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News Release

New Lineup Procedures Approved in High School Volleyball


INDIANAPOLIS, IN (February 9, 2016) — The process for submitting lineups in high school volleyball has been revised for the 2016-17 season.

In addition to the revision in Rule 7-1-4 regarding lineup procedures, the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Volleyball Rules Committee recommended eight other rules changes at its January 4-6 meeting in Indianapolis. All rules changes were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.

Following each set, coaches will be required to submit a numeric lineup to the scorer before one minute remains in the timed interval – or intermission when used. Rule 7-1-4 now states that if a player’s number is duplicated in more than one starting position (including the libero), the clerical error shall be corrected by either changing the libero’s number to another legal number or by substituting a player into that starting position with a legal number.

 “The committee wanted to provide greater clarity in the wording and organization of Rule 7-1-4,” said Becky Oakes, NFHS director of sports and liaison to the Volleyball Rules Committee. “In addition to correcting clerical errors as addressed within the rule, the libero is now included as a possible option when a player’s number is listed twice.”

An emphasis on rule clarity was also applied to Rule 11-2 Penalty 2, which the committee altered to offer consistency in the application of unnecessary delay penalties. Oakes said if a team has used its allotted number of time-outs and requests a third time-out, “the resulting penalty would be an unnecessary delay and no longer carry the automatic loss of rally point for the opponent.”

The penalty of unnecessary delay for the request of a third or subsequent time-out can be applied regardless of whether the second referee acknowledged it with a whistle and time-out signal.

Another change approved by the committee includes “a new procedure in protocol” used by the first referee to begin the prematch conference, as is covered by Rule 5-4-1h. When the referee sounds a double whistle and raises a coin in the air, each team’s head coach and captain(s) are expected to meet at the official’s table.

“The committee believes this will eliminate the need to track down those individuals who are required to participate in the prematch conference,” Oakes said. “It will assist the officials in consistently and efficiently getting the conference started and beginning the match.”

The committee also revised Rule 11-5-1, which clarifies that if a team is going to use an intermission between sets two and three, it can only be used for promotional or special recognition activities and not solely as an extended time interval.

A complete listing of all rules changes will be available soon on the NFHS website at Click on “Activities & Sports” at the top of the home page, and select “Volleyball.”

According to the 2014-15 NFHS High School Athletics Participation Survey, volleyball is the second-most popular sport for girls with 432,176 participants. A total of 15,619 schools offered girls volleyball in 2014-15 and 2,287 schools offered boys volleyball.

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About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)

The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and performing arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level. Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 19,500 high schools and 12 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7.8 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; offers online publications and services for high school coaches and officials; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, speech and debate coaches, and music adjudicators; serves as the national source for interscholastic coach training; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS website at