BRITISH AMERICAN FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION FOOTBALL RULES AND INTERPRETATIONS 2019 EDITION

Original material BAFA 2019

Foreword

The rules are revised each year by IFAF to improve the sport's level of safety and quality of play, and to clarify the meaning and intent of rules where needed. The principles that govern all rule changes are that they must:

IFAF statutes require all member federations to play by IFAF rules, except in the following regards:

  1. national federations may adapt Rule 1 to meet local needs and circumstances, provided no adaption reduces the safety of the players or other participants; BAFA takes advantage of that to allow (for example) 90-yard fields and reduced end zones that are our solution to using rugby pitches and the like;
  2. competitions may adjust the rules according to (a) the age group of the participants and (b) the gender of the participants;
  3. competition authorities have the right to amend certain specific rules (listed on page 40);
  4. national federations may restrict the above so that the same regulations apply to all competitions under their jurisdiction.

These rules apply to all contests involving BAFA-affiliated teams and take effect from 1st March 2019. (Exception: Competitions that began before 1st March 2019 will continue to use 2018 rules until the end of their competition).

For brevity, male pronouns are used extensively in this book, but the rules are equally applicable to female and male participants.

BAFA has established a Rules Committee to discuss and decide future changes to this book. The Committee is also our liaison to IFAF on rules matters. You may make suggestions for changes at any time, but to be eligible for consideration for the following year they must be received by 1st September.

Jim Briggs (Editor) on behalf of the BAFA Rules Committee

Those who find it necessary to write to the editor for interpretations of rules or play situations will receive prompt replies if they number their questions and email them to rules@britishamericanfootball.org.

The editor would like to thank the following people who assisted in the production of this edition of the rulebook (GB except where stated):

Tom Blakeson Ellis Bowyer Adam Ceney Ian Davies Steve Egan James Ford-Bannister Roger Goodgroves Barbara Jacquin Chris Jarvis Lewis Lebolt (Sweden) Ollie Maskell Ali May Richard Moger Peter Parsons Shawn Sombati Leanne Spencer Paul Sutton Pete Thom Frank Thomson Paul Todd Simon Williams Mark Wilson Liam Wooton

Cover image by Kyle Hemsley Photography www.kylehemsley.co.uk

Table of Contents

Rules changes..........................................................4 Points of emphasis.....................................................7 The Football Code.....................................................11 BAFA Regulations......................................................14 1 Basic principles...................................................14 2 Registration.......................................................18 3 Code of conduct....................................................20 4 Regulations on organisations.......................................27 5 Game regulations...................................................29 6 Competition complaints and appeals.................................31 7 Procedures for regulatory cases....................................31 8 Procedures for appeals.............................................34 9 Grievance Procedure................................................35 Rules and Interpretations.............................................40 Rule 1 -- The Game, Field, Players and Equipment....................42 Rule 2 -- Definitions...............................................58 Rule 3 -- Periods, Time Factors and Substitutions...................77 Rule 4 -- Ball in Play, Dead Ball, Out of Bounds....................97 Rule 5 -- Series of Downs, Line to Gain............................103 Rule 6 -- Kicks....................................................107 Rule 7 -- Snapping and Passing the Ball............................122 Rule 8 -- Scoring..................................................139 Rule 9 -- Conduct of Players and Others Subject to the Rules.......148 Rule 10 -- Penalty Enforcement.....................................170 Rule 11 -- The Officials: Jurisdiction and Duties..................179 Rule 12 -- Video judge.............................................180 Rule 13 -- Standards for Game Management...........................184 Summary of penalties.................................................197 Officials' Signals...................................................208 Appendix A -- Guidelines for Game Officials for Serious On-Field Player Injuries211 Appendix B -- Guidelines for Game Officials and Game Management To Use Regarding Lightning212 Appendix C -- Concussions............................................214 Appendix D -- Field Diagrams.........................................216 Appendix E -- Equipment: Additional Details..........................222 BAFRA Terms and Conditions...........................................227 Index of Rules and Interpretations....................................27


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Editor: Jim Briggs, BAFA/BAFRA Rules Committee
rules@bafra.org