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Oklahoma State University
Department of Wellness

America's HEALTHIEST Campus®


Sportsmanship is a vital part of the Competitive Sports Program at OSU. Clearly contests are important to participants, but the importance should not become so overriding that players lose sight of appropriate behavior. The playing site is not a venue for physical or verbal abuse for players or spectators. In order to encourage proper conduct before, during and after the scheduled contest, officials, supervisors and professional staff will make decisions on whether to warn, penalize or eject players, teams and/or fans for unsportsmanlike conduct.

  • The current sportsmanship policy was created to place the responsibility of good behavior on the captains and teams themselves. 
  • Team Ratings:  Each team will be rated on their sportsmanship behavior for every contest they play. The official(s) and supervisor(s) responsible for the contest issue the ratings  Each rating has a specific behavior that must be attained by the team. Ratings are 4, 3, 2, 1, 0 with 4 being perfect sportsmanship and 0 being totally uncontrollable behavior. Teams must maintain a three (3) average over the course of the regular season to be eligible for playoffs regardless of their win/loss record. Any team falling below the three (3) average at the conclusion of the regular season will be automatically eliminated from any playoff opportunity. The average is calculated by taking the total of all ratings and dividing that by the number of games played. 
  • For specific unsportsmanlike behavior, sport by sport, yellow and red cards will be issued by the officials and supervisors working each contest. Any individual receiving a red card for any reason must see the Graduate Assistant or Coordinator in charge of that sport or the Assistant Director. All red carded individuals will be ineligible for participation until they have met with the appropriate Competitive Sports Staff member as mentioned above. All cards (either yellow or red) received during each contest will affect the team’s overall sportsmanship rating.
  • There is a complete set of guidelines contained in this booklet detailing the sportsmanship policy for the regular season and throughout the playoffs. Please consult this policy for specific information. Any questions regarding this policy can be directed to the Competitive Sports Coordinator to the Assistant Director.
  • In the event of a forfeited/conceded contest the winning team will receive a four (4) rating, with the forfeiting team receiving a two (2) rating. For double forfeited contests both teams will receive a two (2) rating.
  • Rainouts will not be taken into account for sportsmanship but will be counted as a win to go into playoffs.
  • Good sportsmanship and fair play are always encouraged. To emphasize this, the Competitive Sports Staff will honor one team each year with the Team Sportsmanship of the Year Award, which is displayed on plaque in the Competitive Sports office.

Sportsmanship Rating Policy
I. In order for a team to qualify for playoffs (post season tournaments) each team must have:
   A.   A 3.0 sportsmanship rating average at the conclusion of regular season contests (scores will not be rounded)
   B.   Not forfeited out of regular season (2 forfeits; conceding is the same as a forfeit)

II. Description for each of the ratings:

    4 Rating: 0 Yellow and 0 Red Cards

    3 Rating: 1 Yellow Card and 0 Red Cards

    2 Rating: 2 different players each receive a yellow card and 0 Red Cards or a team forfeits
                      25 points will be deducted from the Teams All-University points

    1 Rating: 1 Red Card or 2 Yellow Cards on same player or 1 Yellow Card & 1 Red Card
                       50 points will be deducted from the Teams All-University points

    0 Rating: 2 Red Cards and 0 Yellow Cards or 3 Yellow Cards (different players) and 0 Red Cards or 2 Yellow Cards and 1 Red Card
                     100 points will be deducted from the Teams All-University points

III. Anytime a team reaches the“0” Rating with or without cards in a game it shall be declared a forfeit immediately and a forfeit fee will be charged to the team captain.  A team that Receives a “0” rating must have their captain and the player/s who received a red card meet separately with the Graduate Assistant in charge of that sport or the Assistant Director to determine the eligibility status of their team. The team will not be allowed to play and will forfeit each contest until they have met with the appropriate Intramural Sports Staff member as mentioned above. Red/yellow cards can be given by any staff member until the entire team has left the playing area.

IV. Any team that Receives 4 or more cards (whether it is yellow or red) or technicals in the same sport will be declared ineligible until the captain has met with Graduate Assistant in charge of that sport.

V. Each team, in each game, will be given a sportsmanship rating by the official(s) and/or supervisor(s) who are on that contest. The supervisor may change a rating if they feel the team’s conduct warranted a lower rating. The supervisor has the authority to lower a rating based on their observation of the teams conduct including not picking up trash from the playing area.
     A. Forfeit Guidelines:  For each forfeit received because the other team failed to show, an automatic 4 rating will be assessed to the winning team. The forfeiting team will be assessed a 2 rating. For a double forfeited contests both teams will Receive a 2 rating.
     B. All rain-out games not made up will not be counted towards the total amount of games in the season. No ratings assessed for either team.  Rainout games WILL count as a win for playoff eligibility
     C. Conceding a contest is actually forfeiting without paying, therefore all forfeit guidelines will be enforced for any concede.

VI. A player will not be eligible to participate on his/her teams for at least two weeks (if ejection was sportsmanship related) after the disciplinary hearing for the following:
     A. Receiving a Red Card
     B. Receiving 2 Yellow Cards in the same contest
     C. Receiving 3 Yellow Cards during one academic year (August 2017 – May 2018)
     D. Receiving 2 Separate Yellow Cards within the same sports season (i.e. 2 separate yellow cards received in Flag Football during two different days)
     E. Any player who receives a yellow or red card after a suspension of two weeks or longer in the same semester will be ineligible for 4 weeks after the disciplinary hearing meeting has occurred.  If this player receives another yellow or card during that academic year they will be suspended for one calendar year, minimum.

VII. Any player with the above will be ineligible for at least two weeks and must set up a meeting with the Graduate Assistant or Coordinator to determine their eligibility status. Any player playing in any contest that is ineligible will cause that contest to be forfeited and the team will receive a “0” rating.

VIII. Teams playing in playoffs will meet the following criteria:
         A. If a team receives a “0” rating they will be eliminated from the playoffs immediately
         B. If a team receives a “1” rating, they must come to the Competitive Sports Office the following day to discuss the rating and a decision will be rendered at that time whether or not to allow the team to continue in playoffs. If they are able to continue to play, the team must Receive no lower than a “3” rating in all remaining                         contests
         C. Any player ejected from any contest during playoffs will be ineligible for the remainder of all playoff games (even if they are playing on two teams they are not eligible to play for either team)
         D. Teams must maintain a “3” rating for all scheduled contest throughout playoffs. The team captain must come to the Competitive Sports Office to discuss their team’s eligibility if their rating falls below a “3” rating in any contest.

IX. The ratings from each regular season game are averaged in order to determine if a team will make playoff status