Basketball Rules

2022-23 Rules


NEW 2022-23 Divisions

Under 7 - as of June 1, 2022 (1st Grade Division)

Under 8 - as of June 1, 2022 (2nd Grade Division)

Under 9 - as of June 1, 2022 (3rd Grade Division)

Under 10 - as of June 1, 2022 (4th Grade Division)

Under 11 - as of June 1, 2022 (5th Grade Division)

Under 12 - as of June 1, 2022 (6th Grade Division)
Under 14 - players ages 12 & 13, (7th & 8th Grade) on June 1, 2021

Under 16 - players ages 14 &15, (9th & 10th Grade) on June 1, 2021
Under 18 - players ages 16 & 17, (11th & 12th Grade) on June 1, 2021

U14-U18 Divisions
D1 - School teams and older players (10-year-olds playing U10s)
D2 - lower age players new to League (8-year-olds playing U10s)


Goal Heights   

8.5 Feet - U8/U10 Divisions      
10 Feet - U12/U14/U16/U18 Divisions    


Ball Size       

27.5" - U8 Boys and Girls 

28.5” - Boys U10/U12 & Girls U10 - U18

29.5” - Boys U14 - U18

Length of Games 

Under 8 & Under 10 - (4) 8-minute quarters

Under 12 & Under 14 - (4) 9-minute quarters

Under 16 & Under 18 - (2) 20-minute halves

TIMEOUTS - (2) 60-second timeouts per half, DO NOT carry over to 2nd half

CLOCK: Running Clock (Last Minute of 4th Quarter & 2nd-Half of Regulation, exception-when point rules is applied) 

The Game

  • 5 v 5, NO OVERTIME 

  • Teams shoot on goals OPPOSITE of their bench for 1st Half.

  • Halftime is 4-minutes  

  • Halftime – teams switch goals

  • Halftime - U8 League - Players will shoot 1 Free-throw, EQUAL # OF SHOTS

  • 3-Point Goals (U12-U18 Leagues ONLY)

  • U8-U12 Point Rule – teams with a 15-point lead are restricted in the 3-Point Arc

  • U14-U18 Point Rule – teams with a 20-point lead are restricted in the 3-Point Arc

  • 3-Second Lane Violation – U10-U18 Leagues

  • JERSEY: Home team is White or Light, Guest team is Dark​​

The Start of Play

  • 1st possession is determined by a Jump Ball at center court

  • Alternate possessions at the start of the second half from Possession Arrow

  • Teams will switch goals after halftime

  • Must have 4 players to start the game

  • If one team does not have (5) players, after the scheduled game time, and a
    5-Minute Grace Period, the game will be declared a FORFEIT

  • If the game is declared a FOREFIT, teams will play a scrimmage

  • Forfeit Scrimmages (two 15-minute halves) will use assigned officials and end 15-minutes prior to the start of the next game


The Head Coach

  • The Head Coach MUST meet with officials and submit Scoresheets at the pre-game meeting and is responsible for all behavior issues related to players and fans

  • A maximum of two (2) coaches in the bench area.  However, only one (1) standing coach at a time. 

  • After one (1) warning, a technical foul may be given

  • Bench Technical – by either a player or an assistant coach will result in the loss of Coaching Box privileges for the Head Coach

  • No Coaches are allowed under the backboard area when the ball is in play

  • Coaches are responsible for seeing that his/her bench area is cleaned after each game


  • The suggested maximum number on each roster is 10

  • Every player (if physically able) should play at least 50% of the game

  • ESCRA recommends reversible Jerseys (with both light/dark colors).

  • WHITE T-SHIRTS are the preferred color for undergarments.

  • Church/School/Organization Name must be on the Uniform.

  • Legal Numbers MUST be on the front and back. 

  • Uniforms must match and have numbers of 1-5, 11-15, or 21-25.

  • The following numbers (6, 7, 8, or 9) are NOT to be used in any combination.


General Safety

  • Necklaces, watches, jewelry, earrings nor any pierced body parts on either boys or girls is PROHIBITED. 


Fouls and Technicals

  • Offensive and Defensive fouls may be called on any player. 

  • The referee should briefly explain all infractions.

  • Technical Fouls may be called on any player, coach, or fan.

  • Player Disqualification - Five (5) fouls and then removal from the game.  Players remain as bench personnel, not permitted to leave.

  • Coach Ejection - Two (2) technical fouls and removal from the facility within 1-minute after ejection or the game will be canceled.

  • Direct Technicals for unsportsmanlike actions:  3 free throws and possession.

  • Indirect Technicals for rules infractions: 2 free throws and possession.



  • To enter the game, players check-in at the Scorer’s Table and kneel at the X.

  • When the whistle is blown for a dead-ball, subs will be waived in by the official.

  • The scorekeeper will notify the officials of substitutes with a short horn when the ball is not in play.

  • If a player is injured and needs to come out of the game, an official may call a time-out to stop the clock.  Play will resume at the point of interruption on all inbound plays or rebounds after notification is made by the official to restart the clock.


The Score

  • The score will be kept at each game including fouls and technical fouls

  • HOWEVER, no league standings will be kept 

  • ESCRA is a Developmental League focusing on fun, fellowship, and instruction


Pressing and Defense

  • U8 Defense – teams can ONLY play the ball when it crosses 3-Point Arc

  • U10 Defense – teams can ONLY play the ball when it crosses Half-court

  • U12/18 Defense – teams can full-court press

  • After the 15-Point & 20-Point Rules, Defense outside of 3-point Arc is an Illegal Defense.



  • Two (2) officials will be assigned by ESCRA to enforce the rules of the game with
    instruction, fun, fairness, and safety in mind.

  • The officials have complete administration of the game. 

  • One (1) warning will be given to the Head Coach in the event of fan issues.

  • In the event of an unruly fan, the result is an Indirect Technical on their Head Coach

  • Please inform the Site Director and YOUR Athletic Director of any issues.


Mission Statement

Our mission is to provide and promote recreation between churches in the Shelby County area in a Christ-honoring environment.


Our Purpose

  • Provide athletic competition for all ages.

  • Promote an environment that will assure a spirit of fair play and sportsmanship.

  • Promote participation in team sports.

  • Encourage fellowship that honors Jesus Christ.


Age/Grade Exemptions

  • In special circumstances, an exemption may be granted for a player to play in an age group for which he/she is too old.

  • Please submit the online Exemption Request at

  • The request must be made by the team’s Recreation Director prior to Nov. 15.

  • Churches will be notified concerning the status of the exemption, approved/denied

  • Approvals can be revoked if the exemption information is found to be false.


Playing on More Than One Team

Players are not allowed to play on more than one team within the same sports season  Anyone playing for his/her school, playing on a competitive team, or playing in another league/association within the same sports season may not play in the ESCRA league


Score Sheets

Score sheets (Excel format) are available online at for coaches to complete prior to their games.  Please include your Church, Age Division, Player’s first and last names and turn them into the Scorekeeper prior to tip-off.


Inclement Weather Number

In the case of dangerous driving conditions due to Winter Weather, coaches should call (901) 336-RAIN to check if any gyms are closed and games canceled.  Please call this line each Saturday after 8:00 am and 3:00 weeknights for updates.


Canceling a Game

  • The COST OF OFFICIALS will not be covered by ESCRA.

  • Play all games as scheduled.

  • Any games canceled games will NOT be rescheduled by the ESCRA.

  • PROTOCOL: Head Coach informs their Director, who informs the League


The Bench (assistant coaches)

  • Only ONE (1) coach is allowed to stand and direct play during a game.

  • Coaches’ Box is identified as the area from the bench to the sidelines with 7 chairs in length.  Substitute players must remain seated.

  • Teams must have Adult Coaches (25 years old).  Exemptions Request may be submitted

  • A coach receiving (2) Direct Technicals in a game will be ejected from the facility.

  • A coach receiving (3) Direct Technicals in a season will be reviewed by the ESCRA Board of Directors to determine the eligibility for coaching in future ESCRA games.


Clock Operators / Scorekeepers

The League pays for clock operators and scorekeepers.  Location Managers may us 2 people for each game.  Scorekeepers must make sure that the coaches submit a Score Sheet including Church name, Division, and player numbers, first and last names.



  • Games begin with PRAYER

  • Coaches must in good faith keep up with the 50% play rule or face disciplinary actions.

  • Modified TSSAA Rules apply to all games, NO overtimes.



  • Free Throws: One & One, after 7 team fouls; Two after 10 team fouls.

(Revised: 12/1/2021)