Rules & Regulations


The latest FIFA Rules of play shall apply except as amended or modified herein.


Substitutions will be allowed as follows:

a. No limit on the number of substitutions or substitute.
b. A player who has been substituted for may return to the game.
c. Substitutions can be made only at the following times:

1) Prior to a throw-in in your favor;
2) Prior to a throw-in for your opponent, only if your opponent is making a substitution at that time;
3) Prior to a goal kick by either team;
4) After a goal; or
5) At half time.

d. Substitutions MUST be made:

1) After an injury, by either team, when the referee stops play, unless it is the goalkeeper.
2) Following a yellow card.  The opposing team may also substitute.


Under 19/17/16/15 40 minute halves
Under 14/13/12 35 minute halves
Under 11/10/9/8 30 minute halves


All age groups U-12 and older will use the three-man system with one referee and two assistant referees.  Club linesmen should be used if less than three officials show up.  Small-sided age groups (with the exceptions of U-12) will have only one referee, and club linesmen should be used in those instances.


The league entry fee consists of payment for league operating costs.  The league entry fee will be determined on a seasonal basis.  Any team failing to attend one of the mandatory preseason meetings will pay an additional $100.00 in league fees.  A separate performance bond of $500.00 will be required.  Forfeit bonds will not be cashed unless a team forfeits a game.  Teams shall also pay a separate fee to the MSYSA or US Club Soccer for the registration of player passes and roster.  This fee includes medical insurance and liability insurance.  No league fees will be refunded after the league deadline date, at which time the scheduling process will begin.  Referee fees will be paid to the referees by the league, and all referee fees are to be paid to the league at the time the league application and league entry fee are submitted, prior to the league application deadline date.


Player passes will be checked by the referee prior to the start of the game.  Prior to the start of every game, all teams must present a copy of their stamped roster to the referee for the referee to keep.  In the event there is a question regarding a roster or eligibility of any player, it must be brought to the attention of the referee prior to the start of the game and the team must notify the referee at that time that the game is being played under protest.  Latecomers must present their passes before they enter the game, and if there is a question of eligibility, this must be addressed with the referee at the time the player enters the game.  If an illegal player is used, any game in which that player is/was used will be forfeited, and the coach will be suspended for a minimum of the next played game.  Any player not properly registered is considered an illegal player.


A player or coach who is ejected receives a minimum of one-game suspension to be served the next played league game.  Additional penalties may be levied.  No appeal may be made from the one-game suspension.


Points shall be awarded on the following basis: three (3) points for a win and one (1) point for a tie.  Division or conference winners will be determined by points only and will have no tie-breakers.


Tie games shall stand as a tie, with no overtime to be played.


Forfeit time is the 15 minutes after the scheduled starting time.  For 11 vs. 11 games, a team is required to start a game if seven (7) players are present.  For small-sided games (7 vs. 7 through 9 vs. 9), a team is required to start a game if five (5) players are present.  Any team forfeiting will lose their performance bond and will be required to furnish a new bond prior to the next played game.  A team receiving two forfeits will be placed in bad standing with the league.


Game changes may be made at the request of any team, but must satisfy the guidelines set forth in the Guidelines for Game Change Requests.  The league also reserves the right to change any game and/or modify the schedule due to circumstances beyond their control, such as a field closure or field conflict, loss of a field, or any other unforeseen field problem.  State Cup games and President’s Cup games always take precedence over league games, and where there are conflicts, games will be rescheduled.  Any teams attempting to reschedule a game without the knowledge of the league will have their forfeit bonds cashed.

For postponements due to inclement weather or unplayable field conditions, should the entire league be cancelled, the league will designate the make-up date at the time of the cancellation.  However, in instances where only certain fields have been closed due to inclement weather or unplayable field conditions, it will be the responsibility of the participating teams to agree upon a date and time for a make-up game.  If it is deemed by the league that any postponed game is not made up due to the unavailability of one particular team, the league reserves the right to award the points to the opposing team.


An incomplete game must be replayed in its entirety.  However, should the non-completion of the game result from an act due to misconduct on the part of one or both of the teams or their management and/or fans, the BBSL Board shall decide the disposition of the game.


The U-9 and U-10 age groups will play in a 7 vs. 7 format.  The U-11 and U-12 age groups will play in an 8 vs. 8 or 9 vs. 9 format.  The U-13 and older teams will play in an 11 vs. 11 format.  Player rosters shall be limited to 14 players for small-sided age groups playing in the 8 vs. 8 format and 18 players for U-12 (11 vs. 11 format) and U-13.  For U-11 and U-12 teams playing in the 9 vs. 9 format, the roster limit is dependent upon whether you roster through the MSYSA or US Club Soccer.  For teams playing in the 9 vs. 9 format, teams using the MSYSA for rostering will have a roster limit of 14 players and teams using US Club Soccer for rostering will have a roster limit of 16 players.  For teams that are U-14 and older, an expanded roster of 22 players may be used, of which you must designate 18 players for each game.  For any team using a club player for any game, at no time may the number of players available for that game exceed their roster limit.

Teams playing in the small-sided format (U-12 and younger) may roster through either the MSYSA or US Club Soccer.  For U-12 teams using this league as their qualifying league for state cup or President’s cup, rostering must be done through the MSYSA.  All U-13 teams and older must roster through the MSYSA.

Validated player rosters shall be submitted in accordance to US Club Soccer or MSYSA guidelines prior to a team’s first game.  Any team that is found to not have a valid US Club Soccer or MSYSA roster will be deemed as using illegal players and will lose their performance bond.  Multi-roster players may be used for teams using MSYSA rosters.  A multi-roster player may only play on one team within any division.  For both MSYSA and US Club Soccer rosters, teams may use the club pass system, wherein a team may use any player that is rostered within their club and through the same same sanctioning organization, provided that player is age eligible for that team.  However, no player may play for two teams within the same division at any time during the season.   No team may have more than six multi-roster players on their roster.  For any particular game, no team may have more than six multi-roster players or a combination of multi-roster/club pass players.


Age groups will be determined by birth year.  There is no restriction on the number of players playing up in age group.


Regulation fields complete with goal nets, flags and visible lines shall be required.  It is the responsibility of the home field coordinator to provide the field equipment as mentioned.

To report field closures, the home field coordinator must notify Dawn Healey via e-mail at no later than 8:00 am on the morning of the game.  For any field that has a start time of 10:00 a.m. or earlier, field closures must be made three hours prior to the game time.  For Friday evening games, fields must be closed by 3:00 p.m. Failure to do so may result in penalty, such as loss of home field when the game is rescheduled.  Once a game has begun, the referee shall be the sole judge as to whether the field is playable.

All field closures will be posted under the Recent News section on the website.


Protests will be in accordance with the FIFA rules.  Protests must be received in writing to the Protest & Appeals Committee within 48 hours of the game and must be accompanied by a fifty dollar ($50.00) protest fee.

NOTE: Please notify Pete Livolsi via e-mail at on the day of the incident to notify the league of your intent to register a formal written protest.  The written protest may then be done via e-mail to Pete Livolsi and a $50.00 check (made out to BBSL) should be mailed to:  Peter P. Livolsi, 9801 Fox Hill Road, Perry Hall, MD  21128.


The one-ball rule is in effect.  However, referees may determine that a second ball may be used when conditions warrant. A size 4 ball will be used for the U-12 age group and below.  A size 5 ball will be used for the U-13 age group and above.


It shall be the responsibility of the home team to change jerseys when there is a conflict of colors.


It will be the responsibility of each team’s coach to maintain control and attitude of his/her team and supporters.  If control is not maintained, the referee has the authority to issue a warning, ejection or termination of game.


The preferred method for team and spectator positioning should be with each team and their fans/spectators on the opposite side of the field from the opposing team and their fans/spectators.  For example, a team and all their respective coaches, management and spectators should be together on the same side of the field.  However, should the referees request that both teams be on the same side of the field with all fans and spectators on the opposite side, teams will respect the request of the referees.