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Ashland Youth Football League Rules

The Ashland Youth Football Code

Coaching Ethics

Ashland Youth Football League Philosophy

Sportsmanship

Ashland Youth Football League Rules

ARTICLE 1- AGE OF PLAYERS
ARTICLE 2- DRAFTING
ARTICLE 3- GUARANTEE TO PLAYERS
ARTICLE 4- TRANSFER OF PLAYERS
ARTICLE 5- COACHES
ARTICLE 6- UNIFORMS
ARTICLE 7- INSURANCE
ARTICLE 8- LENGTH OF SEASON
ARTICLE 9- PRACTICE & EXHIBITION GAMES
ARTICLE 10- EQUIPMENT
ARTICLE 11- PLAYING & PRACTICE RESTRICTIONS
ARTICLE 12- PLAYER USAGE AND FOREITURE
ARTICLE 13- DIMENSIONS OF PLAYING FIELD
ARTICLE 14- BALL SPECIFICATIONS
ARTICLE 15- MANDATORY EQUIPMENT
ARTICLE 16- LENGH OF PERIODS/INTERMISSON
ARTICLE 17- INCLEMENT WEATHER
ARTICLE 18- REPLAYED GAMES
ARTICLE 19- PROBLEMS
ARTICLE 20- PLATOONING OF PLAYERS
ARTICLE 21- REPRIMANDS FOR COACHES
ARTICLE 22- GAME TIE BREAKER
ARTICLE 23- KICKING GAME
ARTICLE 24- OFFENSIVE RULES
ARTICLE 25- DEFENSIVE RULES
ARTICLE 26- FUMBLES
ARTICLE 27- FACEMASK PENALTY
ARTICLE 28- WEIGHT RESTRICTIONS
ARTICLE 29- MISCELLANEOUS

THE ASHLAND YOUTH FOOTBALL CODE -top-

Traditionally, football is the game of schools and colleges. As such, only the highest standards of sportsmanship and conduct are expected of players, coaches and others associated with the game. Football is and should be an aggressive, rugged, contact sport. However, there is not a place in the game for unfair tactics, unsportsman like conduct, or maneuvers deliberately designed to inflict injury. Through the years, children have played sandlot football without any supervision or adequate equipment, resulting in several injuries that could have been prevented if supervision and adequate equipment had been provided for them. The AYFL Board and the rules committee under their supervision had endeavored by rule and appropriate penalty to prohibit all forms of unnecessary roughness, unfair tactics, and unsportsman like conduct. But the rules alone cannot accomplish this end. Only the continued best efforts of coaches, players, officials, parents and all friends of the game can preserve these high standards with the public has the right to expect in America’s foremost collegiate sport.

COACHING ETHICS -top-

Deliberately teaching players to violate the rules is indefensible. The coaching of intentionally holding, beating the ball, illegally shifting, feigning injury, interference or illegal forward passing, such as the forward fumble, will break down rather than aid in the building of the character of your players. Teaching or condoning the intentional roughing of an opponent is even worse. Such instruction is not only unfair to your opponents but is demoralizing to the boys entrusted to your care. It has no place in the game, which is an essential part of an educational program for our children.

SPORTSMANSHIP AND RULES -top-

The football player who intentionally violates any rule is guilty of unfair play and unsportsman like conduct, and whether or not he escapes a penalty; he brings discredit to the good name of the game, which it is his duty to uphold.

All National Alliance rules, regulations, and interpretations with the Ohio High School rule modifications shall apply to the AYFL with the modifications to follow in this document.

THE AYFL FOOTBALL PHILOSOPHY -top-

The AYFL program is the training ground of the future junior and senior high football prospects. The purpose of the league is to develop a genuine interest in the game of football and to teach the fundamental football skills, techniques, and attitudes that are necessary to become a good football player. Although winning is important, it is more important that the players enjoy the game and that all are allowed to participate who are qualified and meet practice requirements. They should be taught the team concept of the game and learn to play within the rules, regulations and requirements of the National Alliance, the Ohio High School Athletic Association, the AYFL Constitution and their coaches.

ARTICLE 1 - AGE OF PLAYERS -top-

All players must be 10 years old by October 1st of the playing season. A player may not play if he is 13 years old by August 1st, or a seventh grader.

ARTICLE 2 - DRAFTING -top-

The trustees will hold a blind draw with the players grouped according to weight and age. All players’ siblings, and head coaches shall be automatically place on the team roster.

ARTICLE 3 - GUARANTEE TO PLAYERS -top-

Any player that is assigned to a team and meets the age requirements will be permitted to play with that team until he has been disqualified for undesirable conduct. No, player will be disqualified until final review by the trustees who will meet with the boy, his parents or guardian, and the coach. When a player is released he will not be permitted to play with another team.

Each player must play a minimum of 10 plays a game unless injured during game or if player is being disciplined. Violation of this rule will result in the suspension of the head coach for one game. A second violation will result in a suspension for the remainder of the season. It is the responsibility of the head coach to see that this rule is enforced.

ARTICLE 4 - TRANSFER OF PLAYERS -top-

No players will be permitted to transfer from one team to another without permission and agreement of coaches and trustees.

ARTICLE 5 - COACHES -top-

There will be a maximum of one head coach and three assistant coaches per team. Coaches will consist of non- parent volunteers. Parent volunteers will only be used as a last resort. If any coach resigns another coach will be appointed by the Board of Trustees.

• Coaches are expected to concentrate their efforts to the teaching of the fundamentals to all players.
• Coaches shall determine where a boy is to play. Their decisions are final, as long as they meet the league rules.
• Coaches shall discipline themselves and their teams. Foul language or insulting remarks to anyone connected with the league will not be tolerated. High School rules will apply to no smoking on the practice and playing field. Yelling at officials on the field will not be tolerated. The first offense will result in a 15-yard penalty. The second offense will result in ejection from the game and suspension from practice and the next ball game. If there is another occurrence during the season, the coach will be suspended for the remainder of the year.
• Coaches will be responsible for having a complete team roster submitted to the league prior to the first game; Name, weight, position, phone number, jersey number birth date, and address.
• The coaches will arrange scrimmages.
• Removal of coaches shall be made with the decision of the League Trustees. A coach may be removed for the following reasons:
1. Physical or mental abuse to a team player.
2. Being intoxicated at any game or practice.
3. Numerous violations of the league rules.
4. Failure to adhere to league policies & goals.
• If a coach is ejected from a game, he must immediately leave the field and the premises. He may not sit in the stands. The remaining members of the coaching staff will be warned that if the rules of conduct are not adhered to, the game will be forfeited and the offending team will be penalized with a loss.

• Spectators
1. Spectators should be encouraged to conduct themselves in a sportsmanlike manner.
2. The officials have the authority to order a spectator from the stands if deemed necessary and suspend play until the situation has been resolved.
3. Parents must stay away from the sidelines and remain in the stands when applicable.

ARTICLE 6 - UNIFORMS -top-

All uniforms will be furnished by the AYFL and shall remain the property of the association. Uniforms will be turned in to the coaches at the end of the season. No equipment will be issued to any player who has not filed all their registration forms signed by the proper party, or who have not paid their registration fee. No equipment may be used in this program unless it is the property of the League other than shoes, socks, and athletic supporter. Parents are responsible for the cost of equipment not returned and will be charged $200.00 for replacement uniform and/or player may be suspended from AYFL indefinitely.

ARTICLE 7 - INSURANCE -top-

Medical Insurance is strongly recommended.

ARTICLE 8 - LENGTH OF SEASON -top-

The Board of Trustees before start of each season shall determine the length of the season.

ARTICLE 9 - PRACTICE SESSIONS AND EXHIBITION GAMES -top-

By mandate of the Ashland Youth Football League: There will be no more than 6 hours of practice per week prior to the start of the first scheduled game. No one practice should exceed 2 hours. The head coach will be warned the first time his practice(s) exceed these limits. If he violates the rule again, he will be suspended for one game. The first two practices of any season shall be without contact or full equipment (helmets are permitted. *A late addition to the team, off the waiting list, etc. must practice at least twice without contact.
During the week of the first game and thereafter, practices with or without equipment will be limited to a maximum of 4 hours per player. It will be the coach’s discretion if he wishes to practice with or without equipment. When the schedule is established and a team has a bye week, they are allowed 6 hours practice that week per player. Penalty for violation of the above practice rules can be a suspension of the head coach for the remainder of the year. During the AYFL season, starting with the first practice and ending at the last scheduled football game, no team shall play more than two exhibition games.

ARTICLE 10 - EQUIPMENT -top-

Required equipment issued by AYFL Football shall include:
1. A NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) approved helmet and facemask.
2. Approved shoulder pads.
3. Approved hip, kidney, and tailbone pads.
4. Approved football pants with packets for knee and thigh pads.
5. An approved mouth guard and chin strap. The wearing of mouth guards and chinstraps properly fastened is mandatory. A player will be warned the first time, and the team will be penalized 10 yards for each additional violation.
Required equipment furnished by the participant shall include:
1. Shoes must be of the molded cleat or regular gym type shoes.
2. Athletic supporter – Athletic supporter is strongly recommended.
Inspection and Approval of Equipment
1. It is the responsibility of the head coach or his assistant coaches to inspect each participant’s equipment before all practices and games. NO EQUIPMENT – NO PARTICIPATION!
2. Each participant must wear mouthpieces at all practices and games.

ARTICLE 11 - PLAYING AND PRACTICING RESTRICTIONS -top-

In case of rain, games will most likely be played. If lightning is spotted, the official in charge and/or head coach will immediately suspend the game until he feels conditions are clear of any danger or until postponement is deemed necessary. No practices unless it is supervised by Coaches. No contact is allowed unless the players are fully equipped.

ARTICLE 12 - PLAYER USAGE AND FORFEITURE -top-

No team may borrow players from another team roster. In the event that a team does not have eleven players to start a game at a scheduled time, the opponent will win by forfeit.

ARTICLE 13 - DIMENSIONS OF THE PLAYING FIELD -top-

The dimensions of the playing field will be the same as the High School playing field unless deemed otherwise by the Board.

ARTICLE 14 - BALL SPECIFICATIONS -top-

The size of the ball will be intermediate 2/3 size and the type approved by the Board of Trustees.

ARTICLE 15 - MANDATORY EQUIPMENT -top-

All players must wear football pants with pads, helmet, shoulder pads, mouth protectors when practicing and in official league play. AYFL EQUIPMENT SHALL NOT BE USED UNLESS IT IS AN AUTHORIZED AYFL PRACTICE OR GAME.

ARTICLE 16 - LENGTH OF PERIODS AND INTERMISSION -top-

The clock running time for a game shall be 50 minutes with periods and intermissions, as indicated.
FIRST HALF
1st Quarter - 12 minutes running clock
Intermission for Changing Goals - 1 minute
2nd Quarter - 12 minutes running clock
HALF TIME - 10 minutes
SECOND HALF
3rd Quarter - 12 minutes running clock
Intermission for Changing Goals - 1 minute
4th Quarter - 12 minutes running clock

GAME CLOCK – Playing time will be kept by the best means available to the official. In no case except injury, time outs, and delay of game, or at the discretion of the official will the clock stop during the game.

TIME OUT – Two per half for each team, one minute with clock stopped. Unused 1st half time outs may not be utilized in the 2nd half.

FOURTH QUARTER – Last 2 minute’s clock can be stopped by incomplete pass, running ball out of bounds, or using a time out.

ARTICLE 17 - INCLEMENT WEATHER -top-

In case of inclement weather during a played game, the head official or board member shall be responsible for calling the game. The Board of Trustees will determine the rescheduling of the game.

ARTICLE 18 - REPLAYED GAMES -top-

All games will be played at a date set by the Board of Trustees.

ARTICLE 19 - PROBLEMS -top-

Any problems that arise should be reported thru proper channel; players to Coaches; Coaches to Trustees; Trustees to Board.

ARTICLE 20 - PLATOONING OF PLAYERS -top-

Platooning of players will be used as much as possible. The number of players less than 22 will be permitted to play both ways. Every player must be a starter sometime though out the season on defense or offense of teams with less than 22 players or less to reflect the philosophy of AYFL instructional Football.

Mandatory Play Rule – AYFL Football expects that all coaches do everything possible to play each player equal time.
• Exception – nonattendance at practices. It is under the discretion of the individual coaches on how to deal with players who are absent from weekly practices. The coach’s decision to start these players or not depends on the circumstances surrounding the reasons for missed practices. These players must still participate on game day. Any problems concerning this issue should be brought to AYFL Trustees.

ARTICLE 21 - REPRIMANDS FOR COACHES AND PLAYERS -top-

COACHES
1. Swearing
2. Undesirable sideline behavior
3. Radical objections to officials call
4. Teaching unsportsman like characteristics
5. Physical manhandling of a player or verbal abuse of same
6. No defacing of a team mascot or symbol
7. Interference with first aid
8. Any violation of practice rules and regulations
PLAYERS
1. Swearing
2. Radical objections to officials call
3. Undesirable sideline behavior
4. Physical manhandling of a player or verbal abuse of same
5. No defacing of a team mascot or symbol
6. Any violation of practice rules and regulations
Any confirmed violation of the above, will result in suspension or expulsion from the league as deemed by the Board.

ARTICLE 22 - GAME TIE BREAKERS -top-

In the event of a tie score at the end of regulation playing time, there will be a coin toss to determine choice of possession from the ten yard line. Each team will get a chance to score a touchdown or field goal. If both teams score equal amount of points next possession will go to the 20 yard line.

ARTICLE 23 - KICKING GAME -top-

• At the start of the game, there will be a coin toss. The winner of the toss will have the option to receive the ball, go on defense, or defer his choice to the second half. If you defer your choice to the second half, the opposing team will have the option to go on offense or defense.

• There will be no kickoffs. The ball will be put into play on the 35- yard line.

• Punting: Will be allowed with only two boys allowed to be deep, beyond the line of scrimmage. There will be no rushing. Punts must be announced. The ball will be considered live until downed by the receiving team. Punting team will not advance the line of scrimmage. If the kick is blocked the ball is down where it hits the ground. There are no fumbles or advancement on punts. THERE WILL BE NO RUN BACKS. All catches are assumed possession. If the ball is batted forward, it must be placed where it was first touched. Defensive men may all stand and jump in attempt to block the punt. The punter must be positioned at least three yards behind the line of scrimmage and between the tackles when he kicks the ball.

• Points after touchdowns will be one or two points. One point conversions will consist of a successful running or passing the ball in. A two point conversion will consist of a kick. All extra point kicks and field goals must be declared, and will not be rushed. If the ball hits the ground on a snap the ball is dead. Holder must field the snap cleanly. Once the ball is snapped the kicker has five seconds to field the ball. There will be not fake field goals. . A blocked field goal is a dead ball at the line of scrimmage.

• The ball must be put in play within 30seconds. Violation is a 5-yard, dead ball penalty.

• In the event of a safety, the defensive team will be awarded 2 points. They will also receive the ball at the 35-yard line and go on offense at the 35-yard line.

ARTICLE 24 - OFFENSIVE RULES -top-

a. The offensive line must use a balanced 7man line. Center, two tackles, two guards and two ends. Ends may be split and may stand
b. Tackle to tackle must not be more than fingertip to fingertip apart.
c. if the ends are not split, they must be in the down position. Tackle to tackle will be in the down position.
d. All ball handlers will be within the prescribed weight limits of 115 pounds.
e. The penalty for infractions of the above rules will be 5 yards from the initial line of scrimmage. This is a live ball foul.

ARTICLE 25 - DEFENSE RULES -top-

a. Minimum of a four man line, no lining up in the gaps.
b. Tackle to tackle must be in either a 3-point or a 4-point stance position and aligned directly opposite the offensive player.
c. The defensive unit must set alone with the offensive unit. The only exception to this will be to cover a man in motion.
d. The nose guard must set up directly over center and be in the down position.
e. The ends can be positioned anywhere outside the tackles and can be standing or in the down position.
f. The linebackers must be at least 1 ½ yards behind the rear of the defensive down lineman. Outside linebackers must be lined up outside the tight end position and cannot be stacked behind the defensive end.
g. The inside linebackers must be lined up over offensive guards or tackles unless needed to be outside the tight end position for coverage of extra offensive player. There will be no stacking the linebackers. If down lineman is over a guard, the linebacker must be over the tackle and vice versa.
h. Blitzing is permitted on 3rd down by one player only.
i. At no time are safeties to be stacked within 8 yards of line of scrimmage.
j. The defensive unit cannot shout or yell or clap their hands in order to disrupt the offensive cadence.
k. Jewelry will not be worn by any player.
l. The penalty for violation of the above rules will be 5 yards from the initial line of scrimmage.

ARTICLE 26 - FUMBLES -top-

There will be no advancing of a fumble by the offense or defense. The ball will be placed at the point of recovery.
1. If a fumble occurs between the center and the quarterback, the ball is considered dead as soon as it hits the ground. In this situation, the offense retains possession unless it was fourth down. The down is counted.
2. If a fumble occurs other than stated in rule one above, the ball is considered live and can be recovered by the offensive or defensive player. Either the offensive or defensive team cannot advance the ball.

ARTICLE 27 - FACEMASK PENALTIES AND UNSPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT -top-

Unsportsmanlike conduct by the players will not be tolerated. An unsportsmanlike conduct penalty will result in a 15-yard penalty. In addition to the 15-yard penalty, the player must be removed from the game for the next play. A second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty assessed to the same player in the same game even though it may be a different type of a violation will result in ejection from the game, and a one game suspension.
• Spearing, flagrant facemask (jerking, twisting etc.) fighting or punching an opponent will result in an immediate ejection and a 15-yard penalty. The one game suspension will also be in effect. Repeated conduct by a player in subsequent games will result in expulsion from the league.

ARTICLE 28 - WEIGHT RESTRICTIONS -top-

A. Ball handler – 115lb.
Anyone who handles the ball must be at ball handler weight; backs, ends, punt returnees, blocking backs. A tight end can be over ball handler weight but cannot handle the ball. Ball handlers will be weighted the day of first game and game four.

ARTICLE 29 - MISCELLANEOUS -top-

1. No stick-um on footballs o players’ hands.
2. Any penalty within the 20-yard line shall be limited to half the distance to the goal line, or the full penalty, whichever is less.
3. Two coaches for each team may be on the field of play during the game to assist with the calling of plays. They may not point out action to players once the teams get into a set position. Any communication between the coach and player after the play begins shall be cause for a first time offense and a 10-yard penalty for unsportsman-like conduct. A second offense in the same game shall result in the removal of the coach from the field. The coaches must be a minimum of 5 yards behind the deepest player when the teams are in a set position, or 10 yards from the line of scrimmage, whichever is more.
4. 18 point rule: If any team is up by 18 points coaches from both teams meet and discuss which player is coming out of the game. This will be considered a league time out.
• Which ever team is up by 18pts when that team takes possession they will start on the 20 yard line.
• The team up by 18 points will have four downs and then must punt the ball on fourth down.
• A team up by 18 points will not be aloud to run any reverse plays.