Farmland Basketball League

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Farmland Basketball League Constitution

The Farmland Basketball League constitution was unanimously ratified by the Board of Directors November 7, 2008. Signing the constitution were: Nathan Arneal - North Bend; Luke Beerbohm - Blair; Russ Meyer - Dodge; Paul Poppe - Scribner-Snyder.

Article 1 – Name

The organization shall be called the Farmland Basketball League. The FBL will be made up of town team basketball teams primarily representing small towns in eastern Nebraska.

Article 2 – Officers

The officers of the League shall consist of Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner, and Team Mangers. One Team Manager per team will be elected by their team prior to the pre-season meeting. At the pre-season meeting, the Managers will elect a Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner. The Team Managers, including the Commissioner and Deputy Commissioner, shall make up the Board of Directors.

Article 3 - Duties of the Commissioner

The Commissioner will preside over all League meetings. He will set the schedule for the teams in the league, and arrange for officials for each game. He will enforce all rules set forth in this constitution and agreed upon by the member teams. He may also levy fines as adopted by the league.

Article 4 – Duties of the Deputy Commissioner

It shall be the duty of the Deputy Commissioner to assist the Commissioner and perform the duties of the Commissioner in his absence.

Article 5 – Duties of Team Managers

Each team shall be represented by a single Manager. Team Managers are responsible for organizing their individual teams and making sure their team meets the requirements and responsibilities of a FBL member team. Each manager will have a single vote in all League matters put to a vote. Managers are required to attend all meetings of the League. In the event a Manager is unable to attend a League meeting, he may send another member of his team to attend and vote in his stead, providing he let the Commissioner know in advance of the meeting.

Article 6 – Voting

During League votes, each team will have one vote, to be submitted by the Team Manager. Any amendments or changes to this constitution will require approval of at least two-thirds (2/3) of the member teams.

Article 7 – New teams

Towns wishing to join the League must submit an application to the Commissioner no later than October 1. A two-thirds vote of Team Managers is required to admit a new team.

Article 8 – Yearly membership fees

The membership fee will be determined by the Commissioner and be paid by each member team at the preseason league meeting. The fee will be determined by adding:
• The cost of officials for the end of the year tournament divided by the total number of teams in the League.
• The cost of a League trophy, to be presented to the tournament champion, divided by the total number of teams in the League.
• A $100 forfeit fee per team. (see article 9)

Article 9 – Forfeit fee, Forfeits

SECTION 1: Each team will pay a $100 forfeit fee included in their membership fee. If the team plays in all of its scheduled contests, including the tournament, it will be refunded the $100 forfeit fee following the season. Each team will have the option of rolling over the $100 instead of collecting the end-of-year refund, to cover their forfeit fee for the following season.

A team must have a minimum of five able and eligible players (as described in Article 10) ready to play at the appointed game time. If there are fewer than five players ready at game time, the team will be fined $20, to come out of its $100 forfeit fee.

If the team still does not have five eligible players after a waiting a period of ten minutes 20 minutes (amended 12/12/13) after the appointed starting time, a forfeit will be called. The forfeiting team will be fined an additional $30, for a total of $50. The League will take the $50 fine out of the team’s $100 forfeit fee and give it to the team forfeited against.

SECTION 2: Minimum players – As described above, a team must have five able and eligible players present to start a game. If they meet this requirement, no forfeit penalties will be levied for the situations described below:

If, due to injury, ejection, foul disqualification, or any other reason, a team is down to four players or fewer in the first half of the game, the game shall be declared over and the team with five or more players will be given a forfeit win.

If, due to injury, ejection, foul disqualification, or any other reason, a team is down to four players or fewer in the second half of the game, the game may continue as long as the game officials determine that the undermanned team has a legitimate chance to win the game.

SECTION 3: If a team knows it will not have enough players for a game days or weeks ahead of time, they may reschedule the game with approval and cooperation of the opposing team manager without incurring a forfeit. The latest this can be done is the Friday before the game. Once the weekend of the game comes - Saturday and Sunday - any team that determines it will not have enough players to play a game will forfeit the game in question and be subject to the forfeit fines and penalties described above and in Rule 16.4. (Adopted 11/17/18)

Article 10 – Eligible players, 15-man roster

Prior to the season each team will submit a roster of players not to exceed 15 players to the Commissioner. All players participating in games for said team must be listed on the 15-man roster.

SECTION 1: Players on each team’s 15-man roster must:

A) Be at least 21 years old.

B) Have a Player Eligibility and Information Form on file with the Commissioner. A new eligibility and information form must be completed for each player each season.

C) Have a permanent residence and live within the school district of their town’s local high school.
Class D exception: A town represented by a Class D high school basketball team according to NSAA classification shall be allowed two players that do not live in the local school district on its 15-man roster. These exception players must be graduates of the local high school.
Class C exception: A town represented by a Class C high school basketball team according to NSAA classification shall be allowed one player that does not live in the local school district on its 15-man roster. This exception player must be a graduate of the local high school.

Out-of-district players playing for their hometown under the Class D or C exceptions to Rule 10-1-C shall be referred to as Exception Players for the remainder of this document.

Towns represented by a Class B or larger school will receive no exceptions to Rule 10C. If a town is represented by more than one high school, the combined population of the two schools will be used to figure the town eligibility for exceptions under Rule 10-1-C.

If a player who lives within a school district represented by a Farmland Basketball League wishes to play for another FBL team in another town as an Exception Player, they must get the Manager of their local team to complete and sign a release form and submit it to the Commissioner.

D) Not be a member of a college basketball team
SEC. 2: A player who moves out of his town’s school district during the season may finish out the season playing for his team.

SEC. 3: Players may be added to a team’s 15-man roster up to the Thursday prior to the team’s second-to-last regular season game. Players added to a team’s 15-man roster during the season must submit an application in the form of a Player Eligibility and Information Form to the Commissioner. The Commissioner must receive the application by Thursday prior to the new player playing for their team. The team’s Manager must receive word from the Commissioner that the new player’s application has been received and accepted prior to the new player playing.

If a new player is being added to the Commissioner’s team, he will submit the application to the Deputy Commissioner for review and approval, according to the same rules in the preceding paragraph.

SEC. 4: Teams using ineligible players will not be eligible to play in the Playoffs and will lose $50 of the team’s Forfeit fee for each game the ineligible player plays, up to a maximum of $100.

Article 11: Officials

The FBL will use NSAA certified basketball officials when at all possible. A two-man officiating crew will be paid $100 $120 prior to the game. (Amended Nov. 2015)

If a forfeit is called prior to the game beginning according to Rule 9.1, the officials will be paid $50.

If a forfeit is called after the game has begun according to Rule 9.2, the officials will receive the entire payment of $120.

Article 13: Game rules

SECTION 1:All rules of basketball set forth by the National Federation of High Schools will be followed unless specified otherwise by this document.

SEC. 2: Exceptions to NFHS rules:

  1. Players will not be required to tuck in their jerseys
  2. Before the game begins, each team will designate as “Captain.” The Captain will be allowed the privileges given to a head coach under NFHS rules: i.e. use of a coaches’ box, ability to address the game officials in a respectful manner, etc. All other bench players must remain seated during play, according to NFHS rules.
  3. Half time will be six minutes long.
  4. Only eligible players in attendance will be listed in the scorebook. If a player shows up during the game, his name may be added to the scorebook without penalty, but only after checking in with the opposing Manager, according to Rule 15-4.
  5. Games will consist of two 20-minute halves (Adopted 11/15/12)


Article 14: Technical fouls and ejections

SECTION 1: Situations where a technical foul will be defined as “unsportsmanlike”  include, but are not limited to: disrespectful behavior toward another player, coach or official; a flagrant foul using unnecessary roughness or intent to injure; fighting or threatening to fight; use of foul language; intentionally hanging on the basket (except to prevent injury); dunking during pre-game or halftime warm-ups; refusing to leave the court in a timely manner after being ejected or fouling out; or any other action the game officials deem inappropriate.

Technical fouls that do not qualify as “unsportsmanlike” include: scorebook errors, calling a timeout when a team has none left; and accidentally having too many players on the court.

SEC. 2: Any player, manager or coach receiving an unsportsmanlike technical foul shall pay a $10 $20 $50 fine into the league’s general account before playing in another Farmland League game. (Amended Nov. 2015; Amended 2017)

SEC. 3: Anyone ejected from a Farmland Basketball League game will be suspended for the next league game. This one game suspension carries over to the next league year or season.

SEC. 4: Anyone ejected for a second time in any one FBL season will be suspended for the remainder of the season.

SEC. 5: Anyone receiving a cumulative total of four technical fouls in one season shall be suspended for the remainder of the season.

SEC. 6: Anyone who receives a season-long suspension according to rules 14-4 or 14-5, shall be required to appeal to the Board of Directors for reinstatement. A two-thirds vote is required to reinstate a suspended player. The Manager of the suspended player’s team shall not have a vote in his player’s reinstatement. The Board may also vote to extend the player’s suspension a number of games.

SEC. 7: Any Manager, Coach, player or team representative of any FBL team that conducts him or herself, whether during play or simply in attendance of a FBL game, in a way demeaning to the game of basketball, the Farmland Basketball League, representatives, players, officials of the FBL can be suspended, expelled and/or fined.

Article 15: Game day responsibilities

SECTION 1: Standard game time will be 6 p.m. Sunday. If game time needs to deviate from 6 p.m., the home team will inform the Commissioner and the Manager of the visiting team as soon as possible. If the time change is made less than one week prior to the scheduled game, the home team Manager will also be responsible for notifying the game officials of the change in start time.

SEC. 2: The home team will:

A. Have the gym open at least 30 minutes prior to the appointed game time.

B. Pay the officials before the game. Exception: In the event teams do not play an equal number of home games because of an odd number of games scheduled, the home team and away team will each be responsible for $60 of the officials’ pay in the final regular season game. This is so that all teams pay an equal amount for officials during the season.

C. Provide a game ball that meets the approval of both team Managers. If both Managers agree, a ball provided by the visiting team may be used.

D. Provide a person and scorebook to serve as the official scorekeeper.

E. Provide a person or persons to run the scoreboard and clock.

F. Have access to ice and ice bags for injuries.

SEC. 3: The home team will wear white and the visiting team will wear dark jerseys. All jerseys shall have numbers on both the front and back.

SEC. 4: Prior to the game, players will check in with the opposing Manager.
Each player will show the opposing Manager legal photo identification. The Manager will confirm that each opposing player is on the team’s 15-man roster of eligible players. If a player shows up after the start of the game, the player must wait until the end of the quarter to show their ID to the opposing manager, OR the team may use a time out to allow the player to check in with the opposing manager. All players participating in the game must be listed on the 15-man roster and check in with the opposing Manager. If a player does not have photo identification with him, he will not be allowed to play.

SEC. 5: Following the game both team Managers will look at the scorebook to verify its accuracy, with special attention to any technical fouls charged and that all players listed in the scorebook were in attendance.

SEC. 6: Following the game, the home Manager will send a report to the Commissioner that will include the following information:
• The final score
• Names of everyone that played in the game, for both teams.
• Scoring totals for all individual players
• Any unsportsmanlike technical fouls and to whom they were charged to.

If at all possible, the report should be submitted via e-mail the night of the game. The report must be filed by Monday morning at the latest.

Article 16: Playoffs

At the conclusion of the season, the top four six (amended 11/15/12) teams in the league standings will advance to the playoffs.

SECTION 1: If two teams are tied for the a playoff spot the following tiebreaker will be used:
1st- head to head competition
2nd- If the teams have identical records in head to head competition, the team with the largest victory margin in head to head competition will advance.
3rd- If the teams have equal victory margins, a coin flip will determine the final playoff spot.

SEC. 2: The playoff teams will be seeded by record. The highest seeded team in any playoff game will be the host team. When divisions are used, the division winners will receive the top two playoff seeds.

SEC. 3: Officials’ fees for playoff games will be paid by the league from membership fees collected prior to the season.

SEC. 4: Any team that forfeited a game during the season, according to Rules 9-1, 9-2, or 10-4, will not be eligible for the playoffs.

SEC. 5: The format of the playoffs shall be a single elimination tournament played on consecutive Sundays.

SEC. 6: To be eligible to play in the playoffs, a player must have played in two regular season games for his team.

Article 17: Post season

Following the season, a League MVP and a five-player all-league team will be determined by a vote of Team Managers. Manages cannot vote for someone on their own team.

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