Download PDF of Rules

Games will be played under USA Volleyball Outdoor Volleyball Rules with a few modifications. The following are highlights of these rules. In the case of a dispute, the full rules will be available online.

Participants should be aware that there is a risk of injury in participation of intramural sports due to the inherent nature of the activity. Individuals are encouraged to have a physical examination and to obtain adequate health and accident insurance prior to participation. Individuals participate in intramural activities at their own risk.

Table of Contents

  1. General Information
  2. Equipment and Uniform
  3. Game Regulations
  4. Co-Rec Modifications
  5. Rule Enforcement

General Information

The team captain is responsible for all information contained in the Intramural Rules and  2016- 2017 IM Handbook.

Location: All Intramural Sand Volleyball games are played at the Outdoor Center Playfields Sand Volleyball courts, located at 1st Street and Stadium Drive in Champaign

Advancing to Playoffs: Teams that meet the following criteria will advance to compete in the playoffs:

  1. Team must have won
    • 3 games or more (out of 4) during the regular season = Regular length seasons
    • 2 games or more (out of 3) during the regular season = Shortened Seasons
  2. Team must have an average sportsmanship rating of at least a 3
  3. Team must have completed the online captains quiz
  4. Team must have NO regular season forfeits

Playoff criteria will only be adjusted in situations where facility or weather conditions limit play. It is the captain’s responsibility to check their playoff schedules which will be made available on IMLeagues as soon as possible after the regular season has concluded.

Game Time: Game time is the scheduled division time, unless the previous game goes over the allotted time. Schedules can be accessed through the IM Leagues website interface.

Teams should be warmed up and ready to play as soon as the previous game ends on their field

  1. Teams should report to the check in table a minimum of 15 minutes prior to the scheduled game time to sign in

Officials: The games will be self-officiated. All disputes should be settled between the two teams. If the two teams cannot arrive at an agreement, the game will result in a double forfeit. The Intramural Sports Supervisor will be on site, but the role of this supervisor is strictly to clarify any rules or interpretations. THE RULING FROM THE SUPERVISOR IS FINAL.

  1. DISAGREEMENTS: All disputes and disagreements must be settled between the two teams. If the two teams cannot reach an agreement within one (1) minute, the game will end in a double forfeit.

i-card Sign-In Procedures: All players must present a valid i-card in order to participate in an Intramural contest. Upon arrival prior to an intramural contest, all participants must sign in with the Intramurals staff assistant and present their i-card for identification purposes.

Failure to Sign in: If a player is found participating in the contest without having signed in on the official intramural gamesheet and doesn’t have their i-card present or are ineligible for the One-Time Exception Policy, said team will forfeit the game and all forfeit fees and consequences will apply.  If the participant has their i-card present or has not used their 1 time exception, the team may still play the game with designated disadvantages.

One – Time Exception: The One-Time exception policy is designed so that students who have forgotten their i-card, but are printed on the roster, may still sign-in for their game.  Each participant may use this exception policy once per semester.  To use the One-Time exception policy the following criteria must be met:

  1. Must be pre-printed on their team roster
  2. Must have a valid government Photo ID (Driver’s License, Passport, State issued ID)
  3. Must not have previously used a One-Time Exception during that semester

Roster Policy:  An individual is bound to the first team that he or she signs into a game for.  Participants must sign up on the online roster before 2pm on the day of the contest (except for Sunday games) or they will not be allowed to sign-in onsite or participate.  For Sunday games, players must be added to the roster before 2pm on the preceding Friday.   A participant is not formally considered to be on that team’s official roster until he or she physically signs in for that team at an actual contest.

IMLeagues Mobile Confirmation: In the event a player has not signed up for their team before the rosters are printed, they may show the Intramural Staff their name on the IMLeagues Roster online.  This must be done by an Intramural Supervisor so you will have to be patient and wait until one is available to help out.  If you show as ineligible on the mobile site, nothing can be done until the office is opened.  IT is highly recommended that you join your team roster before 2pm on the day of your game (2pm on Friday for Sunday games) to ensure your ability to play in the contest.

Defaults: Should a team know in advance that they cannot field a team on a given night; they may avoid forfeit fee and loss of playoff eligibility consequences by contacting the Intramural Office at 217-244-1344, or to default their game. All defaults must be called or emailed in before 2:00 PM on the business day of the contest, or before 2pm on the Friday before a Sunday contest. Please make sure to include your name (captain), team name, sport, and the day and time you are playing so that you game can be defaulted properly. 

  1. Teams losing by default will lose the contest by the same scoring structure that is applied for forfeits.
  2. Teams losing by default will receive a sportsmanship rating of “C”.
  3. Teams losing by default will remain eligible for playoffs.

Forfeit: Teams who are not present at their scheduled contest by game time or are unable to produce enough eligible players to field a team, will be assessed a forfeit aside from the following Grace Period Exception

Grace Period Exception: A team may delay its right to win by forfeit and allow the other team a grace period of ten minutes to acquire a properly equipped team.

  1. Once a ten minute grace period is granted by the team who is ready, they may not rescind their decision and take a forfeit before the ten minute period passes.
  2. If ten minutes passes after the scheduled game time, and the minimum number of eligible players required to play for the opposing team has not arrived, then the team that is ready to play must accept the forfeit.
  3. If the forfeiting team is able to obtain the minimum number of properly equipped players before the ten-minute grace period expires, the game shall be started the opposing team shall be given the ball and choice of goal awarded to the opposing team.

Forfeit Consequences: Teams who are assessed a forfeit will

  • Be charged a $75.00 forfeit fee.
  • Is ineligible to advance to the playoffs.
  • Upon a second forfeit, teams will be assessed a second $75.00 forfeit fee, and will be removed from the league.
  • Teams losing by forfeit will lose the contest by a score of 1-0 and a sportsmanship rating of a 0.

Sportsmanship Ratings: In order for a team to qualify for post season playoffs, they must have a 3.0 average in sportsmanship during regular season pool play.  Any team receiving an “F” rating during the regular season will be declared ineligible for post-season tournament play.

The Intramural Activities Program expects all participants to respect and abide by all rules and policies, show respect and concern for their opponent and intramural staff, and refrain from abusive language, poor attitude, and manipulation of the rules to further their chance of winning. Upholding high standards of integrity and fair play is of the utmost importance to the Intramural Activities Program.

Sportsmanship ratings are given to teams after each contest by the intramural manager, supervisors, staff assistants, and game officials. These ratings reflect behavior before, during, and after the contest. The decision reached will be final. Ratings will be given according to the following scale:

  • 4 = Team shows above average conduct and sportsmanship
  • 3 = Team shows average conduct and sportsmanship.
  • 2 = Team shows below average conduct and sportsmanship.
  • 1 = Team shows poor conduct and sportsmanship.
  • 0 = Team has unacceptable conduct and sportsmanship.

Protests: The games will be self-officiated. All disputes should be settled between the two teams. The Intramural Sports Supervisor will be on site, but the role of this supervisor is strictly to clarify any rules or interpretations. THE RULING FROM THE SUPERVISOR IS FINAL. With Self Officiated Sports, Protests are restricted to player eligibility. A team may protest no more than three participants on any given night. All eligibility protests must be made prior to the end of the contest.  Please note that captains cannot protest eligibility. If a protest form has been filed, Captain’s and or designated team members should not sign the gamesheet.

For additional information: Please review the 2016- 2017 IM Handbook.


 All players are required to bring a valid UIUC ID (i-card) to all Intramural games

Jersey Policy: The Intramural jersey policy is NOT in affect for Volleyball.

Shoes: Shoes are not required for Sand Volleyball.


  1. Players must wear athletic apparel with no exposed metal.
  2. No baseball style hats, bandannas. No other headwear with knots or dangerous materials is allowed.
  3. Players may not wear casts/splints under any circumstances at any time and all pads/braces must be above the waist. Players who wear a knee brace with exposed metal or metal hinges are required to cover it.
  4. Players may wear kneepads, gloves, covered knee braces, headbands, and knit caps.
  5. Sun Glasses are permitted.
  6. Absolutely no jewelry is allowed (rings, watches, including LIVESTRONG bands, etc). Necklaces and earrings or other jewelry should be removed for player safety.
  7. All equipment is subject to the approval of the intramural staff on duty

 Game Regulations

Rosters:  Teams are to be comprised of 6 players on the court at once. 4 players are required to start and continue a match without forfeit.

  • Team rosters are limited to a maximum of 20 players

Timing:  Matches will consist of a best 2 out of 3 game series. The first two games in will be played to 15 rally scored. If a third match is required, it will be played to 11 rally scored.

Start of Game: Game will begin with a coin toss; the winning team will get choice of first serve or the side of the net to defend in the first game. Teams will switch sides and first possession in the second game. In the case of a third set another coin toss will occur, teams will switch sides in the third set only, after a team has scored 6 points.

End of the game: Both team captains must self-report and confirm the score to the Intramural Supervisor. Captains are required to check and verify all information by signing the scorecard.

Inclement Weather: A game shall be considered “official” and the result final if after the conclusion of the first game, the game is stopped for inclement weather. In the event that the first half was complete, but the contest was tied, an overtime period will be scheduled to determine a winner. If the first half of the game was not completed when the contest was stopped, the game will be rescheduled and started over from the beginning on the reschedule date.

  • Information regarding cancellations will be relayed to captains either in an email from the intramural office staff or in a message recorded to the intramural activities and club sports rain line (217-244-0329). If the weather is inclement, intramural participants should call the rain line to see whether intramural activities have been cancelled. The rain line will be updated by 4:30pm daily. In some cases, the rain line may not explicitly specify whether intramural activities are cancelled. Unless teams have received an explicit cancellation message in regard to their sport via email or through the rain line, teams should assume that all intramural contests will play as scheduled.

Co-Rec Modifications

There are no Co-Rec Modifications for Sand Volleyball, with the exception being that a legal line up (minimum amount of each gender) must be on playing on the court at all times.

Legal Line-Ups:

Men Women
3 1
3 2
3 3
2 3
1 3

Rule Enforcement

Player Positions

  1. At the time of service all players must be inside the boundaries of the court.
  2. Players do not have to play in set positions or rotate.
  3. Players must maintain the same service order throughout the match.
  4. If a player is substituted for, they must return to the same spot in the service order.


  1. A legal serve will take place from behind the team’s end line anywhere inside the sidelines.
  2. Serving player must remain behind the end line until the ball has been served. If player serves in the air, they can land on or inside the line
  3. A legal serve must cross the net between the antennas; a legal serve can touch the net on the way over.
  4. Attacking (spiking the ball) on a serve from the receiving side is prohibited

Play at Net

  1. Ball must cross over net between the antennae; a ball hitting the antennae is out of bounds.
  2. Player contact with the net or antennae are prohibited.
  3. In blocking, a player may touch the ball beyond the net provided that they do not interfere with opponent’s play.
  4. A player may cross under the net provided it does interfere with opponent’s play.
  5. The Line is IN play.