Billiards Rules | Recreational Services
The University of Iowa

Billiards Rules

 Rule 1: Facility | Rule 2: Player Eligibility | Rule 3: Team Composition | Rule 4: Match Procedures | Rule 5: Ground Rules

Recent rule changes appear in italicized font.

Rule 1: Facility

  1. This single elimination tournament will be played in Petersen Hall.

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Rule 2: Player Eligibility

  1. All Intramural Sports eligibility rules apply. Please check the Intramural Sports Rules and Regulations carefully.
  2. All players must check-in with their government-issued photo ID or University ID cards with the Supervisor prior to the start of their team’s match.

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Rule 3: Team Composition

  1. This is an open event, so men and women can/will compete with/against one another.
  2. In the Doubles division, in order to qualify for Co-Rec points in the Intramural Sports Points Championship sponsored by Coach's Corner, both a male and a female MUST participate in each round of matches.
  3. Organizations may have unlimited amount of Singles and Doubles teams competing, however only the top two singles and doubles teams for each organization will be awarded Intramural Sports Points Championship sponsored by Coach's Corner points.
  4. Doubles rosters may have up to four people. If a team needs to switch out a player, it must be done prior to the night of the event. Once competition begins, substitutions cannot be made.

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Rule 4: Match Procedures

  1. Players can use their own cue sticks, but must use the billiards balls provided by the facility.
  2. A coin toss will determine which team/individual breaks on the first game of the match. The winner of the previous game will break on the second and third games, respectively.
  3. Each match will consist of the best two out of three rounds. 
  4. For Doubles, teams determine the order of throwing for their own members.
  5. Forfeit time will be 10 minutes from scheduled match time.

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Rule 5: Ground Rules

  1. The format is best two-out-of-three games. The first team to win two games wins the match.
  2. Standard eight ball rules will apply in any situations not covered below:
    • Any ball(s) pocketed on the opening break will designate stripes or solids to the leading player. If an even number of balls are pocketed then the table is open. If an uneven number of balls are pocketed the greater number of balls pocketed (stripes or solids) will designate the leading player. 
    • Shots must be called. “Slop” shots will result in loss of turn. To call a shot a player must announce the ball and its intended pocket but not "kisses" off other balls. 
    • To win, a/an team/individual must pocket all balls of the solids or stripes, followed by the eight ball in a called pocket. Pocketing the eight ball before all solids or stripes will result in loss of game.
    • The eight ball shall not be neutral; it cannot be used in any combination to pocket a ball.
    • Scratching on an attempt to pocket any ball other than the eight ball will result in ball in hand.
    • Scratching on an attempt to pocket the eight ball will result in the loss of that game.
    • Scratching on the break does not result in immediate loss. Play shall resume with the opposing team’s possession in the kitchen. Knocking the cue ball off the table results in loss of turn, ball to kitchen.
    • Pocketing the eight ball on the break will result in the replacement of the ball on the table opposite of the kitchen.
    • A player that does not make a legal shot, meaning drive an object ball to a cushion OR drive the cue ball to a cushion after striking the team's own object ball, will lose his/her turn. The opponent will receive the cue ball in hand and place the cue ball anywhere on the table in preparation for the next shot.