Dodgeball Rules

Any intramural policies not mentioned here may be found in the Intramural Handbook. Unless specifically mentioned below, Intramural play is governed by International Dodgeball Association rules. By participating in Intramural Sports, the participant agrees to abide by all Intramural rules and policies.

You may suffer physical and/or mental injury from participating in Intramural Sports. There are certain risks of injury that are inherent to participation in sports and recreational activities. These types of injuries may be minor or serious and may result from the actions or inactions of themselves or others. By choosing to participate in Intramural Sports, you do so at your own risk. It is understood that most activities require a certain level of fitness and health, and that each person has a different capacity for participating in these activities. Participants of Intramural Sports are highly encouraged to have a physical examination and procure health insurance prior to play. UC Campus Recreation does not provide health insurance.

Intramural Supervisors undergo concussion recognition training. In the instance a participant is exhibiting any signs or symptoms of a concussion as a result of a head injury sustained during intramural play, he or she will be removed from the activity. This individual must provide a physician’s note clearing the individual to play by a specific date. This note may be e-mailed to or faxed to 513-556-0601.


Following each game, teams will receive a sportsmanship rating between 0.0 and 4.0.


In order to qualify for playoffs, teams must obtain a 3.0 or higher sportsmanship average during the regular season based on the table below:

Sportmanship Rating
Score Player & Team Behavior   Penalty
4.0 Always respectful to officials and opposing team.
No complaining or arguing.
No unsportsmanlike penalties.
3.0 Usually respectful to officials and opposing team.
Minimal arguing or complaining about officials.
Maximum one (1) unsportsmanlike penalty.
2.0 Moderately disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Moderate arguing or complaints about officials.
Multiple unsportsmanlike penalties OR Maximum one (1) ejected player
1.0 Frequently disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Frequent arguing or complaints about officials.
Any contact or provocation of officials.
Multiple ejected players or one (1) player involved in a fight.
0.0 Player(s) out of control.
Excessively disrespectful to officials and/or opposing team.
Excessive arguing or complaints about officials.*
Multiple players involved in a fight. Destruction or abuse of property.

* A team that receives a "0" rating will be suspended from competition until its captain meets with the Assistant Director or Coordinator of Intramural Sports. The team may be removed from competition.


In addition to team ratings, any unsportsmanlike actions may be forwarded to Judicial Affairs and may include but is not limited to revocation of Intramural Sports and/or Campus Recreation privileges.


To be eligible for intramural sports, each player must possess an active membership to the University of Cincinnati Campus Recreation Center AND be a current University of Cincinnati student (enrolled in at least one (1) credit hour), faculty, or staff member.


Uptown, full-time UC students receive a Campus Recreation membership through full payment of the Campus Life Fee. All other populations will need to purchase a membership in order to be eligible to play.


Participants may participate on one (1) mixed gender and one (1) non-mixed gender team (i.e. men's, women's, open, Fraternity, Sorority) per sport, per season. Substituting for another team in the same league is prohibited.


Every game, each participant must check in with the intramural official with a valid Bearcat card.


Intramural particpants must additionally meet all requirements of Section 3.4:


Teams are limited to two (2) competitive club sport participant (in the same or similar sport) on its roster.


Current varsity athletes and professional athletes are not allowed to play on an intramural team of the same or similar sport as their varsity sport.


Former varsity athletes must sit out 365 days from last appearing on a varsity roster to be eligible to play in the same or similar sport as their varsity sport. Teams are allowed one (1) former varsity athlete (in the same or similar sport) per roster.


Jewelry is not allowed during intramural play. This includes earrings, bracelets, necklaces, and fitness trackers, among other things.


Medical jewelry is allowed but must be taped down.


Headwear is not permitted during intramural play. This includes hats and bandannas among similar items.


Athletic clothing and footwear is required. Prohibited items include but is not limited to: jeans, cargo pants/shorts, skirts, loafers, open-toed shoes, and boots. 


Non-marking footwear is required to participate.


Any casts, braces, or other protective equipment must be padded and secure.


Mouth guards are recommended, but not provided.


Jerseys are available for use at the playing location. Teams are not required to bring their own.


If both teams have similar color jerseys, the visiting team is required to wear the UC IM-issued jerseys.


Prior to registration close, a team must have at least six players confirmed on its IMLeagues roster. Teams that fail to do so may not be included in the league.


Once playoffs begin, players may not be added to the roster without direct approval of the Coordinator and/or Assistant Director of Intramurals.


Teams may have up to twenty (20) players on its roster.


No team shall participate with less than five (5) players at any time


If injuries or ejections cause a team to drop below minimum players required, the team may continue, as long as they started with the minimum number of players.


At the approval of the supervisor and opponent, teams may participate below the minimum number of players needed to start a game if deemed competitive by the staff and the opponent agrees to waive protest rights under Section 5.4


Mixed gender teams may not have more than three players of one gender on the court


Mixed gender teams must adhere to section 5.5 regardless of injury or ejection - even if it results in a short handed scenario


Teams are permitted one (1) checked-in coach on the bench. 


Substitutions may only enter the contest between rounds 


Matches will be best of five, with a five-minute limit to each round


The clock may only stop on official's timeouts


There will be no timeouts. One-minute will be allotted between rounds, time permitting


Teams that arrive late to games and/or are not ready with the minimum roster by start time will receive the following penalty:


1-4 minutes late = Other team starts with 4/6 players in the first round


5-9 minutes late = Other team starts up 1-0


10+ minutes late = Game is forfeited.


Teams that forfeit must pay a $20 non-refundable reinstatement fee prior to the end of the regular season to be eligible for playoff consideration [Refer to Section XII of the Intramural Handbook for more information]


In order to prevent forfeits, teams may also default once per season. Teams must give a minimum 48 hour notice of default to qualify by emailing [Refer to Section XII of the Intramural Handbook for more information]


If time expires, the team with more remaining players wins


If both teams have equal numbers of players, sudden death will begin:


Sudden death will begin after stoppage with a jailbreak & all players returned to the game


Teams will return to their baselines, keeping the balls they currently have. Play will resume after the official's whistle starting play


The loser of the set shall be the team with the first player eliminated


The boundaries of the court are determined by the boundaries of the volleyball court. All active players must stay within these lines, unless they are retrieving a dodgeball that has exited the playing area.


Teams will line up on their respective end lines with six balls evenly dispersed at the midline for an opening rush


Opening Rush shall adhere to the following guidelines of 9.3:


Prior to the opening rush, all players must have both feet behind the end lines.


Teams may begin rush on the whistle


Should a team false start, the teams will return to their baselines and the non-offending team will be given four (4) dodgeballs to begin - with the offending team receiving two (2)


A player may partially cross the halfway line with their body on the opening rush


During the opening rush, all dodgeballs must be moved behind the attack line before being thrown


Players may only go out of bounds to retrieve dodgeballs on their respective half of the court. 


Players that leave inbounds for purposes other than retrieving dodgeballs shall be deemed out


Attempts to eliminate a player while out of bounds will not count


Eliminated or bench players may not help retrieve dodgeballs for their team.


Should a bench/eliminated player assist, it shall first be a warning. A repeated offense will result in a loss of one player currently on the court


A match will be considered final once three (3) games have been won by a team


A player can be eliminated via any portions of Section 10.1:


A player is hit below shoulder level by a live ball


A player is inadvertently headshot during attempts to Duck, Dip, Dive, Dodge, or Duck


A player's live ball caught by an opposing player


A player crosses the mid-line with an entire foot 


A player crosses a boundary line with an entire foot at any point [Exception: Section 9.4]


A player's dodgeball is disloged and contacts the ground in an attempt to block a throw


Dodgeballs deflected by a held ball or another player and caught will result in the thrower being out


If a player catches a ball, a team member from their own team may come back.


The order in which the players come back into the game will be the order in which they were eliminated. For example, the first person out must be the first person back in.


Once players are eliminated, they must immediately drop all balls and exit the court.


Eliminated players must line up in the order they were eliminated on the baseline corner nearest the official


Teams may not possess all dodgeballs on its side for five (5) seconds or longer.


Before five (5) seconds are up, the possessing team must make a play across the opponent’s attack line, including rolling, throwing, or attacking.


First violation: Play is stopped, the opponent shall receive three (3) balls 


Second violation and susequent: Play is stopped. One (1) player from the offending team shall be eliminated


Stalling rules will apply for all game and time periods.


If a player makes a throw into the opponent's basket all eliminated players from their team may re-enter the game