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Game Rules for all USBA Basketball Tournaments


Note: The National High School Federation Rules & Regulations will apply to all USBA games
with the following exceptions:


1. Two halves will be played with normal clock operation (Stop-Time):
a. 7th Grade thru 12th Grade will play two 16-minute halves
b. 2nd Grade thru 6th Grade will play two 14-minute halves
c. Boys 6th Grade and below will play with the 28.5 intermediate basketball


2. 5 minutes will be allotted for pre-game warm up time and halftime. This time may be
adjusted at the discretion of the gym director. Games may start ahead of schedule if
agreed upon by both head coaches.


3. 4 Timeouts per game (2 Full, 2 30-sec). One additional timeout per team will be allowed
for each overtime period. There will be no carry over of timeouts to the two-minute
overtime period.


4. Two direct technical fouls on any player, coach, or team representative will result in an
immediate ejection from the facility and disqualification for the following game.


5. The designated home team is required to provide the official scorebook, however it is
suggested the visiting team also keep a scorebook at the table to alleviate discrepancies.
USBA will attempt to provide clock operators at all sites, however if a USBA rep is
unavailable, the visiting team will be responsible for providing a clock operator.


6. If a team has a 20-point lead at any point in the game, the clock will run continuously
except during a timeout. To resume normal clock operation, the trailing team must shrink
the deficit to under 20 points. A team with a 20-point lead is not permitted to press full


7. Each Overtime period will be 2 minutes.

8. Each team is responsible for their own warm-up basketballs and game basketballs and/or
any other items brought to game. The designated home team will provide the game


9. If a team forfeits two or more pool play games for a given tournament, the team will be
disqualified from the event and cannot participate in the tournament rounds of

competition for that event. A forfeit for any reason will result in a 15-0 win for the non-
forfeited team.


10. A 5-minute grace period will be extended for late-arriving teams, a forfeit will occur after
this point.


11. Coaches must have coach’s band placed on wrist at all times, lost passes will need to be


Roster Rules for all USBA Basketball Tournaments

1. Boys participate at current grade level (age limits apply) – Refer to “Eligibility”

2. Girls participate at current grade level (age limits apply) – Refer to “Eligibility”

3. Proof of age and grade is required.
a. Acceptable Proof of Age: clean photocopies of birth certificates, state-issued ID,
adoption documentation, immigration documentation, school documentation, or
b. Acceptable Proof of Grade: clean copy of school issued report card/progress
report from current calendar year/semester.
Note: Teams are required to have proof of age/grade upon tournament check-in.


4. Players can play up in grade level, but not down. (exceptions occur, refer to “Eligibility”)

5. Players must remain on one roster and cannot participate on two different teams
(regardless if team is in same organization


6. No roster additions will be permitted after the team has begun play of its first game.

7. Any team violating roster or team rules will be disqualified.

8. Eligibility Protests: Only head coaches are allowed to challenge the legitimacy or
eligibility of an opposing player. Fans, parents, and assistant coaches are not allowed to
make an official challenge. Challenge must be made before the game starts, no
challenge can be made post-game.


9. If a player who’s eligibility is challenged is found to be eligible with proper paperwork
(birth certificate/report card), the challenging team will lose a timeout and be assessed a
technical foul.


10. Players who are found to be illegal will result in an automatic team disqualification;
please ensure all players are compliant with the eligibility criteria. If no documents are
present for proof of identity, the player in question is disqualified and the protested team
will lose a timeout and be assessed a technical foul.


Divisions of Play

The USBA currently offers one division of play at each grade level for boys and girls throughout
USBA Regular Season Tournaments. However, three divisions are currently used for USBA
National Championships.

Additional rules regarding protests, tournament conduct, forfeits, uniforms, coaching
attire, and withdrawal policy can be found at –

Seeding for Regular Season, State, & Regional Tournaments (3 Game Guarantee)

1. In a regular season tournament, each team will be placed in a pool and play two pool
games. If there are less than six teams in a division, there will be only one pool. The
USBA reserves the right to place a team “up” to have enough teams for pool play. For
example: There must be at least 3 teams in a given division to form a pool; if there is one

7th Grade team and two 8th Grade teams, the USBA will place the 7th Grade team “up” to
have three teams, completing the minimum number of teams to form a pool.


2. After each team has played two pool play games, teams will then be placed in a single
elimination tournament bracket based on win-loss record.


3. Ties are broken by who won head to head competitions (2 teams tied). See “Tie Breaker
System” for all other tie scenarios.


4. The tournament director’s decision is final regarding placement of teams.

5. If a team “plays up” (e.g. 6th Grade playing in a 7th Grade division) team ranking points
will apply to the grade level in which the team registered for the tournament.

Tie Breaker System

Pool Play Tie Breaker – 2 Teams

• In a situation where two teams are tied, head to head competition will determine the
winner. If the two teams did not face one another during pool play, the point
differential system will be used with common opponents.

• If more than two teams tie, a point differential tiebreaker will be applied. The point
differentials of the teams involved in the tie are totaled. Teams are then seeded
according to the sum of the point differential – with the highest number placing 1st
the next highest placing 2nd, and so on. (The maximum that you can beat a team and
still gain an advantage is 15 points)

• If teams remain tied after the application of the point differential formula, the higher
seed is rewarded to the team with the fewest combined points scored against them.

• The score of all forfeits shall be 15-0, in favor of the non-forfeited team.

Tie Breaker Formula Example for 3 Teams Tied After Pool Play

In this example, each team has a record of 1-1 after two pool play games and teams have all
played each other.

1. Determine the point differential for the tied teams. The maximum is 15 points.
2. Seed teams with the highest point differential being 1st and the lowest being 3rd.
3. If 3 teams are still tied after this tiebreaker, use the points scored against formula with
no regard to the 15 point maximum.

Team A: 1 win 1 loss
Team B: 1 win 1 loss
Team C: 1 win 1 loss


Results Differential/15pt Max Points Scored Against Placement
Team A
A vs B (A-69 B-55) +14 (55)

Page | 8

C vs A (C-51 A-46) -5 (51)
Differential Factor +9 (106) 1st


Results Differential/15pt Max Points Scored Against Placement
Team B
A vs B (A-69 B-55) -14 (69)
B vs C (B-66 C-33) +15 (33)
Differential Factor +1 (102) 2nd


Results Differential/15pt Max Points Scored Against Placement
Team C
C vs A (C-51 A-46) +5 (46)
B vs C (B-66 C-33) -15 (66)
Differential Factor -10 (112) 3rd


Note: Team A would be the #1 seed in this three-way tie scenario because they have the highest
point differential total (+9), followed by Team B (+1) and Team C (-10), respectively. Had teams
remained tied after the point differential formula, points scored against would then determine
seeding. In that scenario, Team B would be the #1 seed because they have the least amount of
points scored against them (102) during pool play, followed by Team A (106) and Team C (112).

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