The following 7 on 7 flag football rules are FlagSpin approved and what what most collegiate intramural organizations run with. Do check with your local league or tournament organizer to verify their rules, as many use custom variations to match their preferred play style.
BASIC PLAYING RULES
The following rules are derived from the NIRSA Flag/Touch Football Rules and Officials Manual – 14th edition.
RULE 1 – GAME, FIELD, PLAYERS, AND EQUIPMENT
- The game consists of four ten (10) minute quarters. THE CLOCK WILL NOT STOP FOR DEAD BALLS UNTIL THE LAST 2 MINUTES OF THE GAME. The clock will stop on all time-outs and injuries.
- Each team will be allowed 2 time-outs per game. Time-outs will be 30 seconds in length.
- Teams must report to the playing site at least 20 minutes prior to game time. GAME TIME IS FORFEIT TIME.
- Players must check in with their Mav Express ID Card at the check in window in order to get on a roster.
- Mercy Rule – : If a team is ahead by 19 points or more (25 for co rec) when the referee announces the 2-minute warning for the second half, the game shall be over. The same rules applies if a team scores inside 2 minutes with this differential. If a team is ahead by 37 points (49 for co-rec) with 10 or less minutes to play in the game, the game will be over.
- 40 yards by 80 yards with 10-yard end zones. Field is marked into four (4) 20-yard zones.
- Team areas are located two (2) yards from each sideline and between the 20-yard lines.
- Seven (7) players constitute a men’s, women’s, or open team.
- Eight (8) players constitute a co-rec team. No sex may exceed four (4) players.
- Roster limit is fifteen (13) excluding non-playing manager and coach for men’s and women’s and sixteen (13) for co-rec.
- Each player must wear shoes made of soft, pliable upper material (canvas, leather, or synthetic), which covers the foot, attached to a one-piece molded composite bottom. Screw-in cleats are allowed if the screw is part of the cleat. Cleats may not be metal.
- Each player must wear a one-piece belt (provided by Campus Rec), without any knots, at the waistline with three (3) flags attached permanently.
- Jerseys must be long enough so they remain tucked in during the down or short enough so that they are 4” above the player’s waistline. Jerseys must be of like color. Jerseys will be provided for teams who do not have jerseys.
- Teams may check out a football or bring their own. If you bring your own ball, the official ball shall be pebble-grained leather or rubber covered and meets the requirements of size and shape for a regulation football. There are no requirements regarding ball pressure and markings. Men shall use the regular size ball only. The regular, intermediate, youth, or junior size football shall be used for Women’s and Co-rec games. The referee shall be the sole judge of any ball offered for play and may change the ball during play at his/her discretion. During the game each team must use a legal ball of its choice when in possession.
RULE 2 – DEFINITIONS
- The restraining line for the defense is its vertical plane which passes one yard from the point of the ball nearest to its goal line. The defense may not cross the restraining line once the referee has blown the ready for play whistle.
RULE 3 – SERIES OF DOWNS AND ZONE LINE-TO-GAIN
- There are 4 downs to advance the ball into the next zone. Zone lines are the 20-yard, 40-yard, and 20-yard lines.
RULE 4 – SCORING
- Touchdown – 6 points / Safety – 2 points.
- Point After Try:
- By running or passing from the 3-yard line – 1 point.
- By running or passing from the 10-yard line – 2 points.
- By running or passing from the 20-yard line – 3 points.
- No field goals or kicking for point after touchdown.
- A change of possession on a PAT that results in a score will always be worth 3 points.
- If a female throws or scores a touchdown the point value is 9. (Co-rec rule only)
- All PAT point values stay the same in Co-rec regardless of whether or not a female was involved.
RULE 5 – PERSONAL FOUL
- Block: Teammates of the runner or passer may use screen blocking but shall not use interlocked interference by grasping or encircling one another.
- Offensive blocking shall take place without contact. The blocker shall have his or her hands behind his or her back. Any use of the arms, elbows, or legs during on offensive player’s screen block is illegal.
- Defensive players must go around the offensive player’s screen block. The arms may not be used as a wedge to contact the opponent.
- The application of this rule depends entirely on the judgement of the officials.