Top 10 ultimate myths

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Hi VUL people,

My name is Ben, I work on the executive committee of the AUM (Montreal's version of the VUL), and am a former VUL player. I'm working on some rule propaganda, here is a file I put together. Consider this a RFQ, feedback is very welcome.

Ultimate: Rule Myths

Myth # 1 - The person who catches the disc is the one who calls in/out.

AKA: “It’s the catchers call!”

Possibly the most oft-quoted non-rule in Ultimate, it is the player on the field with best perspective that makes the call. (XV.E.)

What is the source of this Myth? It is likely from a small passage in the 9th edition of the rules that suggested that perhaps the catcher might have best perspective. Due to the confusion that this line caused, it was removed in the 10th (and current 11th) edition, but it seems that every season this chestnut gets repeated on ultimate fields everywhere.

In fact, in order to make a catch the player is usually looking at the disc – so the catcher rarely has best perspective (who catches a disc while looking at the ground?)… by the same token the defender playing the disc often does not have best perspective either. Out of the 14 players on the field, there should be one who had the best perspective to judge the play. If the person with best perspective is disputed, then send the disc back-to-thrower and play on. (XVI.D.)
EXAMPLE: Player1: “I think I might have been in.” Player2: “I think you might have been out, but I’m not sure.” Player3: “I had a great view of the cones and Player1’s foot, he was out.” Everyone agrees that Player3 had the best view, the call is out. Play on!

(For the definition of best perspective, see Rule II.A.)

Myth #2 - It is not a foul if a player did not intend to foul.

AKA: “I was just going for the disc!”

“Intent” does not enter into the consideration of foul/no-foul. (XIX.G.)

What is the source of this myth? In many other sports “intent” is a very important element in deciding whether a player committed an infraction.

In fact, Ultimate assumes that no one would ever intentionally foul someone – but fouls still happen. A player who is focused on the disc may not realize the position of other players on the field and cause a foul without intending to. Always try to be aware of your surroundings before making a bid on a disc.
SITUATION: A high floater comes in, and a tall defensive player is staring up at the disc while running sideways, in the process of making a defensive play on the disc, he runs into an offensive player who was standing stationary under the spot where the disc was going to arrive, preventing that player from making a play on the disc. Certainly not intentional, but definitely a foul!

Myth #3 - If a person takes more than 3 steps after a catch, it is a travel.

AKA: “You took 5 steps, travel! You have to back up!”

When a player is running too fast when catching a disc to reasonably stop in 3 steps, that is fine. If the player simply keeps moving in the same direction, and stops as quickly as possible without injury, they may then establish a pivot and play. (XV.B. / XVI.J.) Only if crossing the goal-line or side-line while slowing down does one need to back up and put the disc into play. (IX.C.1.)

What is the source of this myth? There is a separate rule that deals with a player who catches then throws a disc without stopping. In that case, the player must throw the disc “before three additional points of contact with the ground are made after possession has been established.” (XV.C.2.)

SITUATION: A player catches the disc on the run and slows down as quickly as possible (in this case, let's say he needs 4 steps) and comes to a stop on his right foot – at which point he establishes a pivot with his left foot, and then steps into his throw with his right (maintaining ground contact with his pivot foot). It will now appear to have been 6 steps total – but not a travel, as he stopped as quickly as possible, established a pivot, and made a legal throw.

Myth #4 – If a player calls “Check Feet!” everyone must stop and look at the feet of the player with the disc.

AKA: “Check Feet, stop!”

Much like yelling “Chicken Soup!” or “Banana Hammock!” the player with the disc is under no requirement to stop, and may simply continue playing. If you think the player is out, call out. If you cannot see if they are in or out, do not make a call. (IX.)

What is the source of this myth? Some players feel like it’s in “bad-spirit” to call a player out, and prefer to stick to something more non-committal (allowing the "possibly out" player the opportunity to call themselves out).

In fact, it is not bad spirit to call someone out if you see that they are out – that's ultimate! On the other hand, if you don’t have a good enough perspective to call someone out, you shouldn’t call anything – it’s not very good to break the flow because you have a “hunch” that the player “might” be out. Trust the other players on the field to make those calls.

SITUATION: Player catches the disc, defender across the field yells “check feet”, the offensive player passes to a teammate in the endzone who scores a point. The point stands.


Myth #5 - If a call is made everyone should stop playing. (Anything that happens after the call is irrelevant.)

AKA: "I would have caught that disc, but I heard someone make a call and I stopped - it should not be a turnover!"

Only the thrower should stop when a call is made! If the thrower does not hear the call and it's thrown anyways, the result of that throw could be crucial to possession. Whether it's"pick!" or "travel!" or "foul!", if you see the disc thrown in the air, you should continue to play until the result of the throw is determined (ie: offensive players should try to catch it, defensive players should try to defend it). (XVI.C.)

What is the source of this myth? It is very natural to stop when a call is made; and "common sense" reasons that if we stop then the play does not count
In fact, the result of that "throw-after-the-call" is very important, and is governed by a set of rules called "continuation". To boil it down, if the defending team calls an infraction and the offensive team throws the disc into the ground, the infraction is ignored and the defending team takes possession (shouting "play on!"). Conversely, if the offensive team calls an infraction, but completes their pass, the pass stands (shouting "play on!").
Note: In these "play on!" scenarios there should be no stoppage of play, unless there are players who do not understand the continuation rule - in which case one should stop and explain the rule. Also, contest/no-contest is not relevant in the case of a "play on!" situation.

SITUATION: Offensive player catches the disc, and while decelerating runs 3 steps into the endzone and does not back up.(XI.B.) A defender calls "travel!", the offensive player throws the disc but it hits the ground. "Play on!" The travel is ignored, the defense takes possession.

SITUATION: A pick is called, the thrower throws a long pass that sails out of bounds. "Play on!" The pick is ignored, the defense takes possession.

SITUATION: The thrower hucks the disc, the marker slaps his hand before release and the thrower calls "foul!", the disc flies upside down across the field but is miraculously caught by another offensive player! "Play on!" The foul is ignored, the offense continues its play with no stoppage.

Myth #6 - If a player leans/stands over a disc, they must play it.
AKA: "Once you start the motion, you must pick it up!"

If the disc is live, and a player begins the motion of picking up a disc, they are free to change their mind.

What is the source of this myth? There are certain situations where a player must maintain or regain possession of the disc. If a disc is thrown out of bounds and an offensive player retrieves it, that player must put the disc in play - they cannot just put it down on the line and run away. Also, if a player calls a time-out, that same player must put the disc back into play.
In fact, many players will bend over to pick up a disc and then be told to "run-through" by their slow-footed handlers who are trailing behind the play. This is fine. Also, some cutters like to slow down at the disc as a kind of "fake", and then make a cut - this is also fine.

SITUATION: A cutter stops at the disc, leans down, and then darts into the corner of the endzone. A teammate picks up the disc, and hits them in the endzone. Point.

Myth #7 - Being on the line is "in".

AKA: "I'm in, I'm on the line!"

The sideline is out. If a player has their foot on the sideline, or one-foot-in-one-foot-out, they are out (IX.A.) The goal-line is not in the endzone.(III.C.) If a player has a foot on the goal-line line, the disc is still live and they should continue trying to score. Same for straddling the endzone line.

What is the source of this myth? Perhaps because in soccer, the sideline is considered in. In football, the goal-line is considered part of the endzone.
In fact, if the player makes sure to touch the ground with only 1 foot while catching the disc, and only brings down the other foot after the catch is complete, it is only the position of the first foot that matters! (IX.C.1.)

SITUATION: A player makes a catch near the goal-line, and remains motionless. He states that he's not sure if he's in. One of the players checks the cones and can see that the player's feet are right along the endzone line. "Not in!" Continue play with a check-in.

Myth #8 - A marker is allowed to take any position as long as his torso is 1 disc space away from the thrower's body.
AKA: "I'm a disc-space away, I'm legal!"

One of the changes with the new 11th edition includes a change to how the "disc space" violation applies. If an imaginary line between the marker's two hands, or the marker's two feet, is closer than 1 disc from the thrower it is now a disc space violation. (XIV.B.3.)

What is the source of this myth? The previous editions of the rules of ultimate.
In fact, this rule was developed because sometimes players would straddle the thrower's leg, preventing a pivot. Or sometimes someone with long arms would simply "wrap-around" the thrower and remain technically legal while essentially shutting down the thrower. Ultimate should be fun, and it should favour throwing and catching! This was a great rule improvement!

SITUATION: The marker starts counting, at "stall 3!" he begins straddling the throwers leg. The thrower calls "disc space!", the marker backs up and continues counting at "stall 2!"

Myth #9 - If an offensive player stands over a disc without picking it up, the marker may immediately start the stall count.

AKA: "Stalling one! Stalling two! Stalling three!"

If an offensive player is standing over the disc but not picking it up, the offensive player has to announce "delay of game!", wait 2 seconds, and then announce "disc in!" and then they may start counting. (XIII.A.5.)

What is the source of this myth? This myth was actually the correct procedure in the 10th edition of the rules. The 11th edition has removed the "teeth" from this rule, but it still gives the marker an option for getting the offense moving.
In fact, this rule gives the thrower an opportunity to look around for at least 2 seconds before picking up the disc - take advantage, call a stack, get that clogger out of the lane, and play.

SITUATION: Potential thrower stands over the disc, marker calls "delay!", 2 seconds later the marker calls "disc in! stalling one!" the thrower picks up the disc and play proceeds.

Myth #10 - Whenever an offensive player carries a disc to a spot to put it in play, they must offer the disc to the marker for check-in.

AKA: "Touch it!"

If the disc is live but needs to be put in play, all the thrower needs to do is touch the disc to the ground. This applies for discs retrieved from out-of-bounds and discs advanced (or brought back) to the goal-line. (IX.H.)

What is the source of this myth? When the disc is dead (due to an infraction, time-out, injury, etc) then the disc must be put back into play with a check where the thrower holds the disc out to his mark in order to start the play. Some players have taken to offering the disc to their mark as a matter of course.

In fact, offering the disc to the marker for check-in disadvantages the handler - the marker may delay touching the disc in order to break the offense's flow on the field. Remember, if the disc is live but needs to be moved: simply carry the disc to the appropriate spot and touch the disc to the ground and play.
EXAMPLE: The disc is thrown far out-of-bounds for a turn-over. It is retrieved quickly by the offense who runs to the appropriate spot on the side-line and taps the disc to the ground and immediately strikes a player in the end-zone. Point.

Great start for sure! I've often thought of doing something similar. These are the type of things
that should be on the UPA Rules Blog, but just aren't (not that it's well advertised to begin with).

Some thoughts after a very brief scan:

--Myth 1--

"Possibly the most oft-quoted non-rule in Ultimate, it is the player on the field with best
perspective that makes the call. (XV.E.)"

Actually it's not the player with the best perspective's call. It's the call of *anybody* who saw it
clearly. If, and only if, it was *unclear* to everybody (not just if there's a disagreement) does the
player with the best perspective make the call.

I hate this rule. The only time the player with the 'best perspective' makes the call is if everybody
*including that player* didn't see the play clearly. Stupid.

--Myth 3--

It would be even better if you were to include the sub-myth "you have 3 steps". Any time you
hear "you have 3 steps" you know the player shouting that doesn't know the rules, but likes
calling them. Either the player mistakenly thinks you *must* stop after three steps (not correct,
as you pointed out, you have as many as you need to slow to a stop), or the player thinks you get
three steps to throw the disc without slowing.

Actually you have *less than* three steps. Meaning "you have 2 steps" to release the disc without
slowing.

--Myth 7--

I'd love if you were to include the sub-myth "I'm in on that cone!" The line is defined as the direct
line between the two nearest cones, not any extension of two different cones. Two cones always
make a straight line. It doesn't matter if your field looks like charlie brown's sweater, it doesn't
matter if the field is not a rectangle, the only cones that matter are the two on either side of you.
"I'm in on that cone!" is all but saying "I'm OB!".

Also, you should definitely note that on an unlined field, the "line" is the width of the cones, often
15cm wide. On a lined field it's the width of the actual marking. Even if you're only touching a
small little bit of the line with your first point of contact, and the rest of you is way IB, you're still
OB.

--Myth 9--

The new 2-second delay of game warning applies any time a player is deliberately slowing the
game down. Meaning, even if they are standing 3m from the disc, directing traffic, you can invoke
this rule.

Also, if the player doing the delaying stops delaying, you don't get to start the stall. They don't
have to pick it up within 2 seconds, they just have to stop delaying. Almost any reaction is
considered as stopping delaying, including walking to the disc, walking away from the disc so
another player can be the handler, etc. The teeth truly were taken out of this rule, though the 10
and 20 second DoG stalls still apply.

"Possibly the most oft-quoted non-rule in Ultimate, it is the player on the field with best perspective that makes the call. (XV.E.)"

I understand your meaning, but this phrasing is a little awkward-- it makes it seem as if XV.E is "the most oft-quoted non-rule in ultimate." I also think it's worth clarifying that a call, when the outcome of the play is "unclear" (I've, always interpreted this word in a more general sense) falls to the player with best perspective.

You might also consider briefly contrasting rule XV.E against XVI.D.

Temple, re: Myth 9. Does this 2 second delay not only apply to a player standing over the disc, not one 3m (or more) away? At that point, I believe it's the 10 second delay. I'm sure "standing over the disc" could be up for debate, but I think it's reasonable to assume that it's if they're able to pick the disc up and establish their pivot at that point on the field.

Injured Ninja: "Temple, re: Myth 9. Does this 2 second delay not only apply to a player standing
over the disc, not one 3m (or more) away? At that point, I believe it's the 10 second delay. I'm
sure "standing over the disc" could be up for debate, but I think it's reasonable to assume that
it's if they're able to pick the disc up and establish their pivot at that point on the field."

No, there used to be a rule about 'standing over the disc' but it was replaced with the following:

--
XIII.A.5.If an offensive player unnecessarily delays putting the disc into play in violation of Rule
XIX.B, a defender within 3m of the point the disc is to be put into play may issue a "delay of
game” warning instead of calling a violation. If the behavior in violation of Rule XIX.B is not
immediately stopped, the marker may initiate and continue a stall count, regardless of the
actions of the offense. In order to invoke this rule, after announcing "delay of game," the
marker must give the offense two seconds to react to the warning, and then announce "disc in"
before initiating the stall count.

Note:

XIX.B) It is the responsibility of all players to avoid any delay when starting, restarting, or
continuing play. This includes standing over the disc or taking more time than reasonably
necessary to put the disc into play.
--

"Unnecessarily delays" and "more time than is reasonably necessary" includes standing over the
disc, but it also includes any other unnecessary delay tactic, such as standing just aside from the
disc (which is the same thing, but you used to get away with).

In practice, this rule is effectively a legislated "hurry up!". Rarely does the Offense not change
the behaviour which then would disallow the D from starting the count.

I love this thread, everyweek I listen to the same ultimate myths being called.

The best one i've been heard/been called on so far this season was I can't throw the disc while until i've come to a complete stop.

I love the new delay of game rule but its going to be so hard to apply with out dispute.

... and by " 'new' delay of game rule", of course you mean the one that's over 3 years old.

For Myth #2, I think part of the confusion is that some people mistake "incidental" for "accidental". While I know that at least one dictionary actually includes "unintentional" in one of its meanings for "incidental", the widely accepted meaning of "incidental" is "not relevant" or "not significant to".

Seem to have gotten most of the easy ones. Some others I have heard:

1. If you run out of bounds you can't be the next person to catch the disc. (This isn't the NFL!)

2. When an Offensive player is backing up in an attempt to catch a disc there is almost always a foul called when they run into the better positioned D who is standing still. Hate that! "You hit me when I was going for the disc!" "No, you hit me, but you were running backwards because you can't read a disc"

3. After calling an Injury Time Out the player who is injured needs to leave the field. That is not true if the injury is due to contact with an opposing player.

m2c

They don't have to leave the field if it's their own fault, or their teammate's fault, either. Their team is just charged with a team time out (and turned over if they don't have any left).

I always bring a rule book to the field with me to use between points and after the game if disputes arise. I'd recommend printing off these myths to have as quick reference addendum.

My favourite myth is the start time of the game is the one posted on the VUL site. ;)

@Squiggsy

Nail on the head there bro. Because often after a "dispute" (even friendly ones where both players agree to disagree and BTT), players often spend 2-3 points searching through the rule book for that illusive rule. We're hoping this list would be a great companion to the rule book for quick sideline resolutions.

@Everyone

Myth heard in New Brunswick this past weekend: You only have to touch a live disc down when it goes out-of-bounds. Quickly followed by "I know the rules better than you ever will."

We certainly can't include them all, but we feel these might be the 10 most common rule myths. Please keep suggesting other ones you feel should be in this list (we are not bound to keep them to 10).

JDD By JDD

Just to clarify injury substitutions:
- if the injury was caused by an opposing player, they do not have to leave the field (but have the option to do so).
- if the injury was not caused by an opposing player, they may either substitute off, or take a team timeout if they want to stay on the field.
If the team has no team timeouts remaining then according to the rules they could stay on and subject their team to a turnover, but in practice it would be preferable to just substitute off the injured player rather than take a turnover. I can only see that maybe being an issue if the team has no subs.

themindset,

I'm not sure what myth you're alluding to, but if the disc is live then all an offensive player
taking possession of an OB disc needs to do is to establish a pivot at the appropriate position
(otherwise it's a travel) and touch the disc to the ground. There is no need or reason for the
defense to do anything, including a check or acknowledgement.

I assumed he was referring to the idea that you "only have to tap when it was OB".

That's not correct. There are a few times where you carry the disc, but it never went OB (run into
the end zone, pick up a turn over in the end zone). Those cases require a ground tap too.

I assumed he was referring to the "I know the rules better than you ever will" myth.

Interesting. I had read the myth as "if the disc goes OB, all you have to do is touch it to the
ground."

Top 10 VUL Myths:

12. Being offside has some consequence
11. Art once had hair and was a half-way decent ultimate player
10. It's important to throw to women
9. The existence of the fabled "Swarm D"
8. SNARK used to be funny
7. Top 10 lists are more humourouse when they have more than 10 items
6. TFP was good enough to win a single a UPA Championship
5. One Word: Spud
4. SNARK used to have a website until the VUL got too cheap to pay for it
3. Winning Tuesday Division 1 will get your team some respect
2. You know who the editors of SNARK are/were (3 were killed in 2007 in a tragic blimp accident)
1. If web geeks with nothing better to do explain the proper interpretation of the rules to each other often enough on a barely read forum, everyone will eventually get it

SPLAT is a fun game

Re: Myth 1 -- "If the person with best perspective is disputed, then send the disc back-to-thrower and play on."

I don't understand this one for plays in the end zone, where it's disputed whether the player made first contact in the end zone or not. It seems the only resolution prescribed in the rules is to send the disc back to the thrower, but that only makes sense on a disputed OB call. Shouldn't the player in the end zone retain the disc but just move back to the line and throw from there? That is what is done in practice.

The other problem with the "best perspective" rule is when one jerky player insists that they had the best perspective (even though they were the mark of the receiving player and were watching the disc, not the landing; or were halfway down the field) and loudly overrules anyone else instead of actually discussing who might have had the best perspective.

What should be done in that case? What usually happens is the jerky player "wins" and the receiver must move the disc back to the line and make a throw from there and everyone else who disagreed with him feels uncomfortable and frustrated. I think that is why the "catcher decides" myth is perpetuated -- it actually seems fairer to let each random receiver make the call rather than always letting that one jerky player bully his way into making the call.

Jennifer: "The other problem with the "best perspective" rule is when one jerky player
insists that they had the best perspective (even though they were the mark of the receiving
player and were watching the disc, not the landing; or were halfway down the field) and
loudly overrules anyone else instead of actually discussing who might have had the best
perspective."

First off, that's not what the best perspective rule is. If anybody clearly sees the play, then
best perspective *never matters*.

Anybody who sees the play clearly makes a call. Only if nobody saw it clearly does the player
with best perspective make the call, but even then, if the two teams can't agree then it goes
back to thrower (or back to the end-zone line).

--

Jennifer: "What should be done in that case? What usually happens is the jerky player
"wins" and the receiver must move the disc back to the line and make a throw from there
and everyone else who disagreed with him feels uncomfortable and frustrated."

That's a bad attitude to go into a self-refereed sport with. The player made their call based
on what they saw clearly (or they were cheating, but assuming they're cheating will
guarantee you will be a frustrated ultimate player). Your version of what you saw is no better
or worse than their version of what they saw (and can no way be said to be more or less
accurate).

You really should treat every call as valid, even (and especially!) the ones you think are
wrong. If you start thinking 'they were wrong, so therefor they were cheating' then don't
you see how the other player could think the exact thing about you? When two players
make opposite calls, you have two choices: 1) assume both players saw it differently, back
to thrower, or 2) both players assume the other is cheating, back to thrower.

Do you see how it's the same result either way? Assuming the other player is cheating only
affects the enjoyment of the game, not the outcome.

--

Jennifer: "I think that is why the "catcher decides" myth is perpetuated -- it actually seems
fairer to let each random receiver make the call rather than always letting that one jerky
player bully his way into making the call."

The person who catches the disc is quite often the player with the *absolute worst* view of
the play. You can't look at the disc, and your foot, and the two cones 180 degrees apart and
on exact opposite sides of you. The player who catches the disc, may be relatively sure which
point of contact was first, and sometimes where that first contact was (but often not even
that), but on a close play they can just about *never* see the play clearly enough to judge
that they were IB or OB.

Also, I detect a serious misunderstanding of how the self-refereed sport works. Making a call
when you saw clearly what happened is never "bullying". It's being an honest referee. It's the
responsibility of each player to make the calls that they see clearly (for or against their
team). Wanting to overrule what one player saw clearly and called would be bullying.

Thinking that what you saw was 'more correct' than what another person saw, and thinking
they are being a jerk for seeing it differently is definitely poor spirit.

I don't think you can conclude that I have poor spirit based on my post and I didn't say that seeing a play differently makes someone a jerk. I said that sometimes there are jerky players who will bully their way into making every call themselves no matter where they are on the field, ignoring others who believed they saw the play better, even people on their own team. I understand that the best spirit is to just accept a call calmly and contest if you saw it differently, no matter how rudely someone makes a call and no matter how questionable you think their call is. I just wondered if there was a better way to deal with it than just continuing to accept their attitude as your team quietly seethes.

I think you're being unrealistic if you don't believe that there are occasionally players who impose their questionable view of events on everyone else and will hear no opposing view, and will yell at others if they try to make a different call. And it's funny how these kinds of players seem to get eagle vision and eyes in the back of their heads once the opposing team is close to winning.

Jennifer: "I don't think you can conclude that I have poor spirit based on my post"

I didn't, I said that "Thinking that what you saw was 'more correct' than what another person
saw, and thinking they are being a jerk for seeing it differently is definitely poor spirit."

If you want to apply that to you, so be it.

Jennifer: "I didn't say that seeing a play differently makes someone a jerk. I said that
sometimes there are jerky players who will bully their way into making every call themselves no
matter where they are on the field, ignoring others who believed they saw the play better, even
people on their own team."

Here's the thing that it seems like you're missing. If a player sees a play clearly, they should
make the call. Period, full stop. There's nothing "jerky" or "bullying" about seeing a play and
making a call, even if some or most other players disagree.

That is an essential component to understanding Spirit of the Game.

If the player making the call didn't actually see the play clearly, and they still make a call, then
they're cheating. Cheating is of course unspirited, but cheating is very different from making a
call that you (or somebody else) disagrees with.

--

Jennifer: "I think you're being unrealistic if you don't believe that there are occasionally players
who impose their questionable view of events on everyone else and will hear no opposing view,
and will yell at others if they try to make a different call."

See, now you're moving the goal posts. If somebody is yelling at others and is unwilling to hear
an opposing view, they are both unspirited and cheating. That is quite clear, and completely
separate from whether they are "imposing their questionable view of events".

Remember, "imposing a questionable view of events" is exactly what you're doing when you are
making the opposite call as that person (assuming nobody is cheating).

Now, bearing in mind that whether you assume a person is cheating or not results in the
*identical* outcome to every play, you have a choice to make:

1) Assume people who are making a 'questionable' call (and how nice that you know what
*really* happened!) are being jerky, cheating, and otherwise bullying the game.

2) Assume the person saw it differently and that is the reason they are making the call. Know
that their view of the play is no better or worse than anybody else's that saw it clearly, and send
it back. Revel in the Back To Thrower, the very lubrication that allows the sport to be played.

Remember again that whether you choose 1) or 2), the outcome of the play is the same, but
your enjoyment of the game, your attitude toward the other team, and their reaction to your
attitude (ah, the dreaded SOTG death-spiral) is very much affected by which one you choose.

So, which one do you choose? Yes it really is that easy to avoid the spirit-spiral.

--

You suggested I don't believe that there are people who cheat in the VUL. That's not the case.
The truth is that I've encountered *very* few of them. Once, maybe twice a game I'll encounter
somebody who makes a call that I'm 100% sure is wrong, but I'm not so arrogant as to assume
that my 100% certainty is better than their own 100% certainty of the opposite.

No, only once, maybe twice a year I'll encounter somebody that actually makes me think they
are cheating. I'm sure there may have been a number of people that made an opposite call to
me that actually were cheating, but I didn't see that (you find what you're looking for).

Which VUL do you want to play in? The one with more or less cheaters? The choice is yours.

Temple: There's nothing "jerky" or "bullying" about seeing a play and making a call, even if some or most other players disagree.

That really depends on if the team you're playing against actually realizes this and knows both the rules of the game, and the whole idea behind spirit.

Our teams have averaged 3-5 "calls" per game (or thereabouts), simple line/out calls, fouls for contact before releasing the disc, or for being pushed/bumped when making a catch. Each and every time the calls were argued vehemently by the other team instead of simply contested. The calls all came at varying points in the game, none of them being very pivotal in any way.

The end result was, the other team just assumed we were cheating based solely on the fact that we were making calls to begin with. They truly believed we were "bullying" them just by making calls. This attitude has appeared anywhere from division 2 to division 6. It seems to me that players are believing: "You're making a call, you are cheating, end of story."

The lack of knowledge of the general rules of the game is astounding. I think the sport has grown so fast, so quickly (at least in this city) that teams are being put together containing a vast majority of people who make little to no effort in reading the rules to begin with, and then actually learning/understanding them (I might be making a big assumption here). A lot of players I've met want to show up and run around in the sun and have fun, but that inherent competitiveness from previous team sport experiences comes through, and that drive to win at all cost comes forward.

Captains might seem overwhelmed and might not spend very much time with their players outside of game situations, with little time to practice or discuss the rules. Once games have begun and issues come up, the "we'll discuss it later" argument comes up, but later never comes.

This isn't always the case, but over the 7 years of being a captain, I've seen more and more teams adopt this "you can't call that/you're cheating/we're here to win and win only" attitude.

Alright, Temple, let me define my terms, as it seems that we are disagreeing mostly because I've been imprecise.

The problem I'm talking about IS the player you see 1 or 2 times per year, who "imposes their view" in an actual bullying manner -- i.e. by shouting down others (their own team and the other team) instead of engaging in the short civil discussions that usually happen when trying to determine who saw a play. I suppose you're right that this is unrelated to the bullying, but often when someone displays this behaviour you also may genuinely suspect he's making a call just because the other team is about to win and he doesn't like it, not because he really saw it clearly (and you suspect this because he's done it on each of the last 3 plays, to much murmuring of disagreement from both teams).

We once had one of these players on my own team and so I sympathize with the captains who deal with these players every game. It is very difficult to handle this issue, either on the field or off. It's pretty hard to disarm someone who's shouting in the moment, so generally you just back off and contest and move on. The worst option, but one people sometimes succumb to, is to shout back, which makes everyone feel bad. As Tubster said, most teams meet only to play and are not all good friends, so it's unlikely that you'll find an opportunity to discuss their attitude outside the game.

So, my original query is, essentially, what do you do when you encounter this (admittedly fairly rare) specimen? I was actually motivated to post this because we did meet one of these people in one of our recent games. As a captain, but not the captain of this person's team, I wanted to know what I can actually do in the moment to somewhat defuse the situation so that my teammates don't get too irritated and start choosing the bad option of yelling back at the guy.

Jennifer: "So, my original query is, essentially, what do you do when you encounter this (admittedly
fairly rare) specimen? "

What do you do with cheaters?

I like these options:

1) Don't play with them, cap the game, give them the win, whatever.

2) Turn the other cheek.

Anything else will ultimately reduce the fun of everybody involved.

There's nothing that can stop a cheater from cheating. The only thing you can change is how it
affects you.

Of course it's irritating. But it's your choice in whether or not it's going to ruin your night.

Actually there's a third option, heckle the player mercilessly, but that only works if the cheater (and
his teammates) have played long enough to recognize the difference between heckling and
arguing/picking a fight. I usually save this for when I've played with/against most of the players on
the cheaters team quite a bit.

Jennifer,

You've been temple-ized, so I'm going to shorten this whole discussion down.

1. "So, my original query is, essentially, what do you do when you encounter this (admittedly fairly rare) specimen?"

Stay calm.

2. "As a captain, but not the captain of this person's team, I wanted to know what I can actually do in the moment to somewhat defuse the situation so that my teammates don't get too irritated and start choosing the bad option of yelling back at the guy.

Try calling a time-out, or waiting until halftime, and talking to the opposing team's captain. As you said, members of this player's own team seem to be aware of the problem. Sometimes a short talk with the other captain along the lines of "player X's behaviour is creating an atmosphere that is not fun, and we're really just here to have fun" is enough to break the log-jam of frustration, and allow the other captain to see clearly what's going on, and have a nice little talk. I've known players like this, and you know what? They are not all bad. Often they just need a little perspective, maybe even to be benched for a couple of points, and after the game over beers they'll even admit "Yeah, I was being a douche."

3. "you also may genuinely suspect he's making a call just because the other team is about to win and he doesn't like it"

Then you genuinely suspect the player of cheating. If this is the case, you have recourse through your league. Although I live and play in Montreal, I'm sure the VUL has a committee similar to our Spirit Committee. Make a report to them after the game, let them know what happened and how this player impacted your team's enjoyment of the game. Provide lots of objective detail, and then forget about it. If/when the Spirit Committee gets lots of reports about the same player on the same team doing the same bs, well, they will take some kind of action.

themindset: "You've been temple-ized, so I'm going to shorten this whole discussion down."

You took 350 words to answer the query that I responded to in 150.

A rare win for Temple brevity, but good old irony is once again taking a victory lap.