Policies of the Michigan Water Polo Association

 

Published 5 November 2019

Section 1.        Obligation of Members

  1. Each member shall pledge to uphold the By-Laws and Policies as prescribed by the Michigan Water Polo Association (MWPA) and in no way shall commit any act that will cause harm or embarrassment to the MWPA. The Board of Directors are authorized to take any steps deemed necessary against any member violating this obligation.

Section 2.        Rules of Order

  1. Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern the procedures of the MWPA.

Section 3.        Conduct of High School Competition

  1. Seasons of Play:

  1. Boys:  Fall Season with starting date as defined by the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA).  The State Championship Tournament will be held two weekends before Thanksgiving.  The Regional Qualifying Tournament will be two weeks before the State Championship Tournament and the District Qualifying Tournament one week before the Regional Qualifying Tournament.

  2. Girls:  Spring Season starting date as defined by the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA), with the District Qualifying Tournaments held two weeks before Memorial Day Weekend, the Regional Qualifying Tournaments held the weekend before Memorial Day weekend, and the State Championship Tournament held the weekend following Memorial Day weekend.

  1. Dual games within a district during the girl’s season may not be held until after the third week of practice unless both participating coaches are in agreement.

B.  Teams:

  1. Any high school within the State of Michigan may field a team in the appropriate season.

  2. Cooperative Agreement Policy

I. Cooperative Programs are arrangements made for a maximum of two years but may be voided at any time by resolutions of all cooperating boards of education or by Michigan Water Polo Association Executive Board (MWPA).

II.  If two or more schools elect to combine into a cooperative program, they are required to provide the executive board of MWPA a written statement outlining the need to combine programs no later than two weeks prior to the start of that respective season.

III. The deadline for Cooperative Program requests are 2 weeks prior to the start of Boys or Girls water polo season.  Extenuating circumstances may arise after the start of the season where a team does not have the numbers necessary to compete that year.  In this event the team will contact the MWPA board immediately and a timeline will be established to allow for the school to find a suitable program to co-op with for the year.

IV. Cooperative arrangements should be sought only where opportunities are not limited and students will not be “cut” from the squad.

V. It is the understanding between cooperative programs that the goal is for each high school to have its own program.  

VI. No school shall be permitted to have athletes competing for different programs in the MWPA.  

VII. Renewals are required to recertify by the deadlines outlined in III. with MWPA approval.  A renewal is not guaranteed and a written statement outlining the need to renew, along with a written plan to recruit athletes and develop a stand alone team at the secondary school will be required.

VIII.  The MWPA executive board has the authority to deny any cooperative agreement proposal if; the policies outlined above are not met in a satisfactory capacity, they feel the agreement would not benefit the growth of the sport, unfair competitive advantage may be gained, or any extenuating circumstances not outlined in VIII. occur  that dissuades them from approving the proposal.

IX.  Any violation of the co-op policy can result in the forfeiture of games.

 

Procedures

I. One school must be designated as the primary host school; the official name.  

  1. Whose training rules, lettering guidelines, etc. will be followed.

  2. Whose local academic and other regulations will be followed.

  3. Whose insurance coverage will be provided.

ii. Training rules, lettering, academic and insurance coverage must be on file with MWPA. 

 ii. Athletic Directors from each school are required to sign the application as approval for the cooperative program.

vii. School districts should be adjacent or overlapping and the travel distance between schools should be reasonable. 

 

C.  Eligibility

  1. Each team shall be comprised of students who are eligible to play in accordance with MHSAA guidelines.

  2. No player shall play in both a Junior Varsity and Varsity game on the same competition day.   If this occurs the school with the ineligible player will forfeit the second game (does not apply to a ‘JV second’ game). Schools with ≤19 (less than or equal to) players may elect to play the varsity game first with a minimum of one week prior notice to the opposing school and MWPA Board. Coaches need to be reasonable with their requests and plan ahead of time.

a.      If a varsity goalie is rendered unable to play due to an injury, sickness, or an eligibility rule (i.e. three exclusions, game misconduct, etc.) during the course of the game, then a JV goalie would be allowed to play as the varsity goalie in exemption of rule C.2., as long as two separate goalies are listed, one on the varsity roster and one on the JV roster for that game.  The varsity goalie that left the game due to an injury may only re-enter the game as a goalie.

  1. Any acting head coach during regular season must be a school official (employee of the school district, roster recognized coach of the team, or non-school official having passed “Safesport trained certification” to identify, prevent and respond to issues of misconduct.) Acting head coaches during Post-Season must meet regular season standards and have already passed the coaches exam. (rules test reqd. for all coaches on bench during post season). Lack of eligible coach per this policy will result in a forfeit.

  2. During post-season, all athletes, coaches, and managers on the bench must be on roster. No other people shall be permitted on the team bench.

  3. Photographers / videographers must receive approval from tournament director before they are allowed on deck for any post season games.

  4. If a team uses an ineligible athlete, ineligible coach, or have no eligible coach for any competition, these games shall be considered forfeits. In a forfeit, the opposing coach shall choose either to have the final score remain at the current score OR end as 5-0. If the team ahead on the scoreboard causes the forfeit, the score shall automatically be 5-0.

D.  Team Rosters

  1. Rosters that document eligibility (signed by school official) are due to the District Qualifying Tournament Director before the start of that tournament.  The Tournament Director will forward the eligibility rosters to the Regional Tournament Director. MHSAA Eligibility forms are traditionally collected by coaches from the office of their athletic directors. Any game played by an illegible player will result with the opposing teaming recording a forfeit win.

  2. Rosters that document eligibility (signed by school official) are due to the State Championship Tournament Director before the start of that tournament. MHSAA Eligibility forms are traditionally collected by coaches from the office of their athletic directors. Any game played by an illegible player will result with the opposing teaming recording a forfeit win.

E. Playing Rules

  1. Play shall be governed by the current NFHS Rules with the following exceptions:

a.      Mercy Rule – At the start of the 3rd or 4th quarter, if the goal differential is 10 goals or more, then the game clock will be switched to five minute quarters or a running clock if the facility has the ability to run the game clock without interfering with the shot clock. Once the quarter time has been reduced, it will not return to 7 minutes.

F.  Inclement Weather

  1. As adopted from MHSAA Policy

a.      Delays for contests scheduled prior to 3 p.m. must not exceed three hours. Delays for contests scheduled for 3 p.m. or later must not exceed one and one half hour. Delays on nights not followed by school for all the competing teams may be longer by mutual agreement of participating schools. A postponed contest shall be rescheduled on a date/time mutually agreed to by the schools involved. The schools shall update the board via email with make-up date.

b.      A decision to resume the contest within the time frame must be made by the officials who shall consult the home team administration and visiting school administration present at the contest.

c.      The home school is responsible for facilities and will be given priority consideration in the final decision if there is not consensus among the three parties.

d.      The final decision shall consider liability and conditions of facilities as well as future schedules, need to play the contest and finally the quality of all other options.

e.      NOTE: Tournament policies for Tournament contests, or more restrictive local policies for regular-season contests would supersede these policies and should be shared with the opponents and officials prior to the contest, preferably in writing.

Otherwise, and to the extent allowed by the playing rules code, the official(s) shall make the final decision regarding game suspension once the game begins.

G.  Tie Break System Clarification:

  1. As adopted by the USWP/FINA TIE BREAK SYSTEM

a.      BL6.4.1.2.1 If two teams shall have equal points, further classification shall be established as follows:

b.      BL6.4.1.2.1.1 The team winning the game between the two teams shall be placed higher.

c.      BL6.4.1.2.1.2 If the game between the two teams resulted in a tie, a further classification shall be established based on their results against the other teams in order of their ranking; first based upon goal difference, and next based on goals scored.  The comparison shall be made first, compared to the highest team, and then, if still tied to the next highest team, and so on.

d.      BL6.4.1.2.1.3 If they are still tied, the tie shall be resolved by each team shooting five penalty shots at its opponent's goal in alternate succession. The first team shall take its first penalty shot and then the other team shall take its first penalty shot, etc.  If a tie shall exist after that procedure, each team shall then take alternate shots until one team scores and the other misses. Different members of the team must shoot each shot. The procedure shall be conducted following the final game of that round or at the first practical opportunity.

e.      BL6.4.1.2.2 If three of more teams shall have equal points, further classification shall be established as follows:

f.       BL6.4.1.2.2.1 Any time during the application of this BL6.4.1.2.2, when the number of the then tied teams is reduced to two BL6.4.1.2.1.1, BL 6.4.1.2.1.2 and BL6.4.1.2.1.3 shall be followed.

g.      BL 6.4.1.2.2.2 The results among the tied teams shall determine the placing. The comparison shall be made upon first, the goal difference, and next, based upon goals scored.

h.      BL 6.4.1.2.2.3 If more than two teams are then still tied, a further classification shall be established based on their results against the other teams in order of their ranking; difference, and next, based upon goals scored. The comparison shall be made first, compared to the highest team, and then, if still tied, to the next highest team, and so on.

Section 4. Conduct of High School Championships

A. There shall be District Qualifying Tournaments, Regional Qualifying Tournaments and a State Championship Tournament each season.

  1. There shall be four Districts in the State, with two Districts in the West Region and two Districts in the East.  The Board shall determine where teams will be placed by geography and size of the District.  District alignment will be assessed at the business meeting prior to affected season if necessary. Board will make final decision following business meeting.

a.      If one District/Region has significantly more teams than another, the Board shall have the authority to move teams to the other District/Region for balance of number only.  The closest team(s) by geography shall be moved.

b.      Teams must be aligned with a district 10 days prior to the season to be eligible for the district tournament.

B.  Scheduling

  1. All district seed games need to be completed one full week prior to the District Tournament

a.      If any seed game must be scheduled after this date, coaches must seek Board approval immediately.

C.  Site Selection

  1. Sites wishing to host a High School District, Regional or State Championship Tournament must be present at the board meeting for tournament site selection.  District, Regional, and State Tournament sites will be determined at the spring business meeting for the next Girls season, and at the fall business meeting for the next Boys season.

  2. Board of Directors shall select the best facility available, with a premium placed on all-deep courses and the need to alternate the State Championship Tournaments from West to East every other year.

D.  Conduct of District Qualifying Tournaments.

  1. Seeding for the District tournament will be based on regular season game results between the teams in each district.

a.      Every team in a district must play each other at least once.  If teams are playing each other more than once, they must declare which game will be counted as the district game prior to the start of the season.  Teams to report results of these games to the MWPA webmaster and to the district tournament director.

b.      District seeding games shall be played in an alternating home and away manner.  If one teams hosts one year, it is the other team’s turn to host the following year.  If the team that is supposed to host cannot host for some reason or chooses not to host, a mutually agreed upon site can be chosen by the coaches involved.

  1. District Qualifying Tournaments shall be run in accordance with the tournament formats attached in APPENDIX A and posted on the MWPA website.

E.  Conduct of Regional Qualifying Tournaments.

  1. Regional Qualifying Tournaments shall be run in accordance with the tournament formats attached in APPENDIX A and posted on the MWPA website.

F.  Conduct of the State Championship Tournament

  1. The State Championship Tournament shall be run in accordance with the tournament formats attached in APPENDIX A and posted on the MWPA website.

G.  Awards

  1. In each season, there shall be the following awards (provided by the MWPA):

a.      District Qualifying Championship Tournament Awards

(i)     First Place and Runner-Up Team Awards (for boy’s season, 4 total)

(ii)   First Place and Runner-Up Team Awards (for girl’s season, 4 total)

b.      All-Region Awards

(i)     All-Region Teams (3).  This award is based upon the entire competition season.

(a)    Nominations for All-Regional must be submitted to the MWPA Secretary prior to the District Championship Tournament.

(b)    Teams can nominate up to five players in rank order.  A cap# and Goalie designation (if required) need to be on the nomination

(c)    Ballots will be distributed to the coaches via the MWPA Secretary at the District Championship Tournament (via web or hard copy) and are due the Tuesday prior to the start of the Regional Championship Tournament.

(d)    Teams will vote for 14 players, and may not vote for any of their own players.  The first team vote will be for one goalie and six field players, with one of these athletes selected as Most Valuable Player.  The second team vote will be for one goalie and six field players.

(e)    MVP votes count for 3 points, First Team Votes count for 2 points, and Second Team votes for 1 point.

(f)     The athlete with the highest tally will receive Most Valuable Player.  The goalie with the highest tally and the first six field players will be named to the First Team All-Region. The goalie with the second highest tally and the next six field players will be named to the Second Team All-Region.  The next seven players (any position) will be named Third Team All-Region.  In the case of ties for the final position on the First or Second team, all tied athletes will be placed on the higher team.  The Third Team All-Region team will be adjusted so that there are a total of 21 athletes that are named to the All-Region teams.

(g)    If a team fails to submit a ballot, players from that team will be excluded from awards. (Coaches with extenuating circumstances are encouraged to contact an executive board member.)

(h)    All-Region awards will be announced and distributed at the Regional Championship Tournament.  (If certificates are not available at the Regional Tournament then they will be distributed at the State Tournament).

(ii)   Coach of the Year (Region) – Shall be voted upon by the coaches at the same time on the All- State ballots.

(iii)  Player of the Year (Region) – Shall be voted upon by the coaches at the same time on the All- State ballots.

c.      All-State Awards

(i)     All-State Teams (3).  This award is based upon the entire competition season.

(a) Nominations for All-State will be based on the first and second team All Region Teams.

(b) Ballots will be distributed to the coaches via the MWPA Secretary at the State Championship Tournament (via web or hard copy) and voting will take place at the State Tournament.

(c) Teams will vote for 14 players, and may not vote for any of their own players.  The first team vote will be for one goalie and six field players, with one of these athletes selected as Most Valuable Player.  The second team vote will be for one goalie and six field players.

(d) MVP votes count for 3 points, First Team Votes count for 2 points, and Second Team votes for 1 point.

(e)    The athlete with the highest tally will receive Most Valuable Player.  The goalie with the highest tally and the first six field players will be named to the First Team All-State.  The goalie with the second highest tally and the next six field players will be named to the Second Team All-State.  The next seven players (any position) will be named Honorable Team All-State.  In the case of ties for the final position on the First or Second team, all tied athletes will be placed on the higher team.  The Third Team All-State team will be adjusted so that there are a total of 21 athletes that are named to the All-State teams.

(f)     If a team fails to submit a ballot, players from that team will be excluded from awards. (Coaches with extenuating circumstances are encouraged to contact a member from the Board of Directors.)

(g) All-State awards will be announced and distributed at the State Championship Tournament.

(h) All-State selections will be compiled of athletes that made First and Second Team All- Region.  All teams will be required to submit their ballots at the State Championship Tournament and awards will be distributed at the MWPA Meeting. (First Team –Plaque, Second and Honorable Mention -Certificates)

(ii) Coach of the Year – Shall be voted upon by the coaches at the same time on the All-State ballots.

(iii)  Player of the Year/MVP – Shall be voted upon by the coaches at the same time on the All- State ballots.

d.  Regional Qualifying Championship Tournament Awards

(i) First and Second Place Awards

(ii) All-Tournament Teams (First, Second, and Honorable Mention).  The voting for All- Tournament Teams will be handled by the host site.

(a) All teams participating in the tournament will receive a vote, along with a collective ballot submitted by the officiating crew.

(b) Teams will vote for 14 players, and may not vote for any of their own players.  The first team vote will be for one goalie and six field players, with one of these athletes selected as Most Valuable Player.  The second team vote will be for one goalie and six field players.

(c) MVP votes count for 3 points, First Team Votes count for 2 points, and Second Team votes for 1 point

(d) The athlete with the highest tally will receive Most Valuable Player.  The goalie with the highest tally and the first six field players will be named to the First Team All-Region. The goalie with the second highest tally and the next six field players will be named to the Second Team All-Region.  The next seven players (any position) will be name Honorable Mention All-Region.  In the case of ties for the final position on the First or Second team, all tied athletes will be placed on the higher team.  The Honorable Mention team will be adjusted so that there are a total of 21 athletes that are named to the All- Region Tournament teams.

(e) MWPA Secretary to provide certificate template to host site prior to tournament via email. Host site to print, complete, and present certificates.

e.  State Championship Tournament Awards

(i) First, Second, and Third Place Team Awards

(ii) Individual medals for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd  place teams at state (limit 15 per team paid by MWPA)

(iii)  All-State Tournament Teams (First, Second, and Honorable Mention) The Voting for All- Tournament Teams will be handled by the host site.

(a) All teams participating in the tournament will receive a vote, along with a collective ballot submitted by the officiating crew.

(b) Teams will vote for 14 players, and may not vote for any of their own players.  The first team vote will be for one goalie and six field players, with one of these athletes selected as Most Valuable Player.  The second team vote will be for one goalie and six field players.

(c) MVP votes count for 3 points, First Team Votes count for 2 points, and Second Team votes for 1 point

(d) The athlete with the highest tally will receive Most Valuable Player.  The goalie with the highest tally and the first six field players will be named to the First Team All-State Tournament.  The goalie with the second highest tally and the next six field players will be named to the Second Team All-State Tournament.  The next seven players (any position) will be name Honorable Mention All-State Tournament.  In the case of ties for the final position on the First or Second team, all tied athletes will be placed on the higher team.  The Honorable Mention team will be adjusted so that there are a total of 21 athletes that are named to the All-State Tournament teams.

(iv)  Tournament MVP – Certificate

(v) MWPA Secretary to provide certificate template to host site prior to tournament via email. Host site to print, complete, and present certificates.

f.   Academic All-State

(i)     Candidates for Academic All-State will be grade level Sophomore or above.  Candidate will hold at least 3.65 cumulative GPA on a 4.0 scale.  Coaches/Members/Representative must submit eligible candidates to the President the first Sunday after the District Tournament. Certificates will be distributed to Coaches/Members/Representative at the State Tournament meeting held at the State Tournament site.

  1. All-American Selection

a.  Candidates for the All-American awards through the National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association shall be comprised of all First Team All-State athletes.  Applications are the responsibility of individual coaches. The MWPA Secretary will e-mail the procedures for nominating the First Team All-State athletes to the appropriate coaches. Once that e-mail is sent, it is the coach’s responsibility to complete the nominations. The MWPA will cover any application fee, proof of payment/submitted application must be sent to the treasurer for reimbursement.

 

Section 5.  Misconducts, Flagrant Misconducts, and Unsportsmanlike Conduct

A.  Punishment for all misconducts is removal for the remainder of the current game in which the player receives misconduct, no "game plus one". A misconduct is also not to be considered for "Unsportsmanlike Conduct". If an official thinks the act is deserving of an additional game or is unsportsmanlike, then a Flagrant Misconduct must be called. This follows NFHS Water Polo rule book.

B.  When an athlete is disqualified during a contest for Flagrant Misconduct, it shall be considered Unsportsmanlike Conduct. That athlete shall be withheld from competition by his/her team for at least their next scheduled contest.

C.  When a coach is disqualified during a contest due to a Red Card, it shall be considered Unsportsmanlike Conduct. That coach shall be prohibited by his/her team from coaching or attending at least their next scheduled contest.

D.  Any coach who receives two game exclusions for Unsportsmanlike Conduct and any athlete who receives three game exclusions for Unsportsmanlike Conduct within one season shall be excluded from participating in the remainder of the season.

E.   Officials who issue game exclusions for Flagrant Misconduct or Misconduct must notify both benches of the call and must report these incidents to the Director of Officials. In the event of a Flagrant Misconduct. The Director of Officials will forward copies of the report to the coach and athletic director of the offending team.

F.   When a coach or athlete is disqualified for Unsportsmanlike conduct during his/her team’s final game of competition in a District or Regional Qualifying Tournament, that person shall be prohibited from participating in his/her team’s first game at the Regional or State Championship Tournament (whichever comes first), whether or not there have been games between the District, Regional and State tournaments in which the disqualified participant has been withheld.

G.  Failure of the team for any reason to enforce this regulation shall prohibit the team from entry in the next MWPA Championship Tournament or from the remainder of the current tournament if the disqualification occurs during a Post-Season Championship Tournament or during the last regular season contest.

H.      Disqualifications from one season carry over into the next season.

I.   For the purposes of this Section, during a “dual match” (a Junior Varsity and Varsity pair of games constitutes a “dual match”), “contest” shall be defined as the next day of previously scheduled competition. During a Championship Tournament, “contest” shall be defined as the next single game.

 

Section 6.  Equipment

A.  The MWPA strongly recommends that all water polo players wear a protective mouthpiece for all games, practices, and camps.

B.  The MWPA encourages officials to wear hearing protection, as recommended by their doctors.

C.      Protective/corrective eyewear can be worn in accordance with NFHS rules, as long as they do not seal out water, and they contain no sharp edges or corners. The referee shall be presented with doctor authorization before each game where eyewear is used.

D.     “MWPA Board – approved” Protective headgear may be worn by goalies in all contests. (For list of approved headgear, please contact the board)

 

Section 7. Referee Compensation and Eligibility

A. Officials shall be compensated as follows:

  1. Regular Season – Dual Games:

a.  Two games with two officials; $75 each official totaling $150

b.  Two games with one official; $100

c.  One game with two officials: $65 each official totaling $130

d.  One Game with one official; $75

  1. Regular Season – Tournaments: $30 for JV Tournaments or $35 for Varsity Tournaments- Paid by host site.

a.  District Seeding Tournaments: $40 per game, Paid by host site

b.  District Seeding Tournaments: Officials will be compensated by MWPA same as Post Season

B.  Post Season Tournaments – Officials will be paid by the MWPA:

1.  District Championship Tournaments:  $40 per game, $50 stipend for the head official.

2.  Regional Championship Tournaments:  $50 per game, $15 per game for goal judges, $50 stipend for head official

(i)     Goal judges will be assigned for all games played on Saturday at the Regional Championship Tournaments.

3.  State Championship Tournament: $60 per game, $15 per game for goal judges, $200 stipend for head official.

(i) Goal judges will be assigned for all games played at the State Championship Tournaments.

4.  Officials will be compensated for mileage under the following formula. If the official’s one-way for one-day mileage is from 0-49 miles there is no compensation. If the official’s one-way for one-day mileage is from 50-99 miles the official will be compensated $50. If the official’s one-way for one-day mileage is from 100-149 miles the official will be compensated $100. If the official’s one-way for one-day mileage is 150 miles or more they will be compensated $150.

5.  If the official travels 100 miles or more (round trip) the MWPA will reimburse for the full payment of the hotel but will not exceed $100/official.

B.  Active coaches will not be allowed to officiate during their respective seasons.  This rule pertains to all coaches, assistant coaches, and team managers.  The only exception to this rule would be the officiating of contests at a JV tournament where their team is not participating in any games officiated by the individual in question.

 

Section 8.  Sexual Misconduct Policy

A      The Board will report any act of Sexual Misconduct to the proper authorities (incl. Athletic Director for all schools involved and Police as necessary)

B      As used in these rules, sexual relationships include: (a) sexual touching and (b) non-contact sexual acts such as verbal acts (e.g. a coach discussing his or her sex life with an athlete or a coach asking an athlete about his or her sex life), sexually suggestive electronic or written communications, exposure or voyeurism.  In the event that any MWPA member suspects that a violation of this rule has occurred, that member is required to report such suspicion to MWPA President and board.

C      Every referee, coach, or team representative that will be in direct contact with any MWPA athletes will have passed their school district required sexual harassment, misconduct, and reporting procedure training.  If this is not available, they will be required to pass the “Safesport trained certification” in order to identify, prevent and respond to issues of misconduct.

  1. Certification of completed training will be submitted to the MWPA board no later than the start of their first season, and will be re-submitted upon expiration.

  2. The MWPA recognizes any suspension as extended by associated athletic governing bodies (MHSAA, SafeSport, USA Water Polo, etc.)

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Established August, 2020