19. NCJLA Sportsmanship Incident Reporting Policy
Sportsmanship is an integral part to the growth of the game both on and off the field. The NCJLA has identified the educating, promoting and encouraging of good sportsmanship as a priority, in an effort to continue the development of the proper culture and spirit of the game. As the sport continues to grow throughout our region, the NCJLA believes it is important to always instill the best values in and set positive goals for players. In doing so, our lacrosse community must reward those that “Compete with Class and Honor the Game” as well as enforce the rules and promote sportsmanship; otherwise, the integrity of the game will suffer.
The NCJLA welcomes reports of incidents which honor the game of lacrosse such as players and coaches extending a helping hand, spectators at a host venue making an extra effort to welcome opposing fans, etc. These positive incidents can serve as an inspiration to all of us. Positive Sportsmanship Reports can be submitted using the NCJLA Sportsmanship Incident Report Form.
The NCJLA also tracks and responds to reports of inappropriate sportsmanship. The NCJLA strives to respond to serious claims of inappropriate sportsmanship in a timely manner and, in some cases, may take action against individual(s) including penalties ranging from verification of a signed Code of Conduct, to suspension from a game, to expulsion from the league.
The claims of inappropriate sportsmanship in this policy are independent of an ejection of a player, coach, or fan by an official during a lacrosse game. The consequences for an ejection by an official are listed in the NFHS and US Lacrosse rule books. The NCJLA may require additional consequences for players, fans or coaches who receive an ejection (see below).
Sportsmanship Incident Report (SIR) Form
The NCJLA does not respond to sportsmanship incidents until an official SIR has been submitted. SIRs may be filed by anyone participating in or observing an NCJLA game, including players, parents, coaches, or club officers.
Once submitted, the SIR will be read and acknowledged by the NCJLA recipient by the following Monday evening.
Depending on the nature of the SIR, the NCJLA may ask for further clarification from the filer before bringing the SIR to the attention of the affiliated club. The NCJLA may require additional witness reports to confirm the nature and details of the incident.
If the NCJLA deems that action against the accused individual is warranted, the club president of the affiliated club will be informed of the incident report and pending board decision. This communication will occur by both phone and email to the contact information listed in the club profile on the NCJLA website. The club president, along with other witnesses with first-hand experience, will be given an opportunity to respond in writing to the filed SIR, within a specified amount of time.
After a response is received from the club president, the NCJLA will evaluate all collected responses and may reconfirm with the original SIR filer that they still adhere to their original statement. Once the NCJLA is satisfied that it has gathered all of the facts and relevant information necessary to make a decision regarding the appropriate action(s) to be taken, the NCJLA will inform the club president of any actions taken or further steps required before the player, coach, parent, or fan can return to participation in the NCJLA. The identity of those involved with the SIR may be disclosed or withheld at the discretion of the NCJLA.
The club president may appeal the action to the NCJLA board. Appeals are limited to rulings of suspensions beyond a single game. In these situations, the NCJLA board may vote to uphold, reject, or modify the appeal. Any decision by the NCJLA board is final.
Weekly Schedule for SIR Processing
The following are types of Inappropriate Sportsmanship with typical penalties from the NCJLA (irrespective of any actions by officials and clubs):
Player Sportsmanship (conduct, handshake issues, etc.) – produce signed and dated Player Code of Conduct form; coach to address behavior with player
Coach Sportsmanship (conduct towards players, opponents, junior officials, adult officials; coaching or rewarding dangerous play, etc.) – present signed and dated Coach Code of Conduct form; club president to address behavior with coach or possible suspension from the next game(s).
Parent/Fan Sportsmanship (conduct toward players, opponents, or officials) – A variety of consequences, up to and including requiring the offending club to pay for additional officials, or barring specific individuals from attending future games
Offensive Language (confirmed ethnic, gender, hate speech, or other slurs; profanity; threats of violence) – minimum 1-game suspension
Fighting – minimum 2 game suspension
Non-fighting ejections that violate the Player/Coach/Parent Code of Conduct- 1 game suspension
False Representation (lying, changing jerseys to avoid suspensions, impersonating another player, impersonating an NCJLA Certified Coach, claiming to be NCJLA certified etc.) – minimum 2-game suspension
Intentional dangerous play on the field (multiple incidents regarding the same player or coach) –minimum 2 game suspension
Three or more offenses (3 or more, do not have to be for the same infraction) - can warrant more severe consequences to include being suspended from participating in the league.
The SIR committee reviews all reports on an individual basis and may rule differently based on the factors surrounding the report.
Three separate incidents resulting in suspension may result in expulsion from the league.
Players who are ejected for non-fighting related reasons are barred from playing in the next game. This is an NCJLA policy in addition to the NFHS and USL rule books specified amount of time barred from a game.
A parent ejected from a game will be barred from attending games for the rest of the season.
A coach who is ejected from a game must leave the field and venue immediately and is barred from coaching the next game. If a coach is ejected from a game a second time, they are barred from coaching any team in the NCJLA for the remainder of the season.
Ejections for Fighting: The first time a player is ejected from a game due to fighting, they are barred from playing in the next two games. The second time the same player is ejected from a game for fighting, they will be expelled for the remainder of the season. This rule does not apply in the case of a player fouling out of a game.
All types of ejections listed above rollover to the next season if they occur at post-season events.
Offensive Language Rule Adoption
An official shall eject from the game any player, substitute, non-playing member of a team, coach, assistant coach or anyone officially connected with a competing team or fan using a racial slur or derogatory term related to race, religion, color, gender, sexual orientation, or ethnicity.
A coach or assistant coach ejected by an official for using a racial slur or derogatory term shall be suspended from coaching any NCJLA team for the remainder of the season.
Any player that is ejected twice in a season by an official for using a racial slur or derogatory term shall be suspended from playing in the NCJLA for the remainder of the season.
In the event that a racial slur or derogatory term is not heard by the official, the offended player(s) should inform their coach at the earliest possible time. At the next official time out, the coach should inform the head referee or umpire, who should in turn inform the opposing coach of the allegation. The offended player(s) and any others who heard the comments are encouraged to file a Sportsmanship Incident Report with the NCJLA as soon as possible after the game, which gives the NCJLA a basis to conduct an investigation and take action as deemed appropriate.
Coaches are encouraged to discuss this rule with their players and provide education materials when appropriate.
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