We had a big turn-out at the field today with plenty of people showing on time for change, what a pleasure.
So while we were waiting for a critical mass, we managed to warm up and do plenty of practice throws. That will go a long way if we managed to do it before every pick-up session.
The session itself was good, if a little slow paced and was uneventful bar one incident.
Dangerous play and aggressive behavior is clearly not Spirit of the Game, but what happens in an incident where dangerous play might occur and whoever avoids it will lose the disc as in this incident?
A huck is flying towards the end-zone but will fall short. A defender is running along the end-zone line toward the corner with the offender running along the out-line. Both jump at about the same time, defender taps it away, offender misses and falls, knocks his head on the defenders cleat. Offender calls a foul alleging dangerous play citing contact.
The first helpful rule is this one:
12.9. When the disc is in the air, all players must attempt to avoid contact with other players, and there is no situation where a player may justify initiating contact. “Making a play for the disc” is not a valid excuse for initiating contact with other players.
However, it is immediately followed by this one:
12.10. Some incidental contact, not affecting the outcome of the play or safety of players, may occur as two or more players move towards a single point simultaneously. Incidental contact should be minimized but is not considered a foul.
Further down we also encounter this rule, which overrides any other rule:
17.1.1. Reckless disregard for the safety of fellow players regardless of whether or when contact occurs is considered dangerous play and is treated as a foul. This rule is not superseded by any other rule.
And just to add more food for thought:
17.2.1. A Defensive Receiving Foul occurs when a defender initiates contact with a receiver before, or during, an attempt to catch the disc.
17.2.2. After a defensive receiving foul:
18.104.22.168. if in the playing field proper or defending end zone, the receiver gains possession at the point of the infraction;
22.214.171.124. if in the attacking end zone, the receiver gains possession at the nearest point on the goal line, and the fouling player must mark them there; or
126.96.36.199. if the foul is contested, the disc is returned to the thrower.
But similarly the defender could also get the benefit of the doubt:
17.6. Offensive Receiving Fouls:
17.6.1. An Offensive Receiving Foul occurs when a receiver initiates contact with a defensive player before, or during, an attempt to catch the disc.
17.6.2. If the foul is uncontested, the result is a turnover, with the disc at the location where the foul occurred.
17.6.3. If the pass is complete and the foul is contested, the disc returns to the thrower.
So, there’s a lot of interpretation here. First you have to consider and agree on whether or not it was dangerous play, which each player will probably interpret differently.
Then you have to consider if the contact was incidental, ie. did it affect the play? You should also consider who initiated the contact; was it the defender contacting the offender, or the other way around?
However, after all this you will still notice what is the end of any foul call… agree or contest? So even in this situation, regardless of how annoyed or angry the defender or the offender might be, if there is a foul call the question should be: do you agree or contest?
As always, an agreement results in playing on, but a contest sends the disc back to the person who threw last.
MUO is less than 3 weeks away…