Many times when I speak to basketball fans about a rule, they will reply, “I didn’t know that!” This week’s article will highlight some of those odd rules and lesser known violations.
* A player may not strike the ball with the fist. If done, the opponents get the ball for a throw-in.
* A player may not leave the playing surface for an unauthorized reason. Some players will run out of bounds on the baseline to go around a screen. Once again, the other team gets the ball.
* A player may bat the ball into the air while dribbling. As odd as it may sound, a dribbler can actually bat the ball over the opponent’s head and then run around him and continue his dribble. There is only one catch. After the ball is batted, it must touch the floor before the dribbler touches it again!
* If a player makes a field goal in the opponent’s basket, the opponent gets the points. However, if by mistake, the officials permit the teams to go the wrong direction and score points for a while, all of those points will be counted as if it were their own basket.
Then the refs will make the teams turn around and go in the right direction. (Shame on the officials!).
* If a player dunks the ball in the game, he’s a hero. If he dunks in warm-up prior to the game, he’s a goat! He gets a technical foul, his coach is charged with this technical foul indirectly and must sit down on the bench the entire game. It counts as one team foul and the game starts with the opponents shooting two free throws and the ball for a throw in. (I told you he was a goat!)
* If players fight, they will receive flagrant technical fouls and be ejected. Most people know that. However, if during the fight, players leave the bench and come out on the floor, even though they do not fight, they also will be charged with flagrant technicals and be ejected!
It is very important that players stay in the bench area and these strict rules are intended to reinforce that premise. The fight is bad enough, but if people rush the court, it could become a riot!
* Only one player on a team may wear the number 0 or 00.
* All headbands must be the same color. If a player wears an undershirt, both of his sleeves must be the same length!
* A player may not throw the ball up through the basket. It is a violation.
* If a player excessively swings his elbows, but does not make contact with the opponent, this player has violated and the other team will get the ball for a throw-in.
* Multiple players of the inbounding team may not line up side by side in a wall formation, parallel to the boundary line and within three feet of it. They may, however, “stack it up,” perpendicular to the boundary line while still maintaining a three-foot clearance to the boundary line.
* If a player fakes being fouled, he will be charged with a technical for an unsportsmanlike act. (Yes, this is definitely a judgment call. It would probably take an academy award performance to get an official to call this technical!)
* If a player is smoking, chewing tobacco or dipping snuff, he will be charged with a technical foul. I’m not kidding! It’s rule 10-3-6-g.
* If a player removes his jersey and pants or her jersey and skirt within the visual confines of the playing area, a technical foul will be charged. I’ve heard of boys getting angry and taking off their jerseys, but hopefully they’ll keep their pants on! (Yes, girls are allowed to wear skirts!)
* If a player is holding the ball, he may only touch his feet or hand to the floor. If he touches his knee, elbow, shoulder or backside, he will be charged with traveling.