Indoor Rules

DIVA adopts NAGVA Rules

Rules Updates starting Spring 2016

DIVA is very excited to announce that we are further aligning our playing rules and regulations with the USA Volleyball Domestic Competition Rulebook 2015-2017 and the North American Gay Volleyball Association (NAGVA) as we continue to stay in step with these organizations. Below are the major rule changes DIVA is adopting starting with Spring 2016:

 Libero: The Libero can now be the Team Captain, Game Captain or both. 

Net Faults: Contact with the net by a player between the antennae, during the action of playing the ball, is a fault.  The action of playing the ball includes (among others) take-off, hit (or attempt), blocking and landing. 

Score Sheet: DIVA has also adopting the new USA Volleyball Score sheet for this season.

Section 1: Conduct

1.1 DIVA members are expected to conduct themselves in a dignified and respectful manner at all league functions. The following list of acts may be justification for sanction.

  • Unsportsmanlike conduct, such as Physical Violence or Verbal or Written abuse against any player, spectator or referee. Jeering, taunting or inappropriate behavior against any team or player.
  • No show for League night play with no communication to captain.
  • No participation in team reffing or scorekeeping duties, including line judging.
  • Use of inappropriate language or comments that focus on someone's age, race, sex, religion, national origin, sexual orientation and gender identity.

1.2 The Board of Directors has the ability to sanction a member or a team for violations of the DIVA Procedures and Rules or for any activity deemed by the Board to be detrimental to the league. Member sanctions may include but are not limited to: verbal warning, written warning, suspension from league play and activities for a specified period of time, expulsion from the league, possible suspension from league sanctioned NAGVA Tournaments. Team sanctions may include but are not limited to: verbal warning, written warning, forfeiture of game(s), removal of the team from the season tournament, dissolution of the team. Members will have the right to respond to the board on any sanction given as per our Bylaws, reference, III - J

1.3 All members are required to follow the rules of the host facility.

1.4 No member shall participate in league play or officiate if he/she is under the influence of alcohol or illegal substance. A member in violation of this rule will be asked to leave the facility.

1.5 No member shall have alcoholic beverages or illegal substances on the property at any DIVA playing function. This includes the parking lots of the gyms. Members are expected to comply with all local, state and federal statutes.

1.6 Theft or destruction of DIVA property or the property of host facilities may result in a personal sanction by the DIVA Board of Directors.

1.7 Appropriate dress is required for members during league and tournament play. A members dress should not be offensive or make other members uncomfortable. Appropriate dress includes a shirt, shorts or pants, and athletic shoes. Hats, jewelry, and open-toed shoes are not allowed on the courts.

1.8 Members who are not current on their Season or Sub fees, will not be allowed to play in a league function until their membership has become current.

Section 2: League Configuration

2.1 Divisions

In an attempt to divide the many members of the organization into competitive groups based upon skill level, the Board of Directors has established a minimum of six (6) different divisions in the Dallas Independent Volleyball Association. These divisions are:

Recreational consists of players relatively new to the game of volleyball or those in the process of learning the basic skills of accurate serving, passing and doing three hits. This division will not run an offense. 

Intermediate will consist of the less experienced players who have learned the basic skills of serving, passing and doing three hits. This division will run an offense and players will learn the dynamics and strategies of a 6-2 offense. Players in this division will begin or have begun to "specialize" as setters or hitters.

Competitive will consist of the players who understand, but may not have completely mastered, the dynamics and strategies of both a 5-1 or 6-2 offense.

Advanced will consist of the more experienced players who consistently demonstrate advanced skills on both offense and defense and will be fully comfortable with a 5-1 or 6-2 offense.

Elite players are playing at the top level of the game and have excellent overall skills in every aspect of the game.

2.2 New Member Clinics

2.2.1 The Board of Directors shall schedule a series of new member clinics prior to the start of each season so that the Skills and Evaluation Committee can instruct and provide ratings to potential new members and returning members who do not have a current rating. The New Member Clinics are coordinated by the Vice President for Membership and the Chair of the Skills and Evaluations committee, in conjunction with the rest of the Board of Directors.

2.2.2 All players being evaluated at a new member clinic must complete a registration form online, including the liability waiver, before they participate in the clinic.

2.3 Player Ratings

Current Rating

2.3.1 Player ratings are only assigned by the Skills and Evaluations Committee. The Committee assigns members to one of the six (6) divisions based on their skill level. A "current rating" is an assignment that is made after a player has attended one of the new member clinics that are held prior to the Spring and Fall seasons. A "provisional rating" is a temporary rating assigned to a player who joins DIVA after the beginning of a season. These ratings are typically performed at DIVA's divisional practices during the course of the season. A player may join a team roster or serve as a substitute using a provisional rating or a current rating. A player must have a current rating in order to be assigned to a team through the pre-season draft. A player who participates in DIVA using a provisional rating must attend a new member clinic to obtain a current rating to participate in the draft. (A current or provisional rating is not required to serve as a substitute in the Open division since players of all ratings are eligible to serve as a substitute in that division.)

2.3.2 New members and returning members without current ratings shall be evaluated and assigned a current rating during the pre-season new member clinics or at a specified time determined by the Skills and Evaluation Committee. New evaluations may not be performed on a Friday night if season matches are scheduled.

2.3.3 Members who possess a current rating may request to be evaluated for a move to a higher division by completing a rerating form and submitting it to the Chair of the Skills and Evaluation Committee.

2.3.4 Player ratings expire if a player does not participate in the league, by joining a team roster or serving as a substitute on a team, for four (4) or more consecutive seasons of play (discounting summer) after their last rating. A player with an expired rating must attend a New Member's Clinic prior to joining a team roster, serving as a substitute on a team, or participating in a DIVA sponsored practice.

Requesting to be rerated to a higher or lower division

2.3.5 Each season the Board of Directors shall establish a deadline for the submission of rerating forms. Rerating forms submitted after the established deadline will not be accepted.

2.3.6 New ratings take effect the following season - including summer seasons. For example, players being reevaluated in Spring who move up to a new division will only be eligible for Summer leagues with that new division (if applicable).

2.4 Creation of Teams

2.4.1 The Board of Directors shall set a date for the season's draft.

2.4.2 Each member participating in the draft must be in good standing with the league and have a current rating.

2.4.3 Registration fees may not be refunded once a player has been assigned to a team in the draft. This rule applies in all cases including when a player relocates, is injured, or becomes ill and cannot complete the season.

2.4.4 The Board of Directors shall set the number of divisions and teams for each season. If necessary, the Board may set a maximum number of players for a division. If this happens, participation shall be on a first pay, first play basis. After the cap has been reached, interested members may be placed on a waiting list and play as substitutes until such time as a vacancy occurs or be refunded their fees.

2.4.5 A division should have a minimum of twenty-eight (28) playing members registered to be considered complete. At its discretion, the Board may choose to combine two divisions into one for a season or allow the division to compete with less than 4 teams. If this occurs, individuals maintain their previous rating for future seasons.

2.4.6 Captains - Division Representatives shall submit a list of potential captains to the Board of Directors for its review and approval. Players must have played the prior season in the division in which they seek to serve as a captain. The Board of Directors shall have the discretion to remove and appoint captains throughout the season. Attendance at the draft is mandatory for captains and the After Draft Party is strongly encouraged of the membership.

2.4.7 Draft - Teams will be chosen in draft format. The draft process is outlined in Section 7.

2.4.8 Six (6) people shall constitute a team. For all divisions, a maximum of seven (7) players will be assigned to a team at the draft.

2.5 Maintenance of Teams

2.5.1 If an individual joins a division after the draft has taken place, the member will be assigned to a team using the process outlined in Section 7.

2.5.2 No additions may be made to a team's roster after midnight on the second to last Friday of league play. (Example: week 11 of a 12 week season)

2.5.3 To be eligible to play for a team in the season tournament a player must have played on the team as a roster player during at least one night of league play.

2.5.4 If, for any reason, the Board disbands a team during season play, continuing roster players (from the disbanded team) will be placed on teams using the procedures for individuals joining after the season draft. (See DIVA rule 2.5.1 above.)

2.5.5 A player is expected, whenever possible, to contact their captain prior to being absent from Friday night league play. If a player is absent for three (3) nights of league play, and the captain feels that each absence was not communicated and not for a valid reason, the captain may submit a written request to their Division Representative that the player be removed from the team. The individual in question shall be notified by the Division Representative prior to any action being taken to present his/her view. Once a player has been removed from a team, that team would then be eligible to add an additional member. The placement of a new member on that team shall be determined by the established order of selection. (See DIVA Rule 2.5.1 above.)

2.5.6 A player that is removed from a team's roster after the draft, for any reason other than injury, may not participate in the league as a substitute or join another team for the remainder of the season. Registration fees are never refunded to a player once the player is added to a team's roster.

2.5.7 A player that is removed from a team's roster after the draft, due to injury, may petition the board to return to the league as a roster substitute during the current season. Registration fees are never refunded to a player once the player is added to a team's roster.

Section 3: Officiating and Scorekeeping

3.1 Each team captain is responsible for officiating assigned matches according to the schedule provided by the Vice President for Administration.

3.2 Captains will be responsible for providing the following: a certified Up (1st) referee, a certified Down (2nd) referee, two (2) line judges, a certified scorekeeper, and one assistant scorekeeper. A team may ask other league members to assist if they are short players. A team that fails to complete its assigned officiating duties may receive a team sanction. (See DIVA Rules and Procedures 1.2 for information regarding team sanctions.)

3.3 The officiating team is responsible for maintaining the following 45 minute time schedule for their assigned match:

  • A three (3) minute warm up period
  • A two (2) minute period to set the teams up for the match
  • Forty (40) minutes of match play

3.4 If both playing captains agree, a scheduled 1st referee may be replaced by another certified referee. It is the responsibility of the playing captains to find the replacement referee.

3.5 Certification for 1st referees, 2nd referees, and scorekeepers may be acquired by attending a DIVA certification clinic or by providing proof to the Vice President of Administration of current certification through NAGVA (North American Gay Volleyball Association) or USA Volleyball. DIVA certifications expire on December 31st of each year.

3.6 The Scorekeeper is responsible for ensuring that the Tally sheet is accurate and complete with all the required signatures. It the responsibility of the captains of the playing teams to check the accuracy of the tally sheet information (the winning and losing team and the game scores) before signing.

Section 4: Equipment

4.1 The DIVA Board of Directors will set the courts up for play each Friday night. The initial officiating team shall have the responsibility for ensuring the court is ready for play no later than ten (10) minutes prior to the start of the first match.

4.2 The losing team of the evening's last game played on each court shall have responsibility for clearing the score table and taking all equipment (including the game ball) to the DIVA supply table. If the game ends in a tie, both teams shall be responsible.

Section 5: Protests

5.1 Only protests concerning rules or interpretation of rules are allowed. As in USAV, judgment calls are not subject to protest.

5.2 If a captain wishes to file a protest he/she must:

  1. Notify the scorekeeper of his/her desire to file a protest
  2. Write "Protest" in the captain signature line of the tally sheet
  3. Provide a written statement of protest with the Vice President of Administration within 48 hours after the end of the match. The written statement should include the details of what occurred and what rule the captain feels was misinterpreted or misapplied.

5.3 If a protest is filed regarding a match not starting on time, the Protesting Captain must notify the 1st Referee before the match begins and the 1st Referee shall instruct the Scorekeeper to write the start time of the first game down on the score sheet. For protests regarding more than two minutes between games, the Scorekeeper must write the end time of the first game and start time of the second game down on the score sheet.

5.4 The ruling on the protest will be presented within two (2) weeks from the time the protest is filed.

Section 6: DIVA (non-USAV) Rules of Play

6.1 General Rules

6.1.1 Matches are timed and consist of 2 sets (games). There is a cap of 27 in the first set and no cap in the second set. Matches are played until completion or time runs out.

6.1.2 If the signal for the end of match time is sounded during the playing of a point the game continues until the point is over. (A point is considered to be in progress as soon as the referee beckons for the serve.)

6.1.3 Friday Night League matches are timed and limited to 45 minutes. Teams will have three minutes of shared court time to warm up. Teams cannot request a time out during the final two minutes of the match.

6.1.4 Teams are not required to wear matching uniforms, and are not required to wear numbers on their shirts. Players must wear a shirt, shorts(pants are acceptable) and athletic shoes while playing on the volleyball court. 

6.2 Playing with a Libero

6.2.1 A libero, or specialized back row player, may be used in all divisions. . The libero is not required to wear a uniform that contrasts the rest of the team. If first referee requests it, designated mesh libero jerseys are available at the league table and should be worn by the libero for the duration of the match. 

6.2.2 A libero is allowed to serve, but for only one position.

6.2.3 DIVA will follow all other USAV Libero Rules.

6.3 Playing With Less Than 6 Players

6.3.1 Teams must have at least four (4) players present at the start of each game. The four players may consist of four roster players, or three roster players and at least one substitute. (A maximum of two (2) substitutes may be used by a team at any one time.) Game time is five minutes after the match is scheduled to begin (7:35 for a 7:30 match). If the required four players are not present the team will be forced to forfeit the first game. The team will then have ten (10) additional minutes (until 7:45 for a 7:30 match) before they must forfeit the second game of the match.

6.3.2 DIVA allows teams to compete in league play with less than six players on the court. The players that are present are assigned a position on the lineup sheet for the team and the empty position or positions are labeled as "Hole". The players and the hole(s) rotate as normal with each change of serve. When a "hole" rotates into the serving position a point is scored for the opposing team and the serve returns to the opposing team's next server. During play a team playing with a hole may replace the hole by substituting in a late arriving roster player or a registered Substitute player.

6.3.3 When competing teams are both playing with less than six players the captains may, prior to beginning play for each game, agree to "play without a hole". When this happens each team will complete its lineup sheet leaving out the eliminated hole. If both teams have two players missing they may agree to eliminate both holes. If one team is missing one player and the other team is missing two players then only one hole may be eliminated and the team missing two players must include one hole on its lineup sheet. Once a hole has been eliminated and play has begun it is not possible to replace the hole with a late arriving roster player of a registered substitute in that game.

6.4 Use of a Substitute Player

6.4.1 For the purposes of this section a "substitute" is defined as:

  1. A non-roster player who is asked to play on a team during league play when the team will have less than six members present.
  2. A roster player from another team who is not scheduled to play or referee a match at the time of the needed substitution, when the team will have less than six members present.

6.4.2 A substitute must register each season prior to playing for a team.

6.4.3 A player must have a current rating with DIVA in order to serve as a substitute in any division other than the Open division.

6.4.4 Individuals may only serve as a substitute in the division of their current rating or a higher division. (Example: A player with a current rating of Competitive may substitute in the Competitive, Advanced, Elite divisions, but not in the Intermediate or Recreational divisions.)

6.4.5 Teams must have at least three (3) roster players present at the start of each set (game) in order to use a substitute.

6.4.6 No more than two (2) substitutes may play on a team during any one night of play. An exception to this rule is allowed if a substitute player is forced to withdraw from play due to injury.

6.4.7 A team may not use the same non-roster substitute on more than three (3) nights of league play during the same season. A team may not use the same roster substitute on more than two (2) nights of league play during the same season.

6.4.8 A player may only serve as a substitute on one team per night of league play.

6.4.9 If a team is using a non-roster substitute and one of their roster players shows up, the team must keep the non-roster substitute for the evening and work all players in during the course of play. If the substitute is a roster player from another team, at the completion of game(set), they will be removed from play for duration of game. If roster player shows up during the during the middle of game(set). The Captain must decide to either substitute the roster substitute with their roster player or continue playing with the roster substitute.

6.4.10 Substitutes may not be used in the end of season tournament.

6.4.11 Team captains are responsible for finding substitutes who are eligible for their division, collecting the $10 substitute fee from the non-roster substitute, completing the substitute envelope, and placing the substitute money and envelope in the locked box located at the DIVA table, prior to start of play. There is no fee for a roster substitute. Team captains and scorekeeping team are responsible for insuring both non-roster and roster substitutes are noted on the Tally Sheet.

6.4.12 Violation of any of the above stated rules regarding substitutes may result in the forfeiture of any game in which the illegal substitute participated.

7. Draft Procedure and Considerations

7.1 Considerations

1. Only players registered by the registration deadline will be eligible to be selected in the draft. 

2. If captains are not able to participate in the draft they may select a proxy (Division reps are ineligible to serve as proxies for captains in their own division). 

3. Player member cards will be posted at the front of the draft room with the name and photo provided by the player. Each player is responsible for their own pictures on their profile. 

4. A list of registered players with their primary and secondary positions will be provided to captains. This information is self-reported by players (or those who created their accounts) so DIVA does not vouch for skill or ability for those positions. Players are not guaranteed those positions and do not have to be drafted for those positions in particular. It is merely meant as a helpful resource. 

7.2 Draft Process

1. As captains enter the draft room they will randomly select a number. This number becomes their team number for the season and the order in which they pick in the draft. 

2. Captains will sit in the order of their numbers for the draft.

3. The draft will start with the first captain selecting a player from the display and handing it to the board member(s) recording the draft. At the same time the next captain will queue up at the board to increase the efficiency of the process. They may not select or approach the board before the previous captain has selected their player. 

4. The draft will continue in this pattern from captain 1 through the final captain. Once the final captain has made their selection, they will choose again and the draft will continue in reverse order. For example, if there are 12 total captains, Captain 12 will select their two players at the same time. It will then move to Captain 11 and then continue back to Captain 1. 

5. The draft will continue in this fashion until: 

a. Full divisions resulting in even teams. The draft will continue until all players have been drafted onto their respective teams. There will be no change in the process throughout the draft. 

b. Incomplete division resulting in uneven teams (e.g., some teams of 6 and some teams of 7 players). Once all teams have 6 players the original draft process will stop. The remaining players will be drafted by Captains 1 through the number of remaining players in reverse order. For example, if there are 12 teams but only 7 remaining players then Captain 7 will draft the first player from the remaining 7. Captain 6 will draft the next player, Captain 5 the following player, and so on until Captain 1 has the last player remaining in the draft. 

6. Captains will double-check their rosters with the board member recording teams. 

7.3 Post Draft Information 

1. Captains are not allowed to reveal their rosters to anyone until rosters have been posted at the draft party. This is true even if captains do not plan on attending the draft party. 

2. Once rosters have been posted at the party, captains are free to and encouraged to communicate with their teams. 

3. Within the first few days of the week, team rosters will be made available through the online portal so captains and teams may communicate with each other electronically. 

7.4 Late Registrants

1. Players who register late (and are evaluated at a practice should they not have a rating) and pay the associated late registration fees will be eligible to join teams based on random selection. 

2. At a practice, the division rep or a board member serving as proxy for them will use a random draw method (e.g., picking team numbers from a bag, coin flip (for two teams), etc) to identify which if the non-capped teams the player will be added to. 

a. It is highly encouraged for all captains potentially affected to be present during this draw but it is not required. 

b. A non-affected captain witness (other captain, player, or board member) is required. 

c. If there are teams that do not have at least 6 members on their team, they will receive priority in late registrations added. If there is only one team with 5 players, they will automatically receive the late registrant.  

Property of Dallas Independent Volleyball Association. Any use of materials presented on this site, without written consent, is strictly prohibited. Copyright© 2014 Dallas Independent Volleyball Association (DIVA) Created and approved February 21,2014 Ruben Viveros, President.

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