Coaches challenging Plays

So, I was going through the forums as usual, when I stumbled upon a question I do not have an answer for. Can a coach challenge a play or decision made by the refs? I know last year in Starstruck, it was illegal, and (slightly) emphasized and (slightly) enforced. But I just looked through the game manual and couldn’t pinpoint a rule that said anything about it. I have heard that it is illegal and only students may do this, but I have no real evidence.

P.S. I really just skimmed through the manual, paying most attention to the rules <G1> through <G18>. Also used ctrl + f for “coach” and “teacher” but nothing came up.

I don’t think the question is “can” a coach challenge a decision but it is “SHOULD” a coach challenge a ruling. I’ve evolved as a coach and rarely feel the need unless the rules are clearly broken. For the the most part, I let the team argue and and advocate for themselves.

Yes, it is within the rules for a coach to argue a ruling.

I agree. Unless the rules have very clearly been broken and the ref’s do not believe the students, or in an emergency are the only time coaches should be able to challenge a play. It is the student’s learning experience, and they need to learn to do something about their situation, not expect an adult to do it for them. There definitely people out there who abuse this and, although it is a winning tactic, it is nasty. It isn’t fair for the respectful, quiet students to be over ruled because a coach is more assertive or even a little aggressive in the way they challenge warnings.

Note: I am NOT targeting a team hear for anything. Just stating how it would feel if such a thing happen.


Adults are not part of the drive team. In addition, if the adult’s conduct reflects poorly on the team, the might not be considered for any judged awards.

As the head ref for a lot of events in my state, absolutely not.

I make it a point to make things student-centered, and don’t talk to adult members of teams, only to student drive team members.

I also don’t review video or photos.

I could see coaches abusing the ability to challenge plays. Events would go on forever as there’s that one coach that thinks all the calls are against their team.

This can be a great learning opportunity for students. I have role-played with my students how to approach a referee respectfully, how to cite the rulebook or official forum post, how to respond to what the referee might say, and to thank them for listening.

I have also talked with my teams about how it is better to respectfully approach an opposing team or referee before a mach if you have plans of “calling out” your opponents for a rule violation you have seen in previous matches.