2019-20 Volleyball Rules Changes

2-2-2, 2-3j (NEW), 2-4-1e(NEW), 2-4 PENALTIES 3 (NEW), 9-8-1i: When the ball strikes the cables and/or the diagonal poles used to retract ceiling suspended net systems the referee will stop play and determine if the ball was playable. The referee will signal out-of-bounds or replay.

Rationale: Establishes the cables and diagonal poles used to retract suspended net systems as restricted play and aligns officials’ treatment of a ball striking either the cables and/or the diagonal poles.


 4-2-1, 4-2-1a (NEW), 4-2-1e (NEW), 4-2-2 (NEW): Eliminates the solid-colored uniform requirements, establishes that the libero uniform must clearly contrast with his/her teammates’ uniforms and reorganizes the legal uniform rule.

Rationale: Clarifies the requirements for all legal uniforms and simplifies the requirements for the contrasting libero uniform maintaining the compliance of all currently compliant team and libero uniform jerseys.


4-2-4b: Eliminates the use of double zero (00) as a uniform number option.

Rationale: Eliminates confusion surrounding the signaling of “00” and “0”.


4-2-4c: Beginning with the 2023 season the body of the uniform number must clearly contrast with the uniform top regardless of borders. This will eliminate the allowance of borders to provide contrast between the number and the uniform number.

Rationale: Allows officials and scorers to easily identify uniform numbers.


5-5-1b; 5-6-1b; 7-1-1a; 7-1 PENALTIES 1; 7-1-2; 7-1-4; 7-1-4 PENALTIES 1, 2: Requires the second referee to collect team rosters at the prematch conference while allowing changes to be made until 10 minutes remain on the pregame clock and establishes lineups to be submitted to the second referee before each set.

Rationale: Eliminates warmup interruptions by officials requesting rosters with 10 minutes remaining on the warmup clock, allowing for a smoother warmup process for coaches, players, officials and scorers.


5-9-2a NOTE: Establishes that the line judge shall take their position and move in line with the extension of the end line when the ball is being served near the line judge’s position replacing the old technique to move directly back in line with the sideline.

Rationale: Allows the line judge to watch for foot contact with the end line and move quickly back for a view of the sideline. This is a more appropriate position and transition for line judges.


8-1-6, 8-2-5g (NEW), 8-2-6d: Establishes that the ball remains dead when tossed for serve and it touches any part of the backboard or supports hanging in a vertical position over the serving area and is an illegal serve (Signal 13) and not a service fault.

Rationale: Accurately reflects the action since the ball is not contacted for serve.




2-1-5: Clarifies that the attack line shall be measured from the edge of the attack line farthest from the center line to the axis of the center line.

4-2-7: Clarifies the penalty for the removal of any part of the uniform top or bottom as a yellow card charged to the coach  for unsporting conduct.

5-5-3b(26): Provides additional instructions for the second referee when conducting the coin toss prior to the deciding set by requiring the second referee to communicate with the first referee the serving team and the proper team benches.

8-1-6, 8-2-5g: Establishes the proper signal for a tossed ball that contacts a backboard or its supports hanging in a vertical position over the serving area is officials signal 13.

NFHS Official Signals Chart: Removes signal 7 “Legal Back-Row Attack” from the chart and establishes the signal as an informal officials’ signal in the NFHS Officials Manual renumbering remaining signals.


2019-20 Volleyball Editorial Changes

2-4-1b; 5-2-1b; 10-2 PENALTIES 2; 11-4-2; 12-2 PENALTIES 1a, b; Scoring Section; Officials Signals 19A


2019-20 Volleyball Points of Emphasis

  1. Informal Officials Signals
  2. Ball-handling
  3. Side Folding Retractable Backboards

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