AYB Rules



Current official rules and regulations are defined by the National Federation of State High School Associations Basketball Rules Book except where amended and superseded by these standing rules or by the bylaws of the Arcadia Youth Basketball Association. Go to www.nfhs.org for National Federation of State High School Associations information


3rd-6th grade divisions: 28.5”  

7th-8th grade division: 29.5”

Length of Games/Overtime

Games will start at the scheduled time and are comprised of 4 ten minute quarters. If a team does not show up within 5 minutes of their scheduled game time, that team will forfeit the game. A team is allowed to play a game with as few as four players. The coach of a team with less than five players may forfeit the game if he/she chooses. In the case of a forfeit, the court may be used for practice by the two scheduled teams. The forfeited game will not be rescheduled. There will not be a penalty if a player shows up late to a game that is already in session. That player will still be allowed to play in the game.  Games tied at the end of regulation will be completed using a 2 minute stopped time overtime period. One timeout is allowed per team. No timeouts will carry over! Should it go into 3 OT, the first team to score wins.


Games are played with a running clock. The final 2 minutes of the game is played with a stopping clock only if the score is within 10 points for the 3rd-4th grade division and within 15 points for 5th-8th grade division. A stopping clock is when the clock stops with each whistle blow (not with each basket made). The clock will resume once the ball is inbounded and touched by a player.

The scoreboard will be turned off if there is a difference of 25 or more points between the two teams.


Each team is allowed TWO (2) timeouts per half, and may be used at anytime during the game. 


Coaches will be required to substitute players at the 5 minute mark of every quarter for the first 3 quarters. Each player must play 5 minutes in each quarter for the first 3 quarters. For teams that have 6 or 7 players who show up for the game, each player must sit out for at least 5 minutes per game. For teams that have 8 or more players who show up for the game, each player must sit out for at least 5 minutes per half. No player will be able to play an entire game without sitting out unless a team has only 4 or 5 players. A player may be subbed out if he/she is injured only (during the 5 minute required playing time).  AYB staff will stop the clock at the 5 minute mark of every quarter for the first 3 quarters to allow the substitutions to take place. Coaches are responsible for making sure each player has played their time and has sat out as well. The players who are going into the game should kneel down near the scorekeeper’s table, ready to go in, knowing which player they are subbing for. The 4th quarter will be coaches option. Coaches will be able to substitute at their leisure depending on the game situation. 


3rd-4th Grade Division ONLY - May only use man to man defense or man to man press. May not use zone defense or zone press. Double/triple teaming a player will be allowed.

A Full Court Press is permitted at the following times:
3rd-4th Grade Division- Pressing is allowed the entire game, unless team is ahead by 10 or more points.
5th-6th Grade Division- Pressing is allowed the entire game, unless team is ahead by 15 or more points.

7th-8th Grade Division- Pressing is allowed the entire game, unless team is ahead by 15 or more points.


Once a player commits 5 personal fouls, that player can no longer play in the game and must sit out for the remainder of the game. Once a team reaches 7 fouls, then the player who was fouled is awarded 1 free throw. If that player makes his/her 1st shot, then he/she is awarded another free throw. Once a team commits 10 fouls, 2 free throws will be awarded to the other team. Fouls reset at the half. On intentional fouls (where you don’t play the ball or where you hug the player or pull on the player’s jersey of shorts), the offending team retains ball position in addition to the free throws being awarded.


3rd-4th grade division: the shooter’s feet must be behind the free throw line before shooting, but may cross the line after shooting.

5th-8th grade division: the shooter’s feet must remain behind the free throw line until the ball hits the rim.

The players lined up around the key may not enter the lane until the ball is released. The shooter and players behind the 3 point line cannot enter until the ball hits the rim.

If a player is fouled and is injured and unable to shoot free throws, the coach may sub that player out with another player on the bench to shoot the free throws. That injured player will be allowed back into the game if well enough to play again.


The dribbler is not considered to be in the front court until both feet and the basketball are in the front court. If the dribbler has one foot in the backcourt while the ball and the other foot are in the front court, the dribbler is still considered to be in the backcourt. Once the dribbler has both feet and the ball in the front court, the ball must remain in the front court from that point forward. If the dribbler in the front court passes the ball to a player who originally was backcourt, then catches the ball while crossing the line and then ends up in the front court, that is a backcourt violation because the ball attains backcourt status as soon as that player catches the ball, then front court status again when he/she lands.


At the end of the game, please have your players huddle and call out the other team's name to commend them for a game well played, then form a line to high five the other team's players. **In light of the Coronavirus, in lieu of high fives, coaches and players may choose to lightly fist bump, elbow bump, or do a namaste bow.** Please also thank the officials. You may then proceed out of the gym for your post game huddle to talk about the positives of the game and what can be worked on at the next practice. 

Dress Code

All players will wear the uniforms provided by the league. Jewelry will not be permitted at any time during a game and should be discouraged in practice. All coaches will be responsible for seeing that their players are not wearing watches, necklaces, bracelets, earrings, or hair clips. These items pose a threat to the safety of the players wearing them and to the other players as well.