Age Requirements: 

  • Age as of  November 1 of the current year. 
  • Birth Certificate is required.


Age Divisions: 

  • 5-6 year olds
  • 7-8 year olds
  • 9-10 year olds
  • 11-13 year olds
  • 14-15 year olds

Universal Sports League reserves the right to alter the age divisions as deemed necessary. Players may play up a division but not down. 

No dunking!! 

Scorekeeper / clock operator: 

  • USL may have scorekeepers designated for each game. If not, each team must provide a scorebook and scorekeeper who will sit at the score table during the game.  No others will be allowed at the table during the game.
  • Home team will keep score and the visitors will operate the clock unless otherwise agreed upon.


 Goal Height: 

  • 5-6 will have 8 feet goal height
  • 7-8 will be 8 ½ feet
  • 9-10 and older will be 10 feet

Basketball size:

  • 5-6 - youth basketball
  • 7-8 - 28.5
  • 9-10 and 11-14 - 29.5
  • During practices basketballs will be supplied by coaches.  For team safety, only players may use basketballs supplied by coaches. Players should not bring personal balls into the gym for practices unless instructed by their coach.
  • No spectators shall use any balls on court sides or side goal during practices. 
  • On game day, basketballs will be supplied by the league and used for warm up. No other basketballs will be allowed in the gym with exception of the head coach and in a ball bag.  All other balls will be requested to be taken out of the gym.


 Game Length: 

              ·         7 minutes quarters with the clock stopping for shooting fouls, free throws, time outs and large substitutions. 

·         Clock will run on a violation.  

·         The clock will stop on every whistle in the last minute of the second and fourth quarter.

·         5-minute grace period will be allowed before a forfeit will be called. If a team is late, they must begin play as soon as they have 5 players, within the 5-minute grace period. 


  • 3 minute OT beginning with jump ball
  • Second OT will be Sudden Death


Time outs: 

  • Two time outs per half.
  • Unused time outs do not carry over to the next half or overtime
  • One time in OT    


Half time: 

  • 4 minutes


Player fouls: 

  • A player is disqualified on his/her fifth personal foul and will be seated the remainder of the game and not to leave the gym

 Bonus Free Throws: 

  • 1 on 1 on the 7th team foul.
  • Double bonus on the 10th team foul. 

Technical foul - Coaches

  • Coaches 1st tech in any game will result in the coach to be seated during the rest of that game. 
  • A coach to receive a 2nd tech in the same game will be ejected from the game and must leave the gym and pay a $10.00 fine. 
  • When a coach receives his 3rd tech, he pays a fine of 15.00 and like the 1st tech in a game he must be seated during the rest of that game. 
  • When a coach receives a 4th tech he will pay a 20.00 fine and depending on if it is the 1st tech in a game or 2nd tech in a game the rule for being seated or ejected will apply and fine added which increases in increments of 5.00.


 Technical foul – Player:

·         Any player to receive 2 technical fouls will be seated the remainder of the game and not to leave the gym.


 Full court press: 

·         Full court press is allowed for all divisions (excluding 5-6 year olds) for the entire game unless the team ahead matches and or exceeds the excessive lead rule.

·         The 5-6 division will have no full court pressing/backcourt guarding no matter the score the entire game. 

·         The 5-6 division when there is a possession change all (defensive and offensive) players must retreat and remain inside the 3-point circle until the ball crosses half court with exception of one defensive player. Only one defensive player can defend beyond  the 3-point circle after the offensive player brings the ball across the half court line.  Once the offensive player passes the ball after crossing half court the all players are allowed to move beyond the 3-point area.  

·         Coaches are responsible for monitoring the excessive lead rule, not officials.

·         Coaches should "cordially" communicate with each other on the sidelines when the excessive lead rule had been reached. 

·         Coaches must verbally tell their players when the excessive lead rule has been reached and to back off. 

·         If the team ahead reaches the excessive lead rule and violates the press restriction rule they will be penalized. 

·         The 1st violation is a warning and if the ball is stolen it will be given back to the team behind for a throw in. 

·         Subsequent violations are a Team Technical charged to the player.


 Excessive lead rule: 

  • A team with a 15-point or more advantage will not be allowed to press until the ball passes the half court line. 
  • The defensive team must retreat beyond the half court line with no trapping and must play man to man inside the 3 point line. 
  • Penalty: 

·         First offense is a warning. 

·         Second offense is a technical foul which will result in one free throw shot and take the ball out at the division line opposite the score table. 

·         Same will apply for each additional violation. 

  • Referees discretion to charge a Technical foul to the coach, if determine that the coach is making a mockery of the rule.


 Player/Team conduct:

  • All player, coaches and parents should treat the game officials with respect and not argue a call or offer negative comments from the sideline.
  • Profanity of any kind can result in an ejection from the game, regardless of where or whom it is directed to. 
  • Any player, coach or parent displaying behavior that is detrimental to the league and its participants will be asked to leave the gym by an official or league administrator.
  • These rule applied to players, all coaches and parents.  It is the coach’s responsibility to convey sportsmanship to the team and parents and the rules of conduct. 



·         Each team shall have one head coach and no more than two assistant coaches. All coaches must submit an application. 

·         A coach cannot coach or assist on more than one team in the same division.   

·         Coaches will remain in a designated coach’s box. The coach’s box will not exceed the length of their bench 

  • Only the Head Coach may stand during the game unless their behavior becomes disruptive and at which time the official will request the coach to be seated.  
  • Assistant coaches may only stand if they are talking to their players or otherwise coaching.  Addressing officials must be done from a sitting position unless otherwise requested by the official.  
  • Any coach yelling at the officials (including those at the scorers table) will be asked to sit for the remainder of the game.  If at any time anyone on the bench, including but not limited to players, coaches, or attendants acts in an unsportsmanlike manner, the head coach will be REQUIRED to sit for the rest of the game. Actions would include taunting, yelling at the refs, etc

·         A coach who is ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct will at that time be asked to leave the school property and shall be suspended from all league functions until they attend a hearing before the board of directors. After such hearing a decision will be made to reinstate the coach.  

·         Coaches are responsible for damages done to school property due to the actions of anyone affiliated with their team. Violation of this rule may result in loss of practice time for the remaining of the season.



·         There are not tryouts, rather a draft per division where the players run through drills while coaches observe.  The goal is to see how players play as to balance teams and spread out the talent.

·         Each player must check in prior to entering the gym for draft evaluations. 

·         No participant will be allowed to participate in draft without proof of age and fulfilling financial responsibility, unless other arrangements have been made.

·         Any player not checked in or in attendance on draft time will be placed on a team by blind draw or hat pick. 

·         A waiting list may be established to place a player signing up after draft in order to maintain fair competition, balance rosters and make determination of player on a team.  Any late sign up will be placed on a team in the order of draft. 

·         The order of draft will be determined by a draw of the hat. 

·         A Returning player in the same division under the same coach may elect to remain on that coaches team and not be in the draft.

  • Returning coaches to the same age division may have returning players from the previous year that are not required to move up because of age therefore will not have to be drafted.
  • Coaches moving from one age group to another age group will draft a new team with only their child plus two being protected. The two protected would be a relative or returning player from the previous season’s roster.  Any team having less than 3 players will pick until the number of players is equal to the team with the least number of returning players.


 League Uniforms:  

·         Only League uniforms can be worn by players in all games.  League uniform is defined as the jersey and shorts provided by league. 

·         All jerseys are to be tucked in, unless designed to wear out.

·         All t-shirts worn under the  jersey must be of the same color/shade as the dominant color of the uniform unless the decision is made to wear a white t-shirt or color to match jersey ink. T-shirts are NOT required. All players shall wear the same color determined for game day.  NO exceptions! Players with different color will be asked to remove t-shirts.

·         There will be no jewelry of any kind permitted.




·         Practice times will be pre-assigned at a preseason coaches meeting.

·         One hour practice time will be assigned.

·         Players and coaches must not arrive more than five (5) minutes before their scheduled practice time and must leave immediately after practice is over.  No one should have to ask a team to exit the court.  If early arrival, wait outside not in the gym.

·         Practice may not be conducted on days that school is not in session for holiday or inclement weather.  Rutherford County School calendar will be observed.


 Gym usage: 

  • We are allowed to use the gym for practice and games and do not want to abuse this privilege, so we ask spectators, players, coaches and parents, please do not litter.
  • After game snacks should be distributed in the lobby and not in the gym area. No sport drinks may be brought in. Water only. 
  • There are trash cans in and outside the gym so anything brought into the gym should be discarded or taken out by whom brought it in.
  • Please help us keep the gym clean so we do not lose our gym privileges. 



  • At the conclusion of the game, all coaches and players will shake hands in a “sportsmanlike” manner. The penalty for refusing to comply is a game suspension for the “guilty” party.
  • If at any time anyone on the bench, including but not limited to players, coaches, or attendants acts in an unsportsmanlike manner, the head coach will be REQUIRED to sit for the rest of the game. Actions would include taunting, yelling at the refs, etc


 Inclement weather:

  • The league will make a decision of inclement weather by 6:00 am on game day
  • The website will be updated with inclement weather information by 6:00 am and early game coaches will be contacted.

Universal Sports League, Inc reserves the right to edit, remove and/or change any of the aforementioned rules at any time.  If a rule is not listed for modification the NFHS rule will apply.