NBVOA Logo
Home
About
Schedules
Officials Access
Coaches Access
Education
Forms
Leagues & Schools
Links
vb graphic

Back Row Players

Introduction With six players on each side moving around during play the status of a player can be easily lost. The following will help up-Refs pick up back row players.

Back Row Attacks

It is a back row attack when a back row player takes off from on or in front of the attack line, then:

  • Attacks and/or directs a ball which is completely above the height of the net,
  • AND the ball:
  • Has passed beyond the vertical plane of the net,
  • Is partially over the net and is contacted by an opponent, or
  • No part of the ball has crossed the net, and it is legally blocked.

Intent has been removed for the 2007 season. If a back row player sets the ball completely above the height of the net in front of the attack line and the enters the plane of the net AND the receiving team blocks the ball, it will be a back row attack.

It is NOT a back row attack when a back row player:

  • Takes off from behind the attack line, contacts the ball and the ball crosses the plane of the net.
  • Takes off from any point on the court, contacts the ball and the bottom of the ball is below the top of the net, and the ball crosses the plane of the net.

+If you are not sure if the player making the contact is a back row player the call can be delayed until you identify their position as being in the back row or front row.

Back Row Attack Usual Suspects

There are two types of players that usually make back row attacks, either legal or illegal:

  • The setter(s): A team may run one setter for the entire game that will make it easy for the up-Ref to pick up all the time. They may also use two setters in that case they are usually opposite of each other at the time of serve. When a team uses two setters you will have to know the position of the “active” setter at the time of serve. The “active” setter may be in the front row, but usually comes from the back row.
  • The hitter(s): A team will have one or two hitters that will make most, if not all, the spikes.
Picking 'em Up

Prior to calling for serve the up-Ref will scan the court:

  • Start with the receiving team and make a mental note of the position of the usual suspects for that team in regards to them either being in the front row or back row.
  • Then check your down-Ref and see if he/she is ready.
  • The scan the serving team and make a mental note of the position of their suspects.

During play you will normally see how a team develops their offensive and whom they go to for the “kill”. Sometimes as a player is going to hit the ball you will say to yourself “back row” or “front row”.

On all legal back row attacks give the “legal back row attack” signal. This will let coaches and players know that you know it was a back row player attacking the ball but it was legal.

It’s during the long rallies that we have a tendency to forget the position of players. When a questionable player attacks the ball make a mental note of the number or face. As you go with the ball to the other team’s side use your peripheral vision to see where that player goes.

  • Back row players normally retreat to the back row in order to play defense.
  • Front row players go to or stay at the net to “block”.
  • On dead balls see what position the player goes to prior to the serve. If a team rotates into position because of receiving a side-out, you’ll have to figure out what the player’s position was. Example: The LB rotates into the LF position. If the LB was the player that attacked the ball in front of the attack line with the ball above the top of the net – you have a “back row attack.”

When a team uses only one setter, the setter sometimes forgets if she is in the front row or back. Pay attention to this, as the setter could “dump” a ball or go up to block, forgetting her position as a back row player at that time.

+Back row attacks and back row blocks do not have to be called immediately. However, they do have to be called prior to the next serve being contacted.

Back Row Blocks

Back Row Block

Block is the action of a player(s) close to the net that deflects the ball coming from the opponent by reaching higher than the top of the net.  A block may involve wrist action provided there is no prolonged contact.

Back row players may participate in a collective block, as long as no contact with the ball occurs by any of the players of the collective block (rule change 2006).

If a back row player at the net, along with the blockers, attempts to block and is touched by the ball or the ball touches any of the players in that collective block, it is a fault.

It is not a back row block if a back row player:

  • Contacts the ball which is completely above the height of the net, on a team’s first or second hit, passing it to a teammate or attempting to save the ball,
  • AND
  • An opponent legally contacts the ball before it completely crosses the net.

Play continues even if the ball is hit back into the back row player (team’s first hit).

+If the ball completely crosses the net untouched, it is a back row player foul.

+If you are not sure if the player making the contact is a back row player, the call can be delayed until you identify their position as being in the back row or front row.

Back Row Block Usual Suspects

There is one type of player that usually make back row blocks, which are, in high school, always illegal:

  • The setter(s): A team may run one setter for the entire game that will make it easy for the up-Ref picking up all the time. They may also use two setters in that case they are usually opposite of each other at the time of serve.

Back row blocks usually occur when there is an over pass to the setter at the net who is a back row player. The setter will turn with the ball as it passes over the net with the hand(s) high above the head.

If the team immediately returns the ball you will have a back row block.

If the team plays the ball, this will give the setter time to retreat to the back row and everything will be ok.

Top

Site Maintained by
DataBase Management Services