NCAA Soccer Rules; Overtime and Fight Protocols

Published on September 11, 2012

Kenneth G. Andres

Kenneth G. Andres
NCAA Soccer Secretary – Rules Editor

From Kenneth G. Andres, NCAA Soccer Secretary-Rules Editor

Overtime and Fight Protocols

Referees do not have discretion to change any playing rule. (See Rule 5.4.6.)


For regular-season games, two sudden-victory overtime periods of 10 minutes each shall be played. This procedure must be followed, regardless of whether or not the coaches “agree” to another procedure. Overtime must be played unless the referee determines in his/her discretion there is a legitimate safety reason not to do so. The coaches cannot agree in advance to end the game after the second period and not play overtime, or play the two full 10 minute periods even if a sudden-victory goal is scored. Failure to play overtime in accordance with the rule will result in the game being declared a ” no contest.”

There have already been two protests this season because the officials did not follow the overtime rule.


The referee shall inform the player(s), the head coach(s) and the official scorekeeper, who shall record on the official NCAA box form, that an ejection for fighting has been issued.

In addition, the referee shall electronically complete and file the fight reporting form located on the NCAA Soccer Central Hub website at within 24 hours of completion of the game.

There are five steps the referee must complete whenever a fight occurs:

1) Tell the player that the ejection is for fighting;

2) Tell the head coach that the ejection is for fighting;

3) Tell the official scorekeeper that the ejection is for fighting;

4) Ensure that the official box score specifically indicates the ejection was for fighting when you review and sign the box score after the game; and

5) Electronically complete and file the Fight Report form within 24 hours.

You must specifically state and use the word “fighting” at the time you display the red card and advise the player, coach and scorekeeper. For example, it is not sufficient to say the red card was issued because the player “threw a punch.”

We have already had two protests this season because the referee failed to advise everyone at the time the red card was issued that it was for fighting and/or failed to make sure that the official box score indicated the red card was for fighting.

There is no excuse for these types of errors to occur as they are misapplications of a rule, which you are obligated to know and enforce.


Chapter clinicians / rules interpreters should download and print out this directive for use during their next meeting.

Download pdf version of this directive

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