Calling Middle

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On an out-of-bounds pull where the receiving team calls middle, can the individual who called middle establish their pivot at the sideline where the disc went out-of-bounds and start play? Does calling middle mean that individual has to take the middle of the field where the disc went out-of-bounds or at the brick mark?

No, once a player has called and signalled for either a "brick" or a "middle," the disc must be put into play at the appropriate site. The rule is detailed in VIII.B.6.

"Middle" means the player puts the disc into play at the middle of the field across from the spot determined by rule IX.H.

"Brick" is straightforward: the player puts the disc into play at the brick mark.

I don't believe that the player who called for the "brick" or the "middle" necessarily has to be the one to put it into play. I might be mistaken.

According to the rules: If somebody on the team calls "brick" then they must play the disc at
the Brick Mark (even if the disc went out at half-field). If the team calls "middle", then they
have to play it at the middle of the playing field proper closest to where it went out (even if
it went out past the Brick).

Now, I think everybody who plays should treat a "brick" call and a "middle" call exactly the
same, despite what it says in the rules. Meaning that if a player calls "brick" on a pull that
goes out half-way down the field, you should let them take it at the middle of the field at the
mid-point of the field, not force them to take it at the brick.

You don't have to though. If you set your mark at the appropriate spot, 10m away from the
brick mark after the player called "middle", don't feel bad calling a Travel if the thrower tries
to be cheeky by throwing from the brick mark.

Where there is not room for interpretation is allowing the person to throw from the sideline.
That is against the rules.

--

VIII.B.6.d) If the disc initially hits an out-of-bounds area, the receiving team may put the
disc into play:
(1) at the spot determined by IX.H; or
(2) after signaling for a brick/middle by fully extending one hand overhead and calling "brick"
or "middle" before gaining possession of the disc,
(a) at the brick mark closest to the end zone that the receiving team is defending if "brick"
was called, or
(b) at the spot on the long axis of the playing field proper nearest to the spot determined by
IX.H if "middle" was called.

The rule as I read says 'at the spot on the long axis of the playing field proper nearest to the spot determined by
IX.H if "middle" was called.' It doesn't say that the disc must be brought to the middle spot on the field, just if 'middle' was called.

So if someone else on the receiving team (other than the player going to pick the disc up) calls middle/brick/whatever, does the player picking up have to play it there, or can they tap it in on the sideline?

you can, if you like, NOT call middle or brick and play it from the sideline...

Deuce, I'm not sure what you're trying to say there.

It middle is called, you take it to the middle (half-way between the sidelines even with the IX.H spot). If middle is not called, you don't. Or is that what you're saying?

Hey Deuce,

The "long axis of the field" is an imaginary line down the middle of the field (from endzone to endzone). So when you call "middle," you must put the disc into play somewhere on that line.

The exact spot on that line is determined by IX.H.

On defense, I was taught to go to the sideline where the disc went out of bounds and walk with the opposing player to the middle of the field, regardless of whether middle was called or not. I have seen it in the past where a player has called middle, and takes advantage of the defence gingerly making their way to the middle of the field. Not the most spirited thing to do, but I want to make sure that we don't get caught by that type of play.

What you describe is good defensive practice, Deuce. Sometimes it's the sideline that has yelled "middle" when they shouldn't have. Sometimes somebody has yelled "out" instead.

But if you are positive that an offensive player made the hand signal and called "middle," then you can let down your guard, because the offense no longer has the choice to put the disc into play on the sideline.

Even so, you should stay close to your mark, because the offense does not need to wait for a defender to tap the disc into play, regardless of the call.

Ah, sorry. I think the first couple replies were specifically for the situation where somebody
called middle/brick, and just assumed that you'd already known the other side of the coin.

The receiving team always has a choice whether they want to call brick/middle or not. If not,
they can take it from the sideline. It just seems that everybody always calls brick/middle,
though there are some times where that's not smart.

If any player on the receiving team makes the brick/middle call, then it must be played from
the brick/middle.

I often tell my teams not to make a brick/middle call unless they're picking up the pull. I'll
often go to retrieve the pull OB, and before I pick up the disc, decide whether or not to play
it from the brick/middle. You'd be surprised how often a cup will just go straight to the middle
of the field, even if nobody called brick/middle. I'll simply grab the disc, walk to the sideline
where it went out, tap it down, and get a free throw. There's nothing against the rules (or
unspirited) about that. That's called good Offense and bad Defense.

That's similar to when picking up a turned-over disc in the End Zone. You have the *option*
of walking it to the end zone line, but you don't have to. A few weeks ago, the disc was in
the back corner after a TO, I walked to it, the Mark walked to the front corner for a trap. I
picked the disc up and made a free throw. The Mark was genuinely being helpful and said
"you can walk it up you know". I smiled and said "yeah, but why would I want to walk it to
you?". A light-bulb went off above the Mark's head and he replied "good point!"

"Even so, you should stay close to your mark, because the offense does not need to wait for a defender to tap the disc into play, regardless of the call."

*gasp*

I didn't believe this when I read it, but it's true! (VIII.B.10.) I even went back and checked 10th edition and the rule was the same then. Why was I under the *mistaken* impression that if an offensive player called "middle"/"brick" that the disc had to be put into play with a check? Was this ever the case?

As an aside, if the offensive team calls "middle"/"brick" and doesn't take the disc to the middle of the field before throwing, the correct call would be "travel'"?

To my knowledge (which dates back to the 9th ed only, I think Mortakai was playing pre-1st
eddition :p ), you only needed the D to tap the disc on a Check when play was Stopped (big-S).
Play never Stops on a Pull going OB, so no it hasn't been required for a long time (if ever).

Yes, among other cases, anytime the thrower tries to throw from an inappropriate spot, or fails
to tap the disc to the ground after walking to the appropriate spot (no Defense acknowledgement
neccessary), it is a Travel.

Deuce, was your post inspired by the Likastik vs Buck Fugly game last night at Winona? We were taken off guard when Buck Fugly played an OB pull from the sideline. The thing is, I swear I heard at least one call for 'middle', but had no idea if it was the handler that had called it, I didn't remember seeing the hand signal, and didn't remember the exact rule. So I let it slide.

Question:

It looks like the hand signal is part of the package. So technically, if someone doesn't raise their hand while calling brick/middle, we can call a travel on them if they don't check it in on the sideline?

"It looks like the hand signal is part of the package. So technically, if someone doesn't raise
their hand while calling brick/middle, we can call a travel on them if they don't check it in on
the sideline?"

Absolutely, but prepare for a savage heckling. :)

That would be like calling a travel because the thrower let you tap it instead of bending down
in front of you to tap the ground. There are certain idiosyncratic behaviours that we do which
line up with the spirit, intent, and outcome of the rules, but not the letter of the rules. I think
it's a bit of a waste of time enforcing something like that when it's not giving the other team
any sort of advantage (if they're using the semantics to gain an advantage though, by all
means put a stop).

Actually, I probably wouldn't heckle you (because you'd be absolutely within your right to
make the call), but I'd call every teeny violation you make (you'd be surprised how many
there are that we all do) with tongue firmly in cheek until you begged for mercy.

... going back...

In the 8th, there wasn't even a brick or middle... you either took it at the sideline or asked for a re-pull on an OB pull.

In the 9th, the brick/middle was added, along with the sideline or re-pull choices, and here's what it said as part of the brick/middle:

--> To invoke the "middle/brick rule," the member of the receiving team who is going to receive the throw-off shall fully extend one hand above his/her head and call "middle" or "brick". The player must let the disc hit the ground. On such a call, the offensive player may use a "self check," meaning he/she picks up the disc and the nearest defensive player says "in play." If the nearest player does not immediately say "in play," the offensive player may touch the disc to the ground and yell "disc in play." <--

That's possibly where the "check needed on a brick" thought came in, although it's not quite the same because defensive readiness isn't needed. And it's not clear to me whether the "in play" call was supposed to happen when the thrower gained possession, or later when they arrived at the brick mark. [Isn't it great we now have crystal clear rules? ;p ]

In the 10th, released about 5 years ago (July '03), the re-pull choice was removed, and so was the self-check requirement, and it's been that way since then.

Play on.