A very diligent chapter member asked me last night about the requirement for teams to warm up in front of their bench prior to the match. The member went on to say that he’d read the entire rules book and the only place this requirement was mentioned was in the Recommended Timing Sheets embedded in Rule 6. There was clearly some confusion about what “Recommended” meant in that context, as in whether the timing sheets were required like a rule or a general guideline that could be followed or not followed based on the governing sports authority’s guidance.
In the case of the Recommended Timing Sheets, the activities indicated are required as a rule. Unless the NCAA Soccer Rules do not otherwise specify when the activity takes place, the timing of the activity is recommended. Rule 6.3.4 indicates game rosters are exchanged 30 minutes before kickoff and teams clear the field with the captains and officials meeting for the coin toss 10 minutes before kickoff. The timing of these activities is a rules requirement and can not be modified.
The 2014-2015 NCAA Soccer Rules first indicated the requirement that teams are to warm up in front of their bench on the Recommended Timing Sheets. The 2016-2017 NCAA Soccer Rules additionally indicate when the halftime interval must begin on the Recommended Timing Sheets (immediately when the first half ends). In summary, as you review the Recommended Timing Sheets, consider the activities and the times indicated to be requirements just like any other rule.