Issue 4/20                                                                                5th February 2020

BAFRA Newsflash

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Week 3 Update

So, the week after pay day is usually a bit slower for registrations, but we are up to 52 bookings (over halfway to the magic 100 mark). We are back working college games so why not consider ‘banking’ your fees for the Convention. Although we cannot take your fees directly for registration, you can set the money aside and use it to book. With the Super Bowl over, you may have thought there are no real competitions left, but Krister is just getting into gear for the annual Saturday night Convention Quiz. Henry Richardson has apparently requested a Motherwell FC trivia round (which seems like a ruse to get the Scottish team extra points), but that is unlikely to happen.....


The Convention will be held at Yarnfield Park Training & Conference Centre, Yarnfield Lane, Yarnfield, Staffordshire, ST15 0NL.  Yarnfield Park is a leading training and conference centre in the heart of the UK.  I would recommend that you look over the facility on their website where you can also find details of the location and directions:


Please note we have introduced a change to the registration process

You can now register to attend the Convention at the undernoted website and book accommodation if required:

Administering the registration process and processing payments is a time-consuming task given our high attendance figures.  As such I would request that you register and make your room payments as early as possible.


In our efforts to make the Convention more accessible to everyone, this year we have again negotiated excellent rates for accommodation which are detailed below.  In addition, the BAFRA Board has agreed to provide some funding to keep down the costs. The rates indicated are per room, per night and include all discounts and a full breakfast.

Remember, to take advantage of the above rates you must book your room via


Payment for Convention rooms are due by 14th March. Payment can be made either electronically or by cheque.

It is appreciated that some people may wish to spread the cost and make multiple payments over the weeks leading up to14th March.  Please use the same instructions as above.  If you wish to make multiple payments, then you must make the payments electronically and not by cheque.

Unfortunately, payment for the Convention cannot be taken from Game Fees.  The administration work involved is far too time consuming and does not fit well with our electronic process of paying Games Fees by direct transfer to your bank account.

Friday Night

Again, last year, many attendees stayed on the Friday night to save an early rise and travel on Saturday morning.  As such the above rates are available for both the Friday and Saturday nights. I would recommend booking your room as early as possible.

Ian Sneddon - Convention Delivery Team


The BAFRA Selection Committee is pleased to announce the following crew for the 2020 BUCS Bowl Game:

Referee: Tim Ockendon

Umpire: Graham Hedges

Head Linesman: Dean Wright

Line Judge: Stuart Tabberer

Back Judge: Liam Wooton

Side Judge: Steve Egan

Field Judge: Dan Holt

This Final will be played on Tuesday 24th March 2019 at the University of Nottingham. Please join the BAFRA Selection Committee in congratulating these officials on their appointments.

This game will be preceded by the Division 1 Final. Although this is a National Final it is not a Bowl Game.  However, due to the day of the week, a crew has been notified and confirmed their availability.

Officials will be assigned shortly via Arbiter.

Roger Goodgroves – Director of Operations


I have recently been appointed as BAFA Disciplinary Officer. I am keen to recruit a number of deputies who can assist with the BAFA Disciplinary process to ensure it's run fairly, efficiently and smoothly for the benefit of all participants in the sport.

If you think that you would like to undertake this important role, please contact me at with a short CV detailing any relevant experience. If you would like more information about what the role entails before submitting your application, please contact me.

Ben Griffiths – BAFA Disciplinary Officer


This year we will again be organising a bulk order of BAFRA Polo tops for delivery at the 2020 convention. Those of you eligible for free Bowl Game shirts will be contacted shortly to confirm your status. In addition, all officials will have the chance to place an order.  

The shirt choices we will be offering are as follows:

- Plain Black Polo with embroidered BAFRA Logo - NO TEXT - £12

- Coloured Polo with Embroidered BAFRA Logo and upto two lines of customisable text - £17

Payment will be required in advance and there may be a small charge for P&P for anybody who orders and fails to collect/ask someone to collect at the convention. Prices are based on expected size of order and are subject to change depending on orders received.

To register interest for this years order please fill out the following google form:

You will be contacted to confirm your order, shirt colour/s and to request payment towards the end of the month.

Stuart Tabberer - Deputy Director of Finance


Thanks to some data unearthed by Keith Wickham, some extra data has been added to this list which may be viewed in the members’ area of the website at:

There are still quite a few gaps from the earlier years so, if anyone has any additional information, (or if you spot a mistake!), please let me know.

Paul Sutton - General Secretary


Congratulations to Noel Cassar on completing all of the requirements necessary to become Qualified.

Thanks to Ian Wainwright and all those who are helping with Noel's training.

Pete Thom - Director of Training









New this week

Darrel Knute Holden


Derby Braves



As the receiver was in the process of making a catch, #54 made forcible contact with the receiver's head and neck area, whilst also leading with the crown of his helmet.

9th Feb 2020 v DMU Falcons

Liam Coxon


Durham Saints



Player received his first unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for taunting a prone opponent and his second for stopping prior to the goal line on a long completion, turning into the field then falling into the endzone.

16th Feb 2020 v Leeds Beckett Carnegie

Previous weeks

Marvin Obi


Birmingham Lions



Upon seeing a teammate and an opponent continuing to engage each other away from the play, #59 reacted angrily by forcibly charging into the opponent, standing over him and yelling while he was on the floor before being physically restrained by a number of his teammates.

8th Feb 2020 v UEA Pirates

Max Lee-Sang


Bournemouth University Bobcats



With 1:09 left in the second quarter, the player taunted an opponent who was prone on the ground. After the official threw a flag for unsportsmanlike conduct (taunting), the player continued with a tirade of foul language and abuse to the official, this resulted in a second unsportsmanlike conduct foul.

9th Feb 2020 v UWE Bullets 2nd Team

Jarrod Roscoe


UCLan Rams



With 0:33 remaining in the fourth quarter, player was seen to make forcible contact with an official.

9th Feb 2020 v Leeds Gryphons





New this week

ARU Rhinos

Goal posts were not correctly located.

Larry Rigby #269


Bath Killer Bees

90-yard field with no nine-yard marks nor limit lines. Coaches and Team areas were marked out with cones. Ball provided were underinflated and led to a minor delay in the start of the game. Due to building works one goal mechanics were required. There was fencing relatively close to the field at the end with the goal that was not used. Have re-recommended that some sort of padding or mats are secured to the fencing. Due to rain prior to the game, the hash marks between the goal line and five-yard line at the Sports Training Village end became lost in the mud and will need repainting prior to the next home game. Changing room was not lockable and shared with other officials but roomy with provided showers. Bags were left in cars.

James Ford-Bannister #479

23rd Feb 2020 v Exeter Demons

Brighton Panthers

100-yard rubber crumb field, markings are a bit faint, and there are multiple sports marked with brighter colours. Otherwise, a good field.

Viktor Janvari #63

16th Feb 2020 v Reading Knights

Bristol Academy Pride

As there was a soccer match before our game, the changing rooms could not be accessed until 1pm (for a 2pm kick off). However, there was space in the general viewing room so, we were able to pregame without any negative impact and this had little effect on us.

Keith Wickham #423


Brunel Burners

Game called off on arrival at the venue.

Graham P Hedges #219


City Wolfpack

Team did not inform BAFRA via the correct method that the game had been called off, due to a waterlogged pitch. E-mail notification only sent to Referee which was not seen until after arrival at ground.

Phil Clarke #262


Coventry Jets

Field well marked with rugby markings also present in white.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395

9th Feb 2020 v Leeds Beckett Carnegie

DMU Falcons

DMU were upset that on the Loughborough roster there were no student ID numbers. The roster provided met BAFA requirements, therefore the game went ahead.

Mike Roberts #32

16th Feb 2020 v Warwick Wolves

East Kilbride Pirates (Sapphire)

Two fields in the same area, both marked out in cones. Normal game day procedures such as ball boys and chain crew were not required. Each team provided their own game ball.

Michael Prentice #393


Edinburgh Napier Knights

Because of the recent rain, and muddy field, the field markings were fair at the beginning of the game but deteriorated during the game.

Ian Sneddon #427


Exeter Demons

90-yard field with rubber crumb surface. No three or nine-yard markings. Other sports markings were on the pitch.

Richard Madge #485


Hertfordshire Hurricanes

Markings faint but all present. Team areas marked with cones. There was an issue with the chain crew changing at half time and the away team assisted with getting the game going before home team members could be found.

Brian Yates #29


Huddersfield Hawks

90-yard field in yellow lines 1" wide. No Team areas or Coaching boxes marked, cones were used to denote these. Of the three balls presented only one was inflated to the correct pressure, the away team supplied two balls until the home team found their pump. The chain broke several times during the game. There were no goal posts, both coaches agreed to play without goals.

Chris Jarvis #10

9th Feb 2020 v Lincoln Colonials

Leicester Falcons (Sapphire)

Game field marked out with duct tape, team areas marked in cones.

Perry Wayman #504


Liverpool Raptors

90-yard field with no players box marked. One of the end zone pylons was not weighted, and would not stand up, so it was placed on the back corner to avoid any issues. There was difficulty with the box operator during the first half and there was a slight delay to the second half kickoff when he failed to reappear. A replacement was briefed and the second half ran much more smoothly.

Lee Taylor #183



90-yard field, which had been remarked since the previous game played at JMO, although no players box were marked. One of the end zone pylons was not weighted, and would not stand up, so it was placed on the back corner to avoid any issues.

Lee Taylor #183


Newcastle Raiders

No limit line, no numbers or marks at nine yards.

Henry Richardson #25

9th Feb 2020 vs Edinburgh Napier Knights

Nottingham Students

Field markings continue to fade as the season progresses. Coaches boxes only three yards from the field and goalposts attached to the fence.

Ian Wainwright #567


Oxford Brookes University Panthers

No marked team areas.

Oliver Maskell #221

9th Feb 2020 v Chichester Spitfires

QMBL Vipers

Team areas marked in cones. Well-marked field, had clearly been marked fresh on the day of the game. No numbers, but clearly had been significantly re-assessed prior to this game. Chain crew provided close to kickoff but were capable.

Michael Hansford #594


Sheffield Hallam Warriors

80-yard field. No three or nine-yard mark nor numbers. Team and coaching areas were not marked out, so cones were used along with team discipline.

David Hewitt #607

16th Feb 2020 v LJMU Fury

Sussex Saxons

Well marked rubber crumb field with football markings in blue and other markings in different colours. End lines had been marked too close to the surrounding fence so endzones were shortened. Team areas marked with cones. One member of the chain crew was swapped at half time

Henry Young #486

9th Feb 2020 v UCL Emperors

UWE Bullets

Game suspended in the first quarter for 42 minutes due to an injury requiring an ambulance. Only one of the officials changing rooms was available, which was too small for a crew of five.

Euan Paterson #165

15th Feb 2020 v Birmingham Lions

UWE Bullets 2nd Team

Chain crew changed frequently and without informing the officials. Only one of the officials changing rooms was available, which was too small for a crew of five.

Euan Paterson #165

15th Feb 2020 v Plymouth Blitz

Outstanding items from previous weeks

Bath Spa

Well mannered game played in atrocious conditions (heavy rain & mud), although credit to the ball persons for attempting to keep spare balls as clean & dry as possible. Field marked just before game, in very wet conditions, so there were a number of marking missing, including numbers, nine yard marks, limit lines and team area markings. All other lines were marked in blue and the End/Side and Goal Lines remained visible throughout the game. However, the attempted hash marks were quickly lost in the mud down the middle of the field. There was an issue with the chains having to be repaired.

Albert Lambert Jnr #461

23rd Feb 2020 v Solent Redhawks

Bradford Bears

No team area or coaches boxes marked. 90-yard field marked in very faint red lines. The hash marks were so faint that they were almost invisible once the lights came on. There were four sideline hashes in each end zone for an unknown reason. Crew changing was the gym, which was not lockable and provided no private shower or toilets.

Lee Taylor #183

9th Feb 2020 v Bangor Muddogs

Birmingham Lions

Faded black field markings difficult to see. No nine yard marks. Team areas marked out using cones.

Euan Paterson #165

8th Feb 2020 v UEA Pirates

Chester Legion

The field markings were all present but the hash marks were very faint, probably owing to the overnight frost. They were also in blue so could be difficult to see at times. The chain crew proved to be a challenge and the down box operator had a habit of chasing after the runner!

Tim Vickers #129


Chichester Spitfires

During the week, the team contacted the referee to move kickoff to 2pm due to the medic being booked late. The medic didn't actually arrive until 2.20pm, so the game was reduced to ten minute quarters. The game finished just before the light became unplayable. The home team only provided two balls, which were in poor condition, a third was provided by the away team. During the game, one ball was switched several times as it became flat. An already torn up surface deteriorated as the game (and the rain) went on. Changing rooms not locked and we were informed that the sports centre was closing approximately 30 minutes after the game had ended.

Oliver Maskell #221

16th Feb 2020 v Sussex Saxons

Derby Braves

Field marked in blue but markings clearly visible. Cones used to show team areas.

Jed Brookes-Lewis #395

9th Feb 2020 v DMU Lions

Edge Hill Vikings

Field was marked in dark navy on grass. Field markings were slightly faint and will need remarking before the next game at this venue. The inbounds area of the field was very well marked, including the correct four inch gap between five yard lines and the sideline. There were no coaching lines or team area markings. The chain broke on numerous occasions, and after it was repaired (by either the chain crew or the visiting team). The changing rooms were not lockable and were shared with gym staff members.

The visiting team’s bus did not arrive to transport them to the ground so an alternative vehicle was sought, this resulted in the visiting team arriving only 10 minutes before the scheduled kick-off. The kick-off was delayed by 30 minutes. As this was the first game of a double header, the quarters were reduced to 8 minutes in length with the mutual agreement of both Head Coaches. The crew were not paid and should’ve been.

Ben Griffiths #228

16th Feb 2020 v Manchester Tyrants

Edinburgh Predators

No coaching or team boxes marked out with lines, cones were used. Game started 30 minutes later than planned due to late arrival of officials from game at another venue.

Shawn Sombati #15


Essex Blades

90 yard field, faint but present end lines, no team areas marked.

Lee Wood #517

9th Feb 2020 v Kent Falcons

Glasgow Tigers

Team and coaching areas not marked out, so game management placed cones at the 25-yard lines.

Ian Sneddon #427

9th Feb 2020 v UWS Pyros

Greenwich Mariners

90-yard rubber crumb field with no nine-yard marks or numbers. Field markings in blue with other sports markings in different colours.

Viktor Janvari #63


Heriot-Watt AFC

Field was marked in blue, under the floodlights it became increasingly difficult to see the lines. No team areas were marked so cones were used.

Gordon Galloway #7

9th Feb 2020 v Sunderland Spartans

Imperial Immortals

The field was marked to 100 yards with five-yard endzones so the playing size was reduced to 90 yards by moving the goal lines to the previous five-yard lines. The hash marks were present every five yards but were only about 12 yards from the sideline. There were no team areas marked.

Keith Wickham #423

9th Feb 2020 v QMBL Vipers

KCL Regents

90-yard rubber crumb field with no nine-yard marks or numbers. Field markings in blue (and very faint) with other sports markings in multiple colours. One cluster of floodlights is faulty and strobes about 2-3 times per second - one ball person had to be changed due to an adverse reaction to the lighting. Changing room available at the end of the game was too small for five officials.

Game kicked off approximately 40 minutes late due to an over-run on the crew's previous game. Quarters shortened to ten minutes due to time restrictions on the field.

James Ford-Bannister #479

9th Feb 2020 v Cambridge Pythons

Kent Falcons

90-yard rubber crumb field marked in red but very faded. They were difficult to see in daylight but harder to see under floodlights. Other sport markings in different blue, yellow and white. No limit lines, numbers or nine-yard marks. Coaches box marked with cones. Chain set broke multiple times throughout the game, but assistants were very competent.

James Ford-Bannister #479


Lancaster Bombers

80-yard field. The markings did fade somewhat as the light faded and the rain and hail continued. There are no floodlights for the pitch so an early kickoff is required to complete the game at this venue. It should also be noted that the trip from the changing room to the field involves a rather treacherous slope in the wintry conditions often experienced at Lancaster.

Lee Taylor #183

9th Feb 2020 v Manchester Tyrants

Leeds Beckett Carnegie

80-yard field. No three or nine-yard marks or numbers. Team areas were marked out with cones as they were missing. Officials changing room had no private toilet and too few coat hooks.

David Hewitt #607


Leicester Longhorns

There were multiple issues. The changing room was very small and only seats two officials. The Kick-Off was delayed for 45 minutes due to late arrival of ambulance. Chain set length and ten-yard field marking did not align. No marked coaches nor team areas and NFL-width style hash marks.

Andrew Lovell #559

9th Feb 2020 v Keele Crusaders

Manchester Tyrants

90-yard field marked in faint blue, this will need remarking, prior to the second half of the season, as under the floodlights the lines became very difficult to see.

Lee Taylor #183

23rd Feb 2020 v Aberystwyth Tarannau

University of Nottingham 2nd Team

Field markings continue to fade and become more difficult to see, goalposts are fixed to the perimeter fence. All assistants made available before arrival on the field and the chain crew’s enthusiasm was appreciated.

Ian Wainwright #567

9th Feb 2020 v Staffordshire Stallions

Oxford Lancers

Game played at Wolfson College due to lack of playable pitches. 90 yard field. No goals. Team areas marked with cones. Third & fourth quarters shortened to ten minutes due to pending darkness. Credit to Oxford for a well marked field and making arrangements for the game to go ahead at short notice.

Euan Paterson #165

9th Feb 2020 v Kingston Cougars

Portsmouth Destroyers

90-yard grass field which, due to the heavy rain in the days prior to the game, was very wet at the offset of the game. By the time the game was over, the entire middle of the field was a muddy bog with no grass left and this made it hard to see the hash marks. There were also issues seeing the sidelines in places. The field markings are in blue and the hash marks in the centre are at NFL-width. The hash marks on the sideline are marked but are about a foot away from the sideline. Team areas marked with cones. Balls supplied were under-inflated and had to be inflated to the correct pressure. Changing room was not lockable during the game.

David Knight #135

9th Feb 2020 v Reading Knights

RHUL Bears

100-yard grass field marked reasonably well in dark blue. No limit lines, numbers or nine-yard marks and the three-yard marks were at four yards. Team areas not marked so were indicated with cones. Light nearly became an issue in the last three minutes due to storm clouds and no flood lighting. Balls were slightly worn. Changing rooms impressively refurbished but open to the public and not lockable (although lockers are available if you provide your own padlock).

James Ford-Bannister #479

9th Feb 2020 v Surrey Stingers

Sheffield Sabres

The American Football markings were marked in black, there were markings for other sports in multiple colours including white field markings closer than four feet to some end zone lines. There were no team area markings of any sort. Two changing rooms were provided, combined they had capacity for four officials to change in. There was, however, a small seating area in which a pre-game could be held. The changing rooms were not lockable however lockers were provided.

Ben Griffiths #228

9th Feb 2020 v LJMU Fury

Solent Redhawks

Field was well marked and newly repainted so there was good visibility of markings. Posts are outside the endzone but uprights overhang the endzone by one yard.

Roger Brown #469

9th Feb 2020 v Plymouth Blitz

Staffordshire Stallions

Only one chair in changing room. Blue field markings on grass (mainly mud) field and difficult to see. This was compounded by missing yardage markers outside the sideline.

Austin Pickles #590


Stirling Clansmen

Yard lines marked in a mix of blue and white markings.

Ian Sneddon #427

9th Feb v University of Nottingham

Swansea Titans

The usual changing room wasn't available so the officials had to use a public changing room - at times this was shared with some, rather noisy, five-a-side football players, which briefly disrupted our pregame.

Amir Brooks #593

9th Feb 2020 v Hertfordshire Hurricanes

UCLan Rams

The coaching box was marked out with cones. The top of the down box broke off in the third quarter and had to be carried separately for the rest of the game. UCLan conceded the game with 0:55 remaining in the game due to injuries and a small squad size.

Tim Vickers #129

9th Feb 2020 v Leeds Gryphons

UCL Emperors

The away team (Winchester Silverbacks) failed to turn up. Informed of this at 12.45pm, 45 minutes before scheduled kickoff.

Alisha Darkins #573


UEA Pirates

Coaching boxes too close to the sideline.

Alisha Darkins #573


Warwick Wolves

Game delayed in third quarter due to an injury to a Warwick player that necessitated the use of a stretcher. 100 yard field marked in blue.

Krister Halvorsen #217

9th Feb 2020 v Loughborough Students

York St. John Jaguars

90-yard field with no three-yard or nine-yard marks, limit lines nor numbers. Team and coaching areas were incorrectly marked out between the 20 yard lines.The changing room was too small for four officials, although a second room was made available.

David Hewitt #607




New this week

Play: 1st & 10 at the B-12, the ball is located on the right hash mark. Team A attempt a pass to the left corner of the endzone towards A89. Defender B34 interferes with A89 before the ball arrives, and the pass falls incomplete, the Back Judge throws a flag for Defensive Pass Interference.

What is the next down and distance? Where will the ball be located laterally after enforcement of the penalty.


Last week

Play: 1st & 10 at the A-30 yard line. Team A run a sweep play. Linebacker B55 is moving towards the ball carrier when he blocks offensive lineman A68 in the back at the A-35.  B55 tackles the ball carrier at the A-32.

Ruling: 2nd & 8 at the A-32. When a player is attempting to reach a ball carrier he may push an opponent in the back above the waist (9-3-6-exp-3), therefore this block in the back is legal.

From a mechanics and philosophy point of view; blocking in the back should be called as an advantage/disadvantage foul (like Holding), it is not a safety foul. Before calling a foul for an Illegal block in the back, apply the same conditions as you would apply for holding, but also apply the conditions for calling clipping, particularly the need to see the entire act (M3.3.5.a).


New this week

Game Situation: Late in the first half, with the clock running, Team A take a timeout. After the Timeout is granted, they immediately indicate they are ready to resume play and line up in formation. When the timeout is granted Team B huddle near their sideline. Team A state that as it’s “their” timeout, so they shouldn’t have to wait for the defense to be ready. Should the Referee declare the ball ready for play immediately?

Answer next issue…

Last week

Game Situation: On an 8 man crew the Sidejudge is covering receiver A88 who is running a post pattern directly towards him.  Just as Quarterback A5 releases a pass towards A80 who is running a different route on the other side of the field, defensive back B20 holds A88 and restricts his movement for several seconds.  Ruling?

Answer: Though everywhere is considered the point of attack on a pass play before the pass is thrown (M3.3.2.a), once the ball has been thrown to the other side of the field, defensive holding should not be thrown unless it is a clear attempt to restrict a player who is making a lead block for the ball carrier (M3.3.2.f & M3.3.2.g).  In this case, the Sidejudge should most likely not call B20 for holding, unless the play comes towards his side of the field and B20's restriction prevents A88 from blocking.




Contact for details


22nd February (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

24th March (Tues)

BUCS Premier Bowl (University of Nottingham)

24th March (Tues)

BUCS Division 1 Final (University of Nottingham)

4th - 5th April (Sat-Sun)

BAFRA Convention

4th April (Sat)


9th May (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

18h July (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

5th September (Sat)

BAFA NL Division 2 South Final (Tilsey Park Stadium)

5th September (Sat)

Junior Britbowl (Tilsey Park Stadium)

6th September (Sun)

BAFA NL Division 2 North Final (Halton Stadium)

12th September (Sat)

BAFA NL Division 1 Final (New River Stadium)

12th September (Sat)

Britbowl (New River Stadium)

14th November (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Roger Brown


Roger Goodgroves


Ollie Maskell


Pete Thom

Director without Portfolio #1

Peter Parsons

Director without Portfolio #2

Steve Tonkinson

The opinions expressed in this Newsflash are those of the contributors, and not necessarily of BAFRA or its Directors.

All Incident Reports to be submitted via

Deadline for articles submitted by email ( is midnight Tuesday.

Editor: Ben Griffiths - Email:

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