League Rules 2019

Crossroads Amateur Football League (CRAFL)

League Office

802 E Rio Grande

Victoria, Texas 77901

Phone (361) 827-6368

Fax (361) 582-4424

crafl@gmail.com

By-Laws

This body shall be known as the Crossroads Amateur Football League (known hereafter as CRAFL or league).  The CRAFL is a AAA league and will consist of the top teams in the state of Texas.  This body of business and its by-laws shall be duly filed as an LLC in the state of Texas.

Purpose

The purpose of the CRAFL is to provide a professional environment in which to ensure the successful growth and development of amateur and professional football players.  CRAFL does this by providing venues where the athlete is able to perform at their best and have the opportunity to be noticed by college and/or professional scouts in the sport of football.  The CRAFL would like to provide an environment where minor/alternative football will be viewed as a professional sport and expand into a viable choice in sports entertainment.  We also would like to create a business cooperative among “ELITE” team owners and afford every opportunity to build the value of their team brand.  CRAFL intends to be a professional entity that will protect the integrity of the teams, the league, and the sport of football.

The Board

The board will consist of 5 members for the current season and will maintain and enforce all by-laws that the league has to offer.  The board will help guide the league commissioner in holding the best AAA league in the state of Texas.

        Goals and Duties of the Board:

  1. Setup and maintain the league’s bank account and checkbook including maintaining a monthly balance sheet that includes a detailed description of expenses that the league accrues throughout the season and ensure said expenses are paid in a timely manner.
  2. Collect all fees and fines for the league.
  3. Keep owners informed of league decisions and/or changes.
  4. Conduct the day-to-day business affairs of the league.
  5. Have full authority to take any action they deem necessary to prevent or discourage any conduct (whether performed by a member, person, or group) which is not in the best interest of the league or which is necessary or desirable to preserve and protect both the integrity and the reputation of the league, its members, or the sport of football.
  6. Make known and enforce the provisions of these by-laws and rules of the league.
  7. Source teams and league products and services.
  8. Ideas for purchasing good deals.
  9. E-mail out a list of items needed to all other teams so that surplus items from other teams might be utilized.
  10. Keep, write up, and distribute (CRAFL) meeting minutes.
  11. Update league website as directed by the commissioner.
  12. Evaluate protested games.
  13. Make final decision on appeals and protested games in a timely manner.

League Fee and Deposit

The current season fee for CRAFL is $600 per team.  $300 of this fee is required as a deposit that will guarantee the team a spot in the appropriate division.  The remaining fee is due BEFORE the season’s opening game.  All fees are non-refundable and must be paid to CRAFL in the form of a credit card or money order.  No other form of payment is acceptable!

Note:  The purpose of this document is to state, as clearly as possible, the intention of the league to maintain an organized and safe season for each team.  The rules have been established to clearly guide each team in this endeavor; however, any and all rules are subject to be defined and applied by the board and/or commissioner as they see fit at any time.  The board and commissioner are the final say in any and all disputes or discrepancies. 

Rules of the Game

NCAA (MODIFIED)

The CRAFL will follow all rules and guidelines of the NCAA, with the modification, PLAYER MUST BE  DOWN BY CONTACT  for the current season.  All teams must be knowledgeable of these rules to ensure the safety of the players and coaches.  As is written in the rules of the NCAA, NO PLAYER SHALL BE COMPENSATED IN ANY FORM OR FASHION.  Teams may go to the NCAA website http://www.ncaapublications.com/p-4292-2012-and-2013-ncaa-football-rules-and-interpretations.aspx to obtain the rules and regulations.

Team Divisions

At present, the CRAFL has the following conferences:  North and South (AAA).  The divisions will be aligned as to create the most economically efficient and geographically conductive arrangements so as to minimize excessive burden on any one or group of teams.  The schedule within and among the divisions will be assembled based on a North/South conference scenario and utilize a best effort basis to minimize travel.  When the schedule is delivered, owners will sign game contracts. 

Owner’s Contract and Responsibilities

A team owner MUST sign a contract, provided by the league, before any new or existing team can participate in the CRAFL current season.  All contracts are valid for one (1) year.  By signing this contract, the owner is committing to abide by the following rules:

  1. Having a home field with a signed document from the local school or private stadium granting permission to use the field to play football.  A copy of this document MUST be submitted to the Board/Commissioner along with the contract.
  2. All league fees and fines will be paid on time as specified by the Board/Commissioner.
  3. An owner will be held responsible for the conduct of the team while participating in the CRAFL. (includes all players, coaches, and staff)
  4. Owner is responsible for ensuring the head coach follows all rules and regulations and enforces said rules during each game.
  5. A representative from the team will attend ALL league meetings unless excused by the league.
  6. Understand that if there is an issue with any game, there is a statute of limitations for complaints.  There is a window of one (1) week from the start time of said game.  No protest or complaint will be entertained after this time. 
  7. Owner, along with the head coach, will check the website (CRAFL.com) weekly to ensure the game scores were posted correctly and the team rankings are accurate.  Statute of limitations is one week from the start time of the game.  After this time, all rankings and scores are considered correct and will NOT be changed.  If a protest/complaint is submitted and is deemed valid by the Board and/or Commissioner, then a case will remain open until the board/commissioner makes a decision and finalizes the outcome of said case.
  8. Each team is required to maintain a website and/or Facebook page. 
  9. Code of Conduct-As an owner of a CRAFL team, you will be expected to sign a Code of Conduct contract along with your coaches, players, and staff (anyone dealing with the workings of your team).  The original signature must be returned to the league so it may remain on file for the current season.
  10. Owners are responsible for informing players and coaches of any information pertinent to their season and/or more specifically their games.  It is NOT the leagues responsibility to handle players. 
  11. Player complaints/issues should follow proper channels of 1. Coach, 2. Head Coach, 3. Owner, and (if absolutely necessary) 4. Board/Commissioner.
  12. Obscene language during the game by players, coaches, staff, and/or sideline guests will NOT be accepted. 
  13. Communication for league issues will be broadcast on the Facebook private page for owners.  Owners are required to check this page at least once a week to ensure timely notification.  It is NOT the leagues responsibility to ensure membership to this page.  Please contact the Commissioner to obtain membership.

If for any reason any of the league policies are broken after the signing of the contract, the owner understands that he/she, as well as any person associated with their organization, is now subject to fines, suspensions, and possible removal from the league as deemed necessary by the Board/Commissioner.  If a team is removed from the league during the current season and desires to re-enter the league the following season, then the team must be first in good standing with the league having paid all fees/penalties associated with the removal.  They must then reapply and be re-voted into the league by the team owners and Board.  Each owner accepts responsibility for his/her team and all issues regarding the team or players.

Code of Conduct

Every person involved with a team (coaches, players, staff, etc) will be required to sign a Code of Conduct.  Violations of the Code of Conduct will be subject to fines and/or suspensions that will be determined by the Board/Commissioner. 

Sportsmanship

The teams that are playing in our AAA league are considered the best in semi-pro football.  By saying this, it is important to show sportsmanship at ALL games.  Shaking hands, prayer, and helping one another are a few examples of what the league expects to see displayed by all involved.  Obscene language during the game by players, coaches, staff, and/or sideline guests will NOT be accepted. 

Social Media

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and all related websites are considered social media.  The league will not tolerate inappropriate behavior on the field nor will the league tolerate inappropriate behavior on social media sites.  If there are issues with rules, players, teams, coaches, games, or the league in general, then appropriate channels should be used to bring to light any issue.  “Blasting” on social media does nothing but display a lack of maturity.  The commissioner and board will monitor social media sites and will handle all reports of misconduct as they see fit including fines and suspensions if necessary. 

Home Team Responsibilities

Prior to the game:  The home team must send the visiting team all of the information regarding the upcoming game.  This includes but is not limited to…roster, kickoff time, field address, and what the home team will or will not be providing.  The information MUST be delivered by fax or email by the Tuesday prior to the game by 10:00pm.  **Reminder: Home team will wear the darker jersey, UNLESS HOME CHOOSE TO WEAR WHITE.

Game Day: 

  1. A coach or owner must meet the visiting team upon their arrival (2 hours before kickoff time). 
  2. Provide 40lbs of ice and a proper place to fill water coolers. 
  3. Provide a map showing the route to the nearest hospital along with the hospital’s contact info.
  4. The roster check will be performed by the head coaches 1 hour before kickoff (remember to have picture IDs ready for the roster check).
  5. Announcer, time clock keeper, officials, chain crew, security, and all field requirements must have been provided/met.
  6. It is highly recommended that the home team have an EMT or certified trainer available during the game.

Post Game:  The home team is responsible for reporting scores the next day by 1:00pm to scores@crafl.com

**Playoff Home Team Responsibilities-see Playoff section.

Visiting Team Responsibilities

Prior to the game:  The visiting team must send the home team their roster by the Tuesday prior to the game by 10:00pm.

**Reminder:  Visiting team will wear the lighter jersey, UNLESS HOME TEAM CHOOSES TO WEAR WHITE.

Game Day:  The visiting team must arrive 2 hours prior to kickoff time.  The roster check will be performed by the head coaches 1 hour before kickoff (remember to have picture IDs ready for the roster check).

Post Game:  The visiting team must clean all areas that were utilized by the team. 

**Playoff Visiting Team Responsibilities-see Playoff section.              

Uniforms

A player must be wearing the following to be eligible for play:

  1. Helmet
  2. Jersey representing home/away
  3. Shoulder pads
  4. Pants (including pads)
  5. Socks
  6. Appropriate footwear

Each team must have complete uniforms that include helmet, jersey (one light and one dark), pants, and socks for each player on the roster.  Uniforms of a set must be identical and contain numerals on front and back of each jersey (at least 8”).  The dark color jersey will designate home and the light color jersey will designate visitor.  All undergarments must match team colors as presented to the league (ie:  compression garments, under shirts, etc).  If undergarment does not match, then player will be given the opportunity to remove said garment or there will be consequences including but not limited to fines and possible suspension from the game.  Each and every player must match on game day or the players will NOT play.  Coaches, staff, and anyone on the sidelines must wear either a team polo shirt or t-shirt preferably designated with a team logo, but at least team colors.  Injured or inactive players standing on sidelines MUST wear jersey over street clothes and be dressed in a manner appropriate to represent the team.  Uniform issues must be brought to the board/commissioner’s attention no less than three (3) days prior to the game in question.  It is strongly recommended that players wear the proper equipment, but if players choose to not wear thigh or knee pads they are doing so at their own risk and the league will NOT be held responsible for injuries that occur as a result of not wearing these pads.

Insurance

Mandatory liability insurance for stadiums must be purchased by all teams.  It is highly recommended that players purchase supplemental insurance for themselves (the league has contacts for players to purchase this insurance from).  The CRAFL is not liable or responsible for any player that is injured in the CRAFL season.  The league office must also have a current copy of each team’s particular stadium contract or sign agreement to play.  All teams must have every player sign a medical release and waiver before they play and send the CRAFL a copy of that signed release/waiver document.

Field

Commissioners Note:  Remember that your field is a reflection of your team.  A well groomed field with proper facilities will present a more professional atmosphere that will make fans feel comfortable and will thereby encourage bigger crowds resulting in higher profile games.  The more positive attention a team receives, the greater the chance is for growth and upward movement in the sport of football.

  1. Field must be a standard NCAA regulation size—120 yards by 53.3 yards.
  2. Goal post must be the standard NCAA or traditional “H” design and made of the proper steel material.  GOAL POSTS MADE OF PVC PIPING ARE NOT ACCEPTABLE.
  3. All goal posts will have goal post pads on them.
  4. Field will be lined at least two (2) hours prior to kickoff and cleared of any debris.
  5. Field will have correct sideline markers and end zone pylons.  Orange cones are NOT acceptable and considered a safety hazard to players.
  6. Field will be, at minimum, a sports complex field.
  7. Must have seating for fans.
  8. If a field does not have lights then the league will approve the field only if BOTH teams have agreed to play and the home team has notified the visiting team and the league at least two (2) weeks prior to the game.
  9. Must have adequate facilities for teams to change.  Showers are optional.
  10. Adequate parking and restroom facilities for spectators.
  11. There must be at least a 5 yard buffer zone around the field starting from the out of bounds extending outward to keep fans from being near or on the field unless a natural barrier is already in place.

Game Day Operations

  1. Visiting team must arrive at the game field no later than two (2) hours before kickoff time.
  2. Roster check will be performed one (1) hour prior to kickoff.
  3. Visiting team sidelines must be defined before the visiting team arrives.
  4. Visiting team must be allowed access to the field two (2) hours prior to kickoff.
  5. Home team will have in place the announcer, time clock keeper, officials, chain crew, security and all other field requirements must be met.
  6. A team that is forty-five (45) minutes or more late past kickoff time will be fined an amount to be determined by the board/commissioner after reviewing the violation.  The game will be considered forfeit and possibly have an impact on playoff eligibility.  Possible exceptions to this rule include situations beyond the team’s control as long as the team has made every effort to keep the opposing team notified of the situation.  ie: bus breaking down, weather conditions, road hazards, etc.
  7. If an individual player is late they have until the start of the third (3rd) quarter before declared ineligible.  Player is still subject to roster check. 
  8. Game clock will have fifteen (15) minute quarters and a twenty (20) minute halftime break.
  9. It is highly recommended that the home team have an EMT or certified trainer available during the game.
  10. Sidelines are restricted to team personnel only and MUST be wearing proper attire and a visible identifying pass signifying which team they represent.
  11. Special guests and VIPs are allowed on the sidelines with proper identification (visible identifying pass), but not in the team area.
  12. All press should have a designated area and wear a pass.

Player Eligibility

  1. Must be 18 years of age or older by the date of the first official team practice. Players 17 of age must sign a waiver in order to play.
  2. Must be out of high school.
  3. Must have signed a league waiver and contract.  No player will play without these signed documents on file with the league.
  4. Must be in good standing with the league and team.  For example: all uniforms turned into previous teams, suspensions fulfilled, no monies owed previous teams, and has been released from previous team with release forms on file with the league.
  5. Cannot have two (2) contracts in the current year.  One (1) team = One (1) contract
  • Must have a legal ID present at all games for roster check reasons.  ID name must match name on roster.  No nicknames on IDs.  No ID = No playing.  NO EXCEPTIONS!
  • Must be in full uniform with same color helmet, pants, jersey, and socks in order to play.
  • If trying out for a new team this season, player must notify head coach of previous team(s) and when last played for said team(s).
  • Must have at least six (5) games played with a league team before being considered eligible for playoff or championship play.
  • If an individual player is late they have until the start of the third (3rd) quarter before declared ineligible.  Player is still subject to roster check with opposing team’s head coach before the start of third (3rd) quarter.
  • Players that leave the CRAFL to attend school or to play for another league during the season are not eligible until the start of the next season unless he returns before the roster cutoff date and pays all fines/fees.
  • If a player’s team cannot complete the season (team folds or leaves the league), then the player cannot play on another team unless it is before the roster cutoff date.  This is not to penalize the player, it is simply because rosters cannot be changed after the specified date.
  • Obscene language during the game by players, coaches, staff, and/or sideline guests will NOT be accepted.
  • THERE WILL BE A BLACKLIST OF ALL PLAYERS TERMED “TROUBLE MAKERS”.  THIS LIST WILL BE KEPT BY THE LEAGUE AND WILL BE PERMANENT.

Rosters

  1. Teams may have a sixty (63) player roster. NO PRACTICE SQUAD.
  2. All teams will have a roster emailed to the CRAFL by the date published by the board.  The roster cutoff will be the third (3rd) week of the season.  NO ACCEPTIONS!!  Missing the cutoff date will result in fines for each week not turned in.  After the second (2nd) week, the team will forfeit their games every week until turned in or team is released from league. The league will open rosters once again on the 7th week for teams that need players.
  3. Numbers and names on roster must match IDs.  Nicknames will NOT be accepted!
  4. Rosters must be sent to the opposing team no later than Tuesday at 10:00 pm prior to the game.
  5. Any roster not submitted to the opposing team in the timeline given will result in a fine.
  6. Teams using players that are not on the roster may be penalized to a severity of being removed from the league.
  7. NO PRACTICE SQUAD THIS SEASON DUE TO A 63 MAN ROSTER.
  8. Roster check-in is mandatory and will be performed at all games. 
  9. All roster check-ins will be emailed to ruben@CRAFL.com no later than Monday by 1:00 pm following the game.  Failure to send in the roster check-in could result in players not playing in the playoffs and/or championship games.
  10. All teams must have a minimum of twenty-five (20) players at each game.

Game Conduct

All fines listed are subject to change at the discretion of the board/commissioner.  The following are merely guidelines.  No player may return to play until all fines are paid in full.  The head referee may “call” a game at any time if he/she feels the continuation of play is dangerous in any way.

Basic Fines

  1. 1st Offense – $100.00 fine and one (1) game suspension
  2. 2nd Offense – $200.00 fine and two (2) game suspension
  3. 3rd Offense – Suspension of the season

Fighting

The league will NOT tolerate fighting and will handle each accusation of fighting thoroughly.  All photography and videography imagery will be collected and analyzed.  The aggressor will be the one fined and suspended with the upmost severity; however, if a player fights back there will be consequences as well.  The board/commissioner will determine when a fight is considered a “team fight”.  The instigating team will receive a forfeit and the board will determine the future of said team with the league.  All video and photographic submissions will be considered.

  1. 1st Offense – $300.00 fine and two (2) game suspension
  2. 2nd Offense – Suspension for remainder of season and possible expulsion from the league permanently.

Ejections

Ejections will be analyzed by the board to determine if discipline of the ejected player(s) is necessary.

Threats

Referees must be notified immediately if there are threats being made.  Referees must then notify the head coaches of both teams competing.  If threats continue, the player will be ejected and police called. Threatening a referee will result in a very serious fine including suspension. 

Taunting

Taunting of the opposing team, staff, and players will NOT be tolerated.  Both the instigator and responder can be ejected.  Referees may take action during the game and the league will analyze the situation and may take further action after the game. 

Injuries

If a player is injured, the procedure to follow is each healthy player is to return quietly to their huddle and remain quiet while the injured player is attended to.  Kneeling while the injured player is attended to is considered good sportsmanship and is encouraged.  Celebrating and raucous behavior that occurs while an injured player is being attended to shows no class and may result in league action.

Forfeits

Forfeit wins are not always equal to a true win.  Forfeit wins can have an effect on the rankings of a team when playoff positions are determined.

  1. Hosting team does not have a field to play on by Wednesday of the game week.
  2. Field is deemed unsafe by the head referee, the opposing team, and/or the commissioner.
  3. Field is not properly lined to league specifications and/or is missing such equipment as down markers, chains, or goal posts as required by the league.
  4. A team using an ineligible player.
  5. Team not meeting financial obligations to the league by the league mandated dates.
  6. Acts of nature, vehicle malfunction, and/or the school board overriding field usage for a specific game will not result in a penalization.  All attempts to reschedule will be made.
  7. If a forfeit occurs due to irresponsibility (including team absence), the team will be held responsible for financial losses occurred. 
  8. Forfeit scores will be 7-0.
  9. More than 2 forfeits may result in fines and/or removal from the league.

Tie Breakers

  1. The CRAFL will use a power point system first and for most.
  2. Head to Head.
  3. Points Allowed.
  4. Points Scored.
  5. Overall Record.

Game Balls

All game balls will be NCAA official balls or NFL.  Full leather and official weight and size.  Each team is responsible for bringing official balls to the game.  If a team does not have the official football as specified by the league rules, then a ball will have to be purchased from the opposing team.  All balls must be inspected by the head official before the game, at halftime, and periodically during the game.

Venue Change, Date Change, Time Change

In the event the host team or the visiting team is seeking a venue, date, or time change of a league scheduled game, the following process must happen:

  1.  Any schedule conflict should be worked out prior to the season starting between the two teams, commissioner, and head official.
  2. If a situation arises the opposing team, commissioner, and the head official are to be contacted no less than two (2) weeks before the scheduled contest in writing if the game needs to be moved to a new date and one (1) week if it is a time change but keeping the original date.
  3. In the event a final decision cannot be reached between the teams then the board will have the final say on the date and time change.  Any noncompliance by either team after a decision is made by the board can result in a forfeit.

Protested Games

  1. Games can be protested for administrative reasons.  (ex: illegal player)
  2. Games can be protested because of an official’s error IF it changes the outcome of the game.
  3. Improper marking of the field, player out of uniform, illegal ball, number of officials…are NOT reasons for a protest.  These examples should be addressed before the game starts.

Teams that wish to protest a game must first notify the head official before the game starts (if possible) and then notify the commissioner within 24 hours and explain the incident in writing.  Valid protests will be handled by the board and appropriate action will be taken.

Officials

  1.  All teams must use TASO officials for a game.
  2. All officials must understand that the CRAFL will use NCAA rules WITH ONE MODIFICATION.
  3. Each game will have a minimum of five (5) officials for  AAA leagues.
  4. Officials will fill out a game report and send it to the league in the event of any problems.
  5. Officials will need to report to the field one (1) hour before the game starts for pregame meeting.  It is important to have a dressing room available for the pregame meeting.  A representative from the hosting team needs to be present to assure the officials are not disturbed. 
  6. Officials will report to their locker room during halftime and the representative will again insure the officials are not disturbed.
  7. Players will NOT argue or threaten the officials at any time.
  8. The league has the option to assign officials without the knowledge of either team to ensure proper rotation to reduce the possibility of coercion. 

Championship

The championship game will be hosted by the league.  All teams will be responsible for a set number of tickets and will be required to return the money collected and all remaining tickets.  The winner of the championship game will receive a trophy for the team, championship rings, and a chance to host the all-star game at their stadium and keep all profits from the game.