Revised September, 2018

The Official Basketball Rules as adopted by the National Federation of State High School Associations have been adopted as the official Little Dribbler Playing Rules except as changed by the following special rules:

    Each player on the team roster who is present (10) minutes before the scheduled starting time of the game shall be required to play one complete quarter of play. In the event one team has one player less than its opponent, the team having the greater number of players shall draw at random from the opponents players. The player drawn shall be required to play two uninterrupted quarters of play.

    Note: It is the duty of the official scorer to enforce this rule on his own or upon notification by one of the team coaches. The official scorer must notify the team prior to the fourth quarter if one or more players have not qualified by playing one, complete,
    uninterrupted quarter for the penalty to be accessed.

    Penalty: Forfeit

    Clarification: One complete quarter is defined as playing one full, uninterrupted quarter. If a player is injured during the quarter and is unable to return for the remainder of the game, the player is considered qualified due to injury. However, if the player is able to return to play, the player must play one full, uninterrupted quarter in order to be qualified.

    Additionally: If a player fouls out of the game prior to completing one full, uninterrupted quarter, the player is considered qualified.
    ( The following rule is not applicable in the Major or Senior Divisions)
    Junior Division: A zone defense shall not be permitted at any time during the game.
    Penalty: Technical Foul. Repeated violations may result in forfeiture of the game.
    Comment: A zone defense penalty should be called when: A defensive player plays the ball as opposed to guarding an offensive player ("chasing the ball or A defensive player guards an area of the court as opposed to guarding an offensive player.

    Additionally: Whether or not a defensive player is 'zoning"will be a judgment call of the official. Officials are cautioned that the zone defense rule does not prohibit a defensive team from 'double teaming, " 'trapping, " 'Switching, " or 'Sagging. " The rule does not require the defensive player to remain within a certain distance of his offensive player, unless required by the National Federation Rules. (This rule does not require a team to guard the person throwing in the ball on an inbounds play.)

    The intent of the rule is to prevent the 'Chaser" defense, where one or more players chases the offensive player having the ball; and the traditional zone defense, where one or more defensive players ' primary responsibility is protecting an area of the court. Each of these situations is easily detected by anyone knowledgeable of basketball and should be strictly enforced. This rule is applicable in the frontcourt and backcourt.

    Coaches and players should not expect complete uniformity in the enforcement of this rule. No two officials will judge a situation exactly the same. A good team will be one that is coached to adapt its offense and defense according to how the officials are calling the game. This is true regarding how the officials call fouls, lane violations and traveling violations. It should be the same with the zone defense rule. 
    (This rule is not applicable in the Major or Senior Divisions)
    Junior Division: Defense in the backcourt is prohibited except during the fourth quarter of the game and any overtimes.

    This rule shall not be interpreted to allow a 'free" outlet pass starting a fast break, or to allow rolling the ball during the inbounds of the ball.

    Note: Defense in the backcourt is prohibited when the winning team is at least 20 points ahead of the other team. This rule applies to all local league games in all divisions. This rule will also be enforced in all age divisions division during all regional and national tournament games.

    Penalty: Technical Foul
    (This rule is not applicable in the Major or Senior Divisions)
    No isolation type offense involving one or two players will be permitted. Clearing the floor to one side for a one-on-one or two-on-two offense is prohibited. Teams must involve all of its players in the offensive pattern. This will be a judgment call of the official. Junior Division: This rule is applicable during the entire game including overtime play.

    Penalty: Technical Foul 
    American and National Leagues:
    Tournament rosters must consist of a minimum of ten (10) players and a maximum of twelve (12) players. Teams must play their first tournament game with a minimum of ten (10) players. After the first game, the team may consist of less than ten players in the case of player (s) injury, illness or school related conflict. Tournament teams may never consist of less than eight (8) players.

    Continental Leagues:
    Tournament All-Star Rosters must consist of a minimum of eight (8) players and a maximum of twelve (12) players. Teams must play their first tournament game with a minimum of eight (8) players. After the first game, the team may consist of less than eight players in the case of players 'injury, illness or school related conflict. Tournament All-Star teams may never consist of less than seven (7) players.

    All leagues:
    It is recommended that tournament teams select more than the minimum number of players. You must have the minimum number of players for your division in order to start a tournament. By selecting alternates, you avoid having to forfeit due to player injury or illness.

    Prior to each game, teams must designate which players will be alternates in the official score book. Alternates may play, but do not have to qualify. 
    In the Junior Division, the 3-second lane violation rule will be changed to a 5-second lane violation rule. In the Major and Senior divisions the rule will remain as 3- seconds. 
    In the Junior Division only, the free throw line shall be 13 6" from the plane of the face of the backboard. 
  8. BASKET:
    (Applicable to the Junior Division only) The basket shall be 8 6" from the floor. The basket for the major and senior divisions will be 10 'from the floor.
  9. BALL:
    The official Women S ball (size 6 28 %-29 in) shall be used in the following divisions: Girls Junior, Girls Major, Girls Senior and Junior Boys. The official Men S ball (size 7, 29 % -30 in.) will be used in the Boys Major and Senior divisions. 
    It is suggested that you have a light and dark uniform for your tournament teams. Shirts must have numbers on the FRONT and BACK. Player ' name, team name or sponsors name are allowed on the uniform. Numerals 0-5 are the only numerals to be used on uniforms. Numerals 6-9 are not allowed. 
  11. 3 - POINTRULE:
    There will be no 3-point rule in the Junior Division. The 3-point shot is allowed and will be counted in the Major and Senior divisions. 
  12. CLOCK:
    Quarters: Each quarter will be six (6) minutes. The clock is to be stopped on every official whistle and every dead ball. There is never a 'Running " clock during a Regional or National Tournament. A Running Clock is defined as running the clock continuously without stopping on the officials whistle.
    Time Outs: One (1) minute
    Half Time: Three (3) minutes
    Defense in the backcourt is prohibited when the winning team is at least 20 points ahead of the other team. This rule applies to all local league games in all divisions.This rule will also be enforced in all age divisions division during all Regional and National Tournament games.
    PENALTY: Technical Foul
  • Facilities: Each host league must provide adequate basketball facilities, at the dates and times scheduled for the tournament. In order to host a Junior League tournament you must provide the 8% ft. goals. 
  • Officials: The host league for such tournament games will provide two qualified officials currently in good standing with the official state organization for the area. Each official must be familiar with all special Little Dribblers playing rules including the official comment on Zone Defense. Tournament directors should meet with all officials to go over the Special Little Dribbler rules prior to starting the tournament. Hometown officials are discouraged from officiating games involving the host team. 
  • Double Elimination: All tournaments shall be double elimination until the championship game, unless stated otherwise. 
  • Special Playing Rules: All Special Little Dribblers Playing Rules are applicable to tournament competition. 
  • Housing and Meals: Team coaches both in state and out of state must make their own housing arrangements. Meals for the players are the responsibility of the team. 
  • Trophies: Individual trophies will be presented to the championship and runner-up teams at each level of tournament play. Trophies will be given to ten players and two alternates only. Medals or other awards cannot be substituted for trophies. 3rd place teams will now receive some type of award (trophy or medal) at the National Tournament Level. 
  • Awards: Individual awards such as 'most valuable player" and ill-tournament player" are not selected. 
  • Protests: The Official Tournament Director of each tournament shall decide any protests regarding tournament competition. Judgment calls of the official cannot be protested 
  • Appeals: Appeals of the Tournament Directors decision may be made with a $100 protest fee payable to the Tournament Director. 
  • Age documentation: Proof of age documents must accompany all players to each tournament. Only Original Birth Certificates or Certified Birth Certificates will be accepted Photocopies of any kind will not be accepted. The tournament director shall check all birth certificates prior to the teams 'first game. Teams will not be allowed to take the court until birth certificates have been checked. 
  • Hosting: Priority in hosting tournaments is given to the leagues who have been in Little Dribblers the longest and who have not recently hosted a tournament. Past experience in hosting tournaments (good or bad) is strongly considered in awarding the tournaments. 
  • Playing Rules: Playing Rules for tournament competition are the same as for local league play. These rules are set out in Special Little Dribblers Playing Rules 1-11, inclusive.
  • Host League: The host league must agree in writing to abide by these tournament rules. 
  • Playing Periods: Quarters will be six (6) minutes in length. 
  • Overtime: Each overtime period shall be two (2) minutes in length. 
  • Technical Fouls: Technical Fouls for Special Little Dribbler Playing Rules will not count as a player foul. It shall count as a team foul. All technical fouls shall be two shots. 
  • Time Outs: Each team shall be allowed three (3) full time outs only. One time out will be added for each overtime period. Any unused time outs from regulation play may be used during overtime play. 
  • Admission: LDB National Headquarters must approve Admission prices for Little Dribblers Regional and National tournaments. The tournament host shall notify headquarters in writing of their proposed admission fees. Tournament prices will be posted on the Little Dribblers Basketball, Inc. web site.