PENN Athletics Rule Exceptions

Rule: Coaches are allowed on the field to direct players according to need and division. Coaches must move to the sidelines before the snap of the ball.

Exception: Coaches may remain on the field in our 1st Grade and younger leagues.

Rule: The center must snap the ball with a rapid and continuous motion between his/her legs to a player in the backfield, and the ball must completely leave his/her hands.

Exception: Side snaps are permitted in our First Grade Leagues.

Exception: Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten is coach snap, where a coach takes a knee and side snaps the football.


Brief Rules

  • A Coin Toss determines Offense and Defense
  • All jerseys MUST be tucked in before play begins.
  • Flags must be pointed down and out before, and during, the game.

  • The Line of Scrimmage and the Rush Line seven yards from the Line of Scrimmage will be marked with orange cones.
  • Each time the ball is spotted, a team has 30 seconds to snap the ball.
  • The quarterback has a seven-second “pass clock.”

  • Shovel passes are allowed, but must be received beyond the line of scrimmage.
  • Only direct handoffs behind the line of scrimmage are permitted.
  • Absolutely NO laterals of any kind.
  • “Center sneak” play is no longer allowed. The QB is not allowed to handoff to the center on the first handoff of the play.

  • Interceptions are returnable, but not on conversions after touchdowns.
  • Interceptions change the possession of the ball at the point of interception.
  • Interceptions are the only changes of possession that do not start on the 5-yard line.

  • No Run Zone. 5-yard no run zones precede the half field line and goal line for the offense.

NO Flag Guarding.

  • Flag guarding is an attempt by the ball-carrier to obstruct the defender’s access to the flags by stiff arming, dropping the head, hand, arm or shoulder or intentionally covering the flags with the football jersey.
  • Runners may not leave their feet to advance the ball.
  • Diving, leaping or jumping to avoid a flag pull is considered flag guarding.
  • Deliberately obstructed flags will be considered flag guarding.

    • No blocking or “screening” is allowed at any time.
    • Offensive players without the ball must stop their motion once the ball has crossed the line of scrimmage. No running with the ball-carrier.