Official Football Rules of Eagle Bluff Conference

All football games sanctioned by the Youth Sports Foundation (YSF) adhere to the rules of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), except for the following rules. In the following table, the columns for “D1,” “D2,” and “D3,” indicate the division for which each rule applies. Where applicable, a penalty is indicated. These rules have a change log, as well as a revision history that can be requested from DIFL. See also Principles and Policies of Youth Sports Foundation (YSF).

IMPORTANT: Non-DIFL (non-Dubuque) teams in the Eagle Bluff Conference are encouraged to access the official Youth Sports Foundation 11-man Rules directly from YSF’s website. One exception to those rules is YSF’s Eagle Bluff Conference uses different quarter lengths according to YSF. In the Eagle Bluff Conference, D1 and D2 games use 10-minute quarters, and D3 games use 8-minute quarters with continuous clock that only stops for timeouts, injuries, and punts. This web page is needed to provide online access for D3 rules to Dubuque teams, as there is no program for grades 1-2 in YSF outside Eagle Bluff Conference.

Last updated on September 9, 2016.

SectionRuleD1D2D3Penalty
FieldThe playing field is a standard high school field, 120 yds in length (100 yds from end zone to end zone) and 53-1/3 yds in width.xx
The playing field is 100 yds in length (80 yds from end zone to end zone) and 53-1/3 yds in width.x
BallBall must be brown with white stripes.xxx
D1: Wilson TDJ (Junior) Composite (synthetic, not leather)x
D2: Wilson K2 (Pee Wee) Composite (synthetic, not leather)x
D3: Wilson K2 (Pee Wee) Composite (synthetic, not leather)x
Footballs made by other manufacturers may be used as long as the size and weight match the YSF-approved ball. (e.g. Nike, Under Armour)xxx
Each team shall supply their own ball(s) to be used by their offense.xxx
Officials shall inspect balls to insure compliance with YSF specifications, proper inflation, and good condition.xxx
Games10-minute quartersxxx
NFHS Rules apply for the clock keeper.xx
D3 games will have a running clock, and the clock will not stop, except for timeouts, injuries, and punts.x
Two time outs allotted per half, with no carryover.xxx
Half time is 3 to 5 minutes depending on the time available and discretion of host coordinator.xxx
25-second play clock is enforced between plays.xxx
25-second play clock is enforced between plays at the discretion of officials. For example, officials may warn teams and coaches to hurry up if they exceed the 25-second clock before resorting to penalties. Officials should treat both opponents in a game equally in this regard.x
Home team must supply three (3) individuals to manage sideline chains on the home side of the field and two (2) individuals to run the scoreboard.xxx
A game tied at the end of regulation playing time is considered a tie—no overtime is allotted.xxx
CoachesThe head coach is the only coach that can discuss game situations with officials.xxx
Game coaching staff are limited to one (1) USA-certified head coach and four (4) assistant coaches.xxx
Only one (1) USA-certified head coach is allowed on the field during a timeout.xxx
Two (2) coaches are allowed in the offensive or defensive huddle during the game. During plays, they may remain on the field at least 5 yards behind their rear-most player, and they may not give instruction during the play.xx
No coaches are allowed on the field or in the offensive or defensive huddle during a game, except during time-outs.x
Coaches and parents should do everything in their power to discourage cutting weight to play a position.xxx
Coaches ejected from a game or practice will be suspended and barred from attending the following week's practices and game, and may face further disciplinary action from the YSF.xxx
Anyone ejected twice from a practice or game is ejected from the YSF Football Program in all divisions. xxx
Weight LimitsPlayers have initial weigh-ins at registration.xxx
Players may be weighed in only shorts if they wish and may have a coach present.xxx
3-4 grade players who weigh 85-90 lbs. inclusive, and 5-6 grade player who weigh between 100-120 lbs.
inclusive, must be reweighed at jamboree or prior to first game of season.
xx
Maximum weight for quarterback, running back, wide receiver, or any player in the offensive backfield, is 70 lbs.x
Maximum weight for quarterback, running back, wide receiver, or any player in the offensive backfield, is 90 lbs.x
Maximum weight for quarterback, running back, wide receiver, or any player in the offensive backfield, is 112 lbs.x
Any player who exceeds the weight limit must have a red dot sticker on the front of his/her helmet.xxx
A tight end with a red dot (over weight limit) must line up within 1 yard of the tackle, cannot be a split end, and may only receive forward passes beyond the line of scrimmage.xxx
There shall be a master roster that includes every team in the Eagle Bluff Conference. The roster shall list every player's name, jersey number, and red dot status. This master roster will be made available online and used by teams to ensure that every player requiring a red dot on their helmet has one. In the event of an in-game dispute regarding red dot status, a complaint shall be filled with YSF and DIFL Board of Directors after the game. Coaches who do not insure that red dot stickers are placed on helmets as required will be subject to discipline at the discretion of YSF, including (but not limited to) suspension from games and/or practices. During games, officials will not mediate disputes regarding red dot status, and officials will rely on the red dots they see placed on helmets in order to officiate the game.xxx
ScoringAfter a safety, the ball will be placed on the 50-yard line.xxx
Field goals are allowed. Intent to kick a field goal must be declared in advance of the field goal play. Fake field goals are not allowed. Prior to a field goal attempt, the ball will be placed on the line of scrimmage, anywhere between the hash marks, and snapped from that spot. A flat kicking tee is allowed, but not required. The holder receives the snap and places the ball at least seven (7) yards behind the line of scrimmage for kicking. There is no defensive rush when a field goal is kicked. The only three (3) players allowed on the field are the center/snapper, holder, and kicker.xxx
Points after touchdown (PAT) are attempted after scoring a touchdown. Successful PAT attempts are awarded two (2) point for a kick; one (1) point for a run or pass. Intent to kick a PAT must be declared in advance of the play. Fake PAT kicks are not allowed. When kicking, the ball shall be placed on the opponent's 3-yard line and snapped from that spot. A flat kicking tee is allowed, but not required. The holder should receive the snap and place the ball at least seven (7) yards behind the line of scrimmage for kicking. There is no defensive rush when a field goal is kicked. The only three (3) players allowed on the field are the center/snapper, holder, and kicker.xx
No PATs may be attempted after scoring a touchdown; every touchdown is worth 7 points.x
Special ScoringIn the second half of play, if a team leads their opponent by a margin of 28 points or more, the score will be noted, and the score on the scoreboard will be changed to 0 for both teams. Officials will keep track of the score. The rest of the game will still be played, and the clock will continue to stop and start as normal. The team that is ahead by 28 points or more shall not pass the football or run outside the hash marks. If a player on the winning team crosses the hash marks, the player shall be immediately considered down and the play whistled dead. The ball shall be placed in the middle of the field for every offensive play by the winning team. If the lead falls below 28 points, the winning team may pass or run as normal again, and normal play will resume, but the scoreboard will still display a score of 0-0.xxx
In the second half of play, if a team leads their opponent by a margin of 28 points or more, the winning team must run between the tight ends and the center. If there are no tight ends in the formation, they must run between the center and guards. If the offense does not follow these rules, the ball is dead, and the down counts.x
Kick OffsThere are no kickoffs; play will start on the 30-yard line.xx
There are no kickoffs; play will start on the 15-yard line.x
PuntsIntent to punt must be declared to the opposing team prior to the play.xxx
Fake punts are not allowed.xxx
When punting, the ball shall be snapped from the line of scrimmage. The punter who receives the snap must punt the ball at least five (5) yards behind the line of scrimmage.xxx
There is no line play or defensive rush during a punt.xxx
The only four (4) players allowed on the field during a punt are the center who snaps the ball, the punter, and two defensive players who may attempt to field the punt.xxx
A team may not punt inside their opponent's 30-yard line.xxx
After a punt, the ball is spotted where the return team catches and controls the ball, or where the ball is kicked out of bounds, or where the ball comes to rest, unless that spot is less than 25 yards from the original line of scrimmage. There is no run after a catch.xxx
After a punt, the ball shall be placed a minimum of 25 yards downfield from the original line of scrimmage before the punt.xxx
Any punt possession between the 10-yard line and goal line is automatically spotted on the 10-yard line.xxx
A punt into the end zone or beyond is spotted on the 20-yard line.xx
A punt into the end zone or beyond is spotted on the 15-yard line.x
Clock stops for all punt plays.x
DefenseA defensive player may cover any offensive player either on or off the line of scrimmage, except the center, who is never covered. A defensive lineman cannot line up in front of the center.xxx
Any defensive player NOT on the line of scrimmage must be 5 yards off the line of scrimmage until the snap.xxx
Fumbles and interceptions are live balls and can be advanced by any defensive player, even red-dot players.xxx
Horse collar tackles are not allowed. A horse collar (according to YSF) is defined as placing the hand inside the side or back (not the front) of the jersey or shoulder pads, and grabbing or pulling the runner. Even if the runner is not tackled to the ground or just forced out of bounds, it is still considered a horse collar.xxx15 yds.
A player may not be tackled or pulled to the ground using any part of the helmet.xxx15 yds.
When the offense is inside the opponent's 5-yard line, defensive players not on the line of scrimmage can be on the goal line when the ball is snapped, and a defensive player can cover the center. Inside the 2-yard line, a defensive player covering the center must be in a 3- or 4-point stance.xxx
11-man DefenseA maximum of six players (no minimum) can be on the defensive line of scrimmage and must be heads up on the offensive player, helmet to helmet.xx
Any defensive lineman covering an offensive guard or offensive tackle must be in a 3- or 4-point stance.xx
8-man DefenseA maximum of five (5) players and a minimum of four (4) can be on the defensive line of scrimmage.x
Four (4) of the five (5) players must be heads up on an offensive player who is on or off the line of scrimmage, but the center may not be covered.x
If five (5) players are used on the defensive line of scrimmage, the player who is not heads up on an offensive player must be lined up outside the offensive guards.x
Any defensive lineman covering an offensive guard must be in a 3- or 4- point stance.x
OffenseThe center handles the snap of the football.xxx
Two (2) guards are required, one on each side of the center, and no more than 1-yard split from the center.xxx
Any player not on the line of scrimmage is a backfield player.xxx
A straight (stiff) arm above an opposing player's shoulders is not allowed.xxx5 yds.
All blocks must be above the knees.xxx15 yds.
Anyone who receives a direct snap from the center may not run in the "A" gap; this includes shotgun
formation.
xxx5 yds.
11-man OffenseThere must be 7 players on the line of scrimmage and no more.xx
Two (2) tackles are required, each on the outside of a guard, and no more than 1-yard split from the guards.xx
There may be one (1) or two (2) tight ends, with no more than a 1-yard split from their nearest tackle.xx
There may be one (1) or two (2) split ends. The distance between the split end and the nearest tackle must be a minimum of seven (7) yards.xx
A team cannot use an unbalanced line set; there must be 3 players on each side of the center on the line of
scrimmage. (This does not count players off the line of scrimmage, like slot backs.)
xx
8-man OffenseA maximum of five (5) players are allowed on the line of scrimmage.x
There may be one (1) or two (2) tight ends, with no more than a 1-yard split from their nearest guard.x
There may be one (1) or two (2) split ends. The distance between the split end and the nearest guard must be a minimum of seven (7) yards.x
A team cannot use an unbalanced line set; there must be 2 players on each side of the center on the line of
scrimmage. (This does not count players off the line of scrimmage, like slot backs.)
x