BCSL By-Laws

The Berkeley Adult Co-ed Soccer League is offered to provide Berkeley, Albany, El Cerrito and other communities with an opportunity for individuals with like interest to pursue sport activities. Through the organization of leagues, recognition is given to the needs of the community for competition, sportsmanship and teamwork.

1. Team Roster      

     a. Teams may list a maximum of 25 players but only 22 players may be listed on the team roster including managers and coaches if they are playing.

     b. All male players must be at least 25 years of age, all female players must be 18 years of age. If a league official becomes suspicious of the eligibility of a player, that official may request proof of identity. That proof must be provided.

     c. Teams must have players who are 40 years old and over. Points will be taken away if league determines that the older players are only listed to satisfy the league's age requirement. In other words, these players must be playing their games. No team shall have 100% under 30 players.

     d. No player may be added after the 9th game in the season.  

2.  Game Card

     a. Prior to the start of each game the home team must provide the referee a game card that is completely filled out. Home team is first on the schedule.

     b. Both teams must submit a roster of players with jersey numbers to the referee at the beginning of every game. The referee will NOT START game unless this requirement is satisfied.

3.  Player Pass

     a. All players must have a player pass before they can play in any BCSL games.

     b. Teams using players without proper and valid passes with the current sticker will forfeit each game in which that player plays.

     c. Any person or team using falsified information to procure a player pass is liable for disciplinary action by the league.

     d. All players completing a player pass application form must sign an insurance waiver with the league, before they can play in any BCSL games. The waiver is for liability insurance only. It does not include medical coverage. Such insurance is the responsibility of the player.

     e. Any manager who plays a player who does not have a valid BCSL player pass is liable for disciplinary action by the league.

     f. If a player pass is lost a duplicate must be issued. The player may only play with the permission of the league director.

4.  Uniforms

     a. Every player must be in a team uniform with an assigned number clearly showing on the jersey.

     b. In the event of a color similarity between jerseys of opposing teams, the home team will make alternate uniform arrangements. A solid color shirt is acceptable provided that numbers can be seen. Scrimmage vest is preferable.

     c. If the referee determines that there is too much similarity between the jersey colors of the opposing team, and both teams are unable to provide acceptable alternative jerseys, the home team will forfeit the match. 

     d. Molded cleat soccer shoes must be worn by players. No metal cleats or shoes with a center toe cleat of any kind allowed. Players must wear shin guards at all times. Cardboard, newspaper, bits of clothing may not be used.

5.  Forfeits

     a. If a team is absent for 10 minutes from the scheduled kick-off time, they forfeit the game and score will be 1-0.

     b. A minimum of seven (7) players per team is required to start a game, three (3) of them have to be women. If a team does not have the minimum requirement of 3 female players to start a game, that team forfeits and score will be 1-0.

     c. If a team decides that they don't want to play their scheduled game with another team, the league director or referee assignor must be notified immediately and at least 72 hours before the scheduled match. If the 72 hour time frame is not satisfied, that team forfeits the game and score will be 3-0. The no show team will also pay the referee's fee if he shows up as scheduled. 

      d. If the referee is a "no show", a pick-up referee should be agreed upon and the game counts. The referee can be anyone agreed upon by both team managers. If there is no referee, game should be scrimmage or friendly game only (scores will not be recorded), or, reschedule game if a field is available.

6.  Protests

     a. . No protest will be considered on any judgment call.  Protests arising out of a rule interpretation are not allowed.

     b. The league director and the disciplinary committee will rule all formal protests. All teams must abide by the committee's rulings. If they do not and/or withdraw from the league, they forfeit any refund of fees, trophies, league standings and returning team status.     

7. Field Rules

     All games played in the BCSL will be conducted according to FIFA (Federation Internationale de Football Association) and USSF (United States Soccer Federation) rules and regulations except where superseded by the league's by-laws and modifications.

     a.  One referee will officiate each game and will also act as line person. Referees have complete jurisdiction from the time they enter the field of play until the time they leave the field of play.

     b.  No team may begin to play or continue to play with fewer than seven players, at least three (3) of whom have to be women. For each team, there must be no more than six (6) men on the field (including goalie) and no fewer than three (3) women on the field. This means that if a team have 3 to 11 women and no men, game will begin. If team have 6 men and only 2 women, team will forfeit game.

     c.  Games will consist of two forty five (45) minute halves, with a 7 minute halftime. A 15 minute grace period beyond the official start time will be allowed if needed for a team to collect the necessary 7-player minimum. However, this time will be subtracted from playing time. 

     d.  Slide tackles are illegal in the BCSL and considered dangerous play, so an indirect free kick shall be awarded when they occur. (See Modifications of the FIFA Rules of the Game for further clarification).

          d. 1.  If the slide tackle is intentional, it must be sanctioned as unsporting behavior and the offending player must be cautioned.

          d. 2.  If, in the referee's judgment, it is not clear that the slide tackle is intentional, the referee shall award an indirect free kick, but shall not caution the player that committed the foul. It is not illegal to slide for the ball (for example, in order to put a cross into the goal). It is not illegal to play the ball while one is on the ground. However, if the referee judges the situation dangerous, an indirect free kick may be awarded for dangerous play.

     e.  In the attacking half of the field, only women may take free kicks. This does not include corner kicks - men may take corner kicks. Only women may take penalty kicks (except for the penalty phase of playoff/championship matches). Women must take all drop balls.

          e. 1.  When women are taking free kicks in the attacking half, the men on that team must also be 10 yards away from the ball.

      f. Teams are allowed unlimited substitutions. A team may substitute on the following:

        1.  On a throw-in for either team.
        2.  On goal kick.
        3.  On any kick-off.
        4.  If the game has been stopped for an injury.

     g.  Any player who is bleeding must be immediately removed from the game. When the bleeding has stopped and the would has been covered, the player may re-renter the game per the substitution rule. Any bloody clothing must be changed before re-entering the game.

     h.  If a team has only seven (7) players and drops below seven because of an injury, the game shall be terminated unless the team can replace the injured player with another player from other teams with the permission of the opposing team. Remember, although league is becoming competitive, we are here to have fun, so share the joy with others, especially if there is an injury. If the opposing team does not agree, it will be a forfeit for the team with less players. Recorded score will be 1-0.

      i.  Informal field rule: Under no circumstance should teams play on when it is known that there is an injury. There is a tradition that players from either side deliberately kick the ball out of play when they become aware of an injury. Custom dictates that when the game resumes, the team awarded the throw- in immediately kick the ball out of play so that the possessors of the ball at the time of the injury will recover it. It is totally uncool to use an opponents injury to advantage.

8.  Player/Team Conduct
     a.  Any team and/or player found under the influence of alcoholic beverages, illegal substances and/or having possession of a weapon will be removed from the league for the rest of the season, with the possibility of being suspended from further participation in the league. Consumption of any alcoholic beverages immediately before, during or immediately after the playing of games is prohibited. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed on city park grounds. 

     b.  Teams or individual players involved in fighting before, during or after a game will not be allowed to participate in the league.

     c.  If a player plays in any game while suspended, the team forfeits all of the game in which the ineligible player has played and the team has won. The results of these games shall be 1-0. The players shall also be suspended for the remainder of the season and possibly the following season. In addition, the manager shall be suspended from managing and playing for the balance of the current season and possibly the following season.

 9.  League Regulations

    a.  A team must have paid all league fees and a player pass application form and insurance waiver turned in before being considered registered in the BCSL.

    b. To provide a balance program, the league director has the option of moving players or teams and may change or revise league schedules.     

     c.  After the first regular scheduled game, all teams forfeit the right to their entry fees unless the entire league is disbanded, whereby all teams will be refunded the entry fee minus all costs of the league to that point.

     d.  The league director has the authority to eject players or forfeit games. The director reserves the right to establish or suspend regulations at any time deemed necessary for the efficient operation of the league.  

     e.  Each team should have a captain or manager and co-captain or assistant manager. They are in charge of the team and are responsible for their team's conduct. 

      f.   No team or individual may take players from an existing team without the permission of the team manager. 

      g.  Transfers can only take place before the start of the season. All transfers must fill out a waiver form. Transferring every season is not allowed. 

      h.  Due to the shortage of female players, women may play on 2 teams. They should wear a scrimmage vest over their team jersey. Men can only be on one team.
10.  Manager and Team Responsibilities 

     a. The manager will be responsible to see that all their players know and abide by the rules as stated in these by-laws. Further, managers are responsible for their players knowing and abiding by the rules and regulations. Penalty: If a manager cannot or will not control his/her players and spectators, he/she faces league action ranging from probation to jeopardy of losing the game by forfeiture.

     b.  The manager shall be the official representative of the team unless he/she designates one of the players as a team captain prior to the game. Only the manager and/or his/her designated team captain may discuss a call or decision made by the referee. The manager or designated team captain is responsible for having the team cooperate with the referee or league officials.

     c.  Managers who see a player getting worked-up over interactions with other players or referee calls should substitute that player out for a cooling off period. If you are playing and see yourself getting angry, consider subbing yourself out before your manager takes action, or worse, your anger leads you to make bad decisions.

     d.  Managers should discourage unruly behavior or unsporting conduct on and off the field, and are responsible for people on their touch lines. Over-zealous spectators should be discouraged from making rude or disparaging remarks. Although the managers may not have direct control over non-players, it is within the referees' power to award cards to teams when their supporters are disruptive.