KITCHENER/WATERLOO TOUCH FOOTBALL LEAGUE
PROGRESSIVE PASS PLAYING RULES
UPDATED AS OF JUNE 1, 2002

1.

PLAYERS / TEAMS

1.1

No players who play for a pro, semi-pro or university football team may play in this league. If you play for any of the above mentioned organizations in the current season, you are ineligible.

1.2

A maximum of seven (7) players shall be on each team on the playing field at one time. A team may play with 6 players on the field.

1.3

A team may substitute as they wish while the ball is not in play.

1.4

A player must be 18 years of age or older, or must become 18 years of age at some date in the calendar year of the season in which they play.

1.5

The best team from a Division will move up to the next Division. "Best" may either be the championship team, or the strongest team during the season viewed in its entirety, depending on injuries or absences during playoffs ("sandbagging" is frowned upon). The last placed team in each Division will move down to the next lowest Division.

(i)

Exception: a team may be required to stay in their respective Division, or a particular team may be required to be placed into a particular Division, if a particular team is needed to balance out a Division.

(ii)

A team that changes its name but has 4 returning players will be considered the same team.

(iii)

Because there is no next Division higher than the A Division, the A Division Convenor has discretion to skew the A Division season so that the weaker A teams (who are still too good to remain in division B) can play each other more often than they play the stronger A teams.

(iv)

There may also be some inter-divisional play.

2.

APPAREL

2.1

Players should wear football cleats. The sole and cleats must be completely moulded (not two- or multiple-piece). Soles causing potential injury are not permitted: there shall be no screw-in cleats, no spikes, and no steel cleats.

2.2

Players must wear their proper team sweater or another of similar colour. Sweaters must be numbered on at least the back or the front (numbers on both front and back are preferred). Where teams of similar colour play each other, then the home team may request that the visiting team does not wear their sweaters to avoid confusion.

3.

TIME OF GAMES / NUMBER OF PLAYERS

3.1

All regular games will be scheduled for Saturdays at 10:00 a.m. Games should be under way by 10:05 a.m.
Captains: Synchronize your watches to avoid arguments!!!

3.2

If a captain thinks he may not have 6 or more players for a given Saturday, he is to call the other team a few days ahead (preferably a week ahead) of the Saturday in order to give a fair opportunity for rescheduling. However, the decision on whether or not to reschedule is with the non-defaulting team.

3.3 (a)

If, by 10:15 a.m., one team has 5 or less players, the game may be called by the non-offending team as a default and the non-offending team records a score of
25-0.

(b)

However, the captains, by mutual consent, can further delay the start of the game pending the arrival of additional players; or they can agree to play a game whose scores will count provided that the non-offending team plays no more than the number of players that the defaulting team has, plus one.

(c)

Of course, the team with 6 or more players can take the default at 25-0 and offer to just scrimmage together with the defaulting team.

3.4

If both teams have 5 or less players, the captains can reschedule or play a game whose scores will count provided that each team must then field the same number of players on the field (and failing either of the above then the score will count simply as 0-0).

3.5

Two (2) defaults without prior notice shall result in the suspension of the offending team for the remainder of the season; all previous points deleted.

3.6

Each game shall have one and one-half hours of playing time divided into two 45 minute halves, with a 10 minute intermission between halves.

3.7

The details for keeping time is as follows: in any game, once it is realized that there is less than 3 minutes remaining (ie at 42 minutes), that half shall be concluded by 8 plays- the home team calls 8 plays at the next full set of downs. A kickoff (within the 8 plays) counts as one play, but converts are excluded. (the following applies once the game is into the final 8 plays: if team X gets an extra down due to an infraction of team Y but team Y intercepts, then team Y does not get the benefit of the extra down)

3.8

All games shall be played, weather and field conditions permitting. (If there is a hurricane or tornado, the game may be cancelled (0-0) or rescheduled.)

4.

FIELD OF PLAY

4.1

Games shall be played on fields which are as close as possible to regulation size.

4.2

If the field is not regulation size, or not clearly marked, the captains shall agree on boundaries, etc., before the start of the game.

4.3

The line of scrimmage cannot be within the offensive team's 1 yard line and the defensive team's 5 yard line.

4.4

Players are not allowed to change direction by using the goal posts (as a pick or in any other manner).

4.5

Sideline boundary: A player must have at least one foot touching the field of play (ie: not touching the sideline or over the sideline) for a catch to be legal.

5.

BALL

5.1

An official CFL or NFL size football must be provided by each team.

5.2

Sometimes a team may wish to use one ball for receiving kicks and a different ball for their offensive plays (wet weather, relatively new playing ball, etc).
THE RULE IS: The ball that a team requests be kicked to them cannot be softer than the ball that the receiving team will use for their offensive plays. ie you cannot ask that a mush ball be kicked to you and then bring in a harder ball for your plays.

The onus is on the kicking team captain to decide (before the kick) on the soft/hard appropriateness of the kicking ball as compared to the offensive play ball - therefore it is suggested that prior to beginning the game (or during the game if suspicions arise) both team captains should show each other the footballs they intend to use for receiving kicks and for offensive plays.

6.

COMMENCEMENT OF PLAY & KICKOFFS

6.1

At the beginning of the game to start the first half, the home team will choose either:
"BALL - kick or receive" - OR -
"FIELD -choose which end of the field they want".
The visiting team then makes the alternative choice. For example: if the home team chose the "Field" decision, then the visiting team makes the "Ball" decision. The team that kicked to open the first half then receives to open the second half, and the teams switch ends in the second half.

6.2

The start of each half and the plays after a touchdown plus convert, shall be commenced by a kick from the kicking team's 45 yard line (must be a placekick). The receiving team cannot line up closer than 10 yards. See also Rule 7.3.

6.3

If the kick goes out of bounds, the receiving team will have a choice between taking the ball where it went out of bounds plus 1 extra down, or have the opposing team re-kick 10 yards farther back.

6.4

If the kick does not travel at least 10 yards in the air, there shall be a re-kick 5 yards farther back.

6.5

Offensive team huddles are compulsory prior to snapping ball (all players for the next play must be in the huddle). Huddles must be of a reasonable, traditional football nature. Those teams that take too long in the huddle to run time off the clock will be penalized 10 yards. The defensive team shall give a warning first. Specifics: The team playing offence shall snap the ball within 75 seconds ( 1 minute & 15 seconds) from the time the previous play went dead. That means the offence must get back to a huddle, have their huddle, and snap within 75 seconds. If the defence wishes to enforce this rule, they must give a warning to the offence at the 60 second mark stating: "15 seconds to snap". Even then, the first infraction shall be a warning.

6.6

All snaps must be shotgun style and received no closer than 5 yards back from the centre.

6.7

The last person to shout the "cadence" must receive the snap, and if no cadence is called, then the QB must receive the snap.

7.

RECEIVING / PICKING UP THE BALL

7.1

A player may return a kick from anywhere in his end-zone and from the point where it was received on the playing field, and this kick may be recovered and played only by the receiving team.

7.2

When a team receives the ball from the other team by way of a punt or kickoff, they may not allow the ball to roll dead. If the ball rolls dead, play commences from that point. See Rule 9.5 re end zone.

7.3

If a player touches or drops the ball in attempting to field a punt or kickoff, the ball shall be dead at the point of touching the ball or dropping the ball and the receiving team shall take first down from that point.

7.4

Ball downed by kicking/punting team -receiving team shall have the option of taking the ball at the point of it having been downed plus an extra down, or making the opposing team re-punt or otherwise take their down over again or re-kick.

7.5

FIVE YARD RULE (with clarification): If the receiving team is not given 5 yards on a punt or kick, the penalty will be an extra down; except that where the player receiving the punt or kick takes one or more steps or sets to pass the ball or throws the ball, then the receiving team must take that play and has forfeited the right to call "not sufficient yards". (The receiving team cannot "try a play to see if it works" and then call "not enough yards" when the play does not work.) In other words, somebody in the reasonable vicinity of the catch must immediately call not sufficient yards AND the player catching the punt or kick may not take one or more steps or set to pass or throw.

8.

ADVANCING THE BALL

8.1

A team takes possession of the ball when they received it from the opposing team by means of:

a) a kick or punt         b) interceptions         c) through loss of downs

8.2

A team may advance the ball by running with it or by passing it. A pass may be thrown at any time from anywhere with no restrictions to the number of passes thrown on any one down.

8.3 (a)

A team shall have 4 downs to advance the ball. A team shall scrimmage the ball from the point where its player was touched, or at the point where it was ruled dead or from the point it was thrown incomplete. The line of scrimmage for the defensive team must be 5 yards from the offensive line of scrimmage. There is no blocking, picking or interference permitted by the offensive team.

(b)

The quarterback rusher must be given a clear path to the quarterback (see also Rule 11.5 re penalties against rusher).

8.4

If a team fails to score a touchdown after 4 downs and did not punt, the defensive team will take possession of the ball where the offensive team was stopped.

8.5

Defensive team shall spot the ball.

9.

SCORING (a touchdown, a rouge, a convert (l or 2 point), or a safety touch)

9.1

A touchdown is worth 6 points; and may be scored by advancing the ball across the opposing team's goal line, by run or pass.

9.2

The offensive player has to have BOTH his feet on or over the goal line to score a touchdown. In other words, the position of the ball is not to be debated; the deciding factor is whether both feet were either on or over the goal line. A foot touching the goal line is deemed to be over the goal line.

9.3

A rouge is worth 1 point and is scored when a team receives the ball behind it's own goal line and fails to advance it beyond the same goal line. After a rouge, the ball will be scrimmaged from the 25 yard line.

9.4

If the ball is punted or kicked through the end zone (or into the end zone and out of bounds), 1 point will be awarded to the kicking team. The ball does not have to touch the end zone before it goes through to count as 1 point.

9.5

If the ball rolls dead in the end zone, 1 point is awarded to the kicking team. The ball is then scrimmaged by the receiving team on the 25 yard line.

9.6

A convert is worth 1 point when scrimmaging from the 10 yard line, or 2 points when scrimmaging from the 20 yard line. Should a convert attempt be intercepted, the ball may be run back by the defence for 1 point or 2 points as the case may be.

9.7

A safety touch is worth 2 points and is scored when the offensive team is touched in their own end zone, or if an incomplete pass is thrown from the end zone. That offensive team then kicks the ball to the other team from their own 35 yard line.

10.

TOUCHES (see also Rule 17.3 re rough touches)

10.1

A team shall stop the advance of the opposing team by having one of their players touch with either of his hands the player of the opposing team who has the ball.

10.2

A defensive team may not block a punt, but, if a punter is touched before punting the ball or if he drops the ball while attempting to punt, the ball will be ruled dead at the point where he was touched or from the point where he dropped it.

10.3

It is suggested that in all cases of a "touch" and certainly in apparently close cases, the defensive player shout "TOUCH!" as soon as contact is made. It is considered unsportsmanlike to call a "Touch" in dubious cases after the ball carrier has proceeded downfield following a "supposed" contact. Defensive players should be sure of the Touch before calling it. Of course, without referees, there has to be a clear cut ruling and it is: in all cases of calling Touch, the defensive player is deemed right. (Phantom tags are reserved for total losers and should be avoided at all times -one or two dubious touches will occur from time to time in a game -however, a player or team who gains a reputation of calling several dubious touches in games will be admonished.)

11.

PENALTIES & INFRACTIONS

11.1

The general penalties are
(unless otherwise indicated below for specific infractions):
1st Offence:  WARNING
2nd and all further Offences: DEAD BALL, and LOSS OF DOWN

11.2

Offsides: (either team)      5 Yards
(However, a team may not in the 5 minutes prior to the final 8 plays of a half suddenly begin calling an inordinate number of dubious offsides against the other team with the deemed purpose of trying to kill the clock.)

11.3

Defensive Pass Interference:    the non-offending team has the option of taking the ball from the point of infraction or taking their down over, plus 1.

Defensive Pass Interference in the end zone:    Down over plus 1 more down - from the 5 yard line, or from the 5 or 10 yard line as applicable if the attempt had been for a convert.

11.4

Offensive Pass Interference: Dead ball, and loss of 1 down. If the interference occurs on the offensive team's last down, the penalty will be dead ball, defence takes over at the point the ball was last thrown, plus 10 yards or half the distance to the goal line.

11.5

Picks -Regarding picks on defensive rusher:
The defensive rusher must be given a clear line to the ball carrier at the snap of the ball. If the play is a designed rollout, the offensive Centre can remain in absolute stationary position without fear of being called for a pick (provided the offensive Centre does not move even an inch, then the Centre's stationary position after the snap is deemed not to be interference with the rusher).

11.6

Open field Picks:
If players A & B from the same team are moving down the field together and player B has his eyes on the player A carrying the ball & player B is waiting for a pass over, then player B cannot be called for a pick if he is run into by (or collides into) the defence. However, if the player B intentionally positions himself between a defensive player and the ball carrier, a pick may be called providing the defensive player had a reasonable chance at a touch.

11.7

Personal infractions: In a ruling on all personal infractions, (example: interference, pick) the onus is on the offended player (not his teammates) to call the infraction.

Non-personal infractions: example: off-sides, dead ball, out of bounds and other non-personal infractions can be called by the non-offended teammates in the vicinity of the infraction.

11.8

In all cases of a dispute over infractions & penalties, the decision of the non-offending side shall prevail.

11.9

See also Rule 17 re fighting, and rough touches.

12.

GIVING UP THE BALL (DOWNS, PUNTING, INTERCEPTION)

12.1

A team may give up the ball on any down by means of a kick/punt from behind their line of scrimmage and they need NOT inform the opposing team.

12.1

A player may not kick or punt the ball after he has crossed the line of scrimmage, or already made an attempt to run or throw the ball regardless of the line of scrimmage. Nor may a player fake a punt and then run or pass the ball.

12.2

A player may not kick or punt the ball after he has crossed the line of scrimmage, or already made an attempt to run or throw the ball regardless of the line of scrimmage. Nor may a player fake a punt and then run or pass the ball.

12.3

Ball punted out of bounds - receiving team shall take the ball at the point of the out of bounds mark plus an extra down. (See Rule 6.3 re ball kicked out of bounds.)

12.4

INTERCEPTED PASS      If a defending player is touched after intercepting a pass in his own end-zone and before he runs out over his goal line, the ball shall be put into play at the intercepting team's twenty (20) yard line. No points shall be awarded to the opposing team. The same rule will apply if the intercepting team throws an incomplete pass from behind their own goal line. If it appears that both the offensive and defensive players have caught the ball, the catch will be awarded to the offensive player.

12.4

The following applies once the game is into the final 8 plays: if team X gets an extra down due to an infraction of team Y but team Y intercepts, then team Y does not get the benefit of the extra down.

13.

DEAD BALL RULE

13.1

If a player of the offensive team drops the ball or throws an incomplete pass, the ball will be ruled dead from the point where he dropped it or from where the pass was thrown.

13.2

If, when the ball is snapped, it touches the ground before being caught, or before the quarterback has control of the ball, then the ball shall be ruled dead and a loss of down shall occur at the original line of scrimmage.

13.3

If the ball touches a player's shoe (other than when that player is kicking or punting of course) then the play is dead at the time the ball touches the shoe; even if the ball does not touch the ground.

13.4

A defensive team may not block a punt, but, if a punter is touched before punting the ball or if he drops the ball while attempting to punt, the ball will be ruled dead at the point where he was touched or from the point where he dropped it.

13.5

If a player touches or drops the ball in attempting to field a punt or kickoff, the ball shall be dead at the point of touching the ball or dropping the ball and the receiving team shall take first down from that point.

14.

TIES

There is no overtime for regular season games.
When two or more teams are tied in the League standing at the end of the season, the tie shall be resolved by:

(a)

the team that defaulted less often gains the advantage

(b)

won-loss record between the two (or more) teams during the season

(c)

points for and against differential as between those teams

15.

REPORTS

The Captain of the winning team shall ensure that a report of the final score is e-mailed or telephoned as instructed by NOON, SUNDAY at the latest so that there is some time on the weekend to prepare the score sheet for the web and newspaper. To be safe, both teams shall call in case of a tie. If the score is not received by the deadline, the convenor, at his discretion, may rule the game void and no points will be awarded. This is to avoid the hassles that ensue when winning teams do not give scores on a timely basis.

16.

OTHER CASES

Where any situation arises which may not be covered by the above rules, the Official Canadian Football Rules will apply as far as possible.

17.

FIGHTING & ROUGH PLAY ie DO NOT I!!!!!

17.1

This league is supposed to be a source of fun competition. However, tempers will get frayed from time to time. If you decide to vent your frustration by "fighting" (taking a poke or hitting or spitting or throwing anything at another player or at his belongings), you will be suspended for the remainder of the season or 11 games, whichever is longer -such behaviour during the playoffs is a huge mistake as you will be ejected from the league.

17.2

In cases of two players fighting, the player who started the physical fighting shall be held accountable; i.e: if someone hits you, you should have the right to defend yourself and you will not be held accountable.

17.3

Rough Play: Touches should be of a fairly easy-going nature, not a massive shove. If a player continually delivers shots during his touches, he will be suspended for 2 games.

****************************************************************************************
Have a great season.
The Executive Committee: League President, League Treasurer
Division "A" Convenor & "B" Convenor & "C" Convenor



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