the Corporation.


Event Ethics and Eligibility Appeals Committee

An Event Ethics and Eligibility Appeals Committee shall be formed for each qualifying and championship event sponsored by the Corporation.  Each committee shall be composed of three (3) members, one (1) of whom shall meet the definition of the Corporation as a domestic player who is at least 21 years of age.

Each committee shall act on appeals of ethics and eligibility decisions that occur during the conduct of the event.  The conduct of an event shall commence when an individual or a team arrives at the site of the event, or forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the first day of competition for that event, whichever is earlier.  That authority shall conclude with the departure of the individual and / or team from the city in which the event has been held. 

If the Committee is of the opinion the violation is of such a nature that requires further review or more serious discipline beyond the duration of a National Championship event, the USAV Executive Vice-President will send a report to the Commissioner of the offender's region.  That Commissioner will notify the USAV Corporate Ethics and Eligibility Committee outlining what action (if any) was taken as a result of the report.


Disciplinary Action

Any person listed on the Official Roster who is causing unfavorable situations either prior to, during, or after the tournament is subject to disciplinary action by the EVENT ARBITRATORS.  In particular, use of alcohol or drugs by players and/or officials will bring disciplinary action by the EVENT ARBITRATORS.

If a rostered team member is disqualified from a match, the disqualified person must report immediately to the championship desk (or site manager at an outlying site) until the issue is addressed by the event arbitrator or the team will default the match.

Anyone discovered in possession or consuming illegal substances will be automatically expelled from the championships.  There are no warnings for alcohol consumption by players or any other underage person whose names appear on the official roster.  There are no warnings for drug consumption by players or any person whose names appear on the official roster.  If discovery occurs after the conclusion of play for the player/team, the USAV Corporate Ethics and Eligibility Committee will be notified and the extension of sanctions may result in the limiting of future participation with USA Volleyball.  Any High Performance, Youth or Junior National Team member found in possession of alcohol or illegal substances may be removed from participation with the National program.


Provocative Behavior

Domestic teams are representative of USAV Member Organizations, and, as such, do not officially represent a governmental structure within the United States.

Therefore, the following standing policy will apply to all USA Volleyball events conducted by USA Volleyball:

"Comments and/or actions by an Event Participant, Team Member (roster personnel) or Spectator, which is deemed to be provocative, or provokes an opponent, other participant(s), team member(s), opponents team member(s) or spectator(s) will not be tolerated and shall be subject to disciplinary action by the Event Arbitrator."


Due Process, Protests and Appeals

USAV Bylaws, Article XIV, and the USAV Operating Code, Article X, govern protests, appeals, due process and ancillary procedures.  Both of these documents are published in the USA Volleyball Guidebook and posted on the USA Volleyball web site.  Protests, appeals and due process for this Event are specifically governed by these documents. Protests and appeals at this championship event are a simple one or two step process.