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Hello.

Alright, so this is my last summer before I go off to college, and it's unlikely I'll have much free time to do any more projects for the concepts forum. But I do have time this summer for one final series. I've always wanted to do my own imaginary sports league. Raysox's Yakball was the most in-depth and detailed new sport thread we've had here. There were a few copycats, but none of them felt very well thought-out. I've had an idea for this new sport in my head for quite sometime, but I never really went anywhere with it. The idea is a team sport using paddles/racquets. We have tennis, squash, racquetball, and any number of variants, but no true team sports. What I want to create here is a face-paced team sport that is (as far as I know) unlike any other.

I'll include my full synopsis, rules, etc in spoiler tags below. Here's a brief explanation:

The sport is called bounceball. 6 players per team each have a paddle, and play both offense and defense, with no goalkeepers. The goal is just that, to score a goal by getting a 5" rubber ball into the goal using their paddle. The game is played on a hockey rink-sized court with indoor soccer-like goals. The court is angled rather than rounded. The court is "sunk" into the ground beneath the crowd about 10 feet. This means there is a 10' wall surrounding the entire court, with see-through netting above that (like a hockey rink). This is meant to encourage passes/shots off the walls. Like basketball there are 2-pt and 3-pt lines. There is no clock. The first team to score 15 points wins. Here's a rough example of what a bounceball court would look like:

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Basic Rules

  • 6 players on the court per team
  • 12-15 total players per team (including bench)
  • 3 officials, one at court-level, two in Official’s Boxes
  • no running clock, first team to 15 points wins
  • Court dimensions: 200’ x 85’. This is the same size as a hockey rink, but with angled corners rather than rounded ones.
  • The goals are 14’ wide and 7’ tall. The goals recede into the wall about 6’.
  • The goals have a slight downward slope away from the court so that once the ball hits the back of the the net, it doesn’t roll back onto the court
  • The game is played “beneath” the crowd. The court is entirely surrounded by a 10’ wall, and above that is see-through netting like those found in hockey arenas. Imagine if a hockey game were pushed down into the ground 10 ft. That’s where a bounceball court would be.
  • Team benches are at court-level behind see-through netting. This allows the coach/bench players to be heard, and also prevents the ball from flying out-of-bounds into the bench.
  • Substitutes must check in at the referee’s box before being let onto the court.
  • Courts are traditionally made of a hard rubber material (think volleyball courts).

Equipment

  • each player plays with one paddle, no larger than 18” by 10”
  • paddles are made out of a plastic material with a light rubber coating
  • ball is 5” lightweight rubber ball (think Skyball, but slightly bigger and not quite as bouncy)

Objective

  • The objective is to get the ball across the goal line and into the goal, like many sports (soccer, hockey, handball, etc)
  • The ball may be struck with any part of the body, including a player’s free hand
  • Players may only use their free hand to strike the ball if necessary, it may not be palmed or picked up from the ground
  • There are no goalkeepers. Each team fields 6 players at a time, all of whom play both offense and defense.

Gameplay

  • A bounceball game starts with a tip-off like a basketball game. The bench official tosses the ball straight up and returns to his/her box as quickly as possible.
  • The only other time a tip-off will be used is in the case of offsetting fouls.
  • A goal is scored when the ball crosses the goal line regardless of who last touched the ball
  • The ball may be struck with any part of the body, including a player’s free hand
  • Players may only use their free hand to strike the ball if necessary, it may not be palmed or picked up from the ground
  • There are 3 types of goals that can be scored. 1-point, 2-point, and 3-point goals.
  • 1 point is awarded for scoring a goal in which the ball is last struck inside the 50 ft arc
  • 2 points are awarded for scoring a goal in which the ball is last struck behind the 50 ft arc and inside of the half-court line
  • 3 points are awarded for scoring a goal in which the ball is last struck behind the half-court line
  • To determine where a ball is last struck, referees look at where the players feet last touch the ground, not where the ball is (just like a 3-pointer in basketball)
  • After a goal is scored, the ball may be retrieved from the goal by the defensive side. The retrieving player may bounce the ball once with their hand (like a tennis serve) before putting it in play.
  • The retrieving player must wait to play the ball until the closest official gives them the green light. (They will literally have a green light beneath each referee’s box.)
  • After scoring a goal, all players from the scoring side must stay behind the defensive zone line until the retrieving defensive player puts the ball in play again.
  • There is no running clock in bounceball. The first team to score 15 points wins (win by 2). This is to prevent stalling and force the team in the lead to always be on the attack.

Officiating

  • There are 4 officials. One bench official, and three referees. Because bounceball is such a fast-paced game, no officials are on the court. This is to prevent congestion and interference with the ball’s path.
  • One official, the bench official, is at court-level between the two team benches. Their job is to check in/out substitutions, award timeouts, and be ready to enter the court at any time to throw a tip-off or break up altercations.
  • The other 3 officials will be opposite the court-level official in special Referee’s Boxes. Their job is to determine whether a goal is worth 1, 2, or 3 points. If it is too close to call, they are encouraged to view the instant replay, which is available on-screen in their respective boxes.
  • The three referees are the ones who make all of the foul calls. Each Referee’s Box has a light in front of it. When a referee makes a foul call, he/she pushes a button which lights up their light and makes a high-pitch whistle sound.
  • Play must stop immediately after a whistle is blown. If a player is in a scoring motion when the whistle is blown, the goal will count as long as the ball’s path is not altered by another offensive player.
  • Substitution are only allowed after a goal, before a penalty shot, or during a timeout. Coaches will send their substitute to the bench official's box. The bench official will notify the other officials to allow the sub to enter the game next time there is a stoppage in play.
  • Each coach is allowed 2 timeouts per game.

Fouls, Violations, and Suspensions

  • Foul calls are very basic. Any excessive contact with an opposing player will result in a foul. The player that was fouled will be awarded a penalty shot.
  • Players may set screens like in basketball, but may not hold/restrain an opposing player.
  • Hitting an opposing player with the paddle is only allowed if attempting to make a play on the ball. Incidental paddle contact is allowed.
  • If a player is judged to have intentionally struck an opposing player, this will result in a foul call and a penalty shot and a 5-minute suspension (like a hockey penalty).
  • If a player intentionally strikes an opposing player in an excessively violent manner, this will result in a penalty shot and suspension from the rest of the game.
  • Paddles may be thrown ONLY to prevent a goal. If a thrown paddle hits an opposing player, this will result in a penalty shot. If a paddle is intentionally thrown at an opposing player, this will result in a penalty shot and suspension from the game.
  • There are no goalkeepers in bounceball. If a defensive player spends 3 or more seconds in the goal zone, they will be suspended for 5-minutes.
  • If a defensive player commits a 3-second violation while a shot is attempted, this will result in both a penalty shot and 5-minute suspension.

Penalty Shots

  • Penalty shots work similar to a hockey shootout. It begins with one goalkeeper and one offensive player.
  • This is the only time a defensive player is allowed to act as a goalkeeper and spend more than 3 seconds in the goal zone. They may stay there until a shot is taken.
  • The offensive player must throw the ball once in the air and play it off the bounce, much like a tennis serve. They may also choose the strike the ball before it bounces.
  • Offensive players make take a running start, but must strike the ball before they reach the defensive zone line.
  • If the offensive player comes close enough, the goalkeeper may make a play on the ball before it is struck as long as they do not leave the goal zone.
  • The remaining 10 players on the court must wait behind the half-court line until the ball is struck. If a shot is taken and misses, the ball is live and the game returns to normal.

For those of you that read through all that, this will help you get a better idea of the court:

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And that about covers it. Now about the league. Originally I had wanted the sport to be called paddleball, but it turns out there already exists a sport with that name (you wouldn't believe how many unknown sports there are). So I decided upon bounceball. After all, that's what the sport is all about, the bounce of the ball. There will be 8 teams in the league to start out with. Obviously this whole project isn't going to be 100% realistic, but it makes sense for a new sport to start out small. Also, I will be creating entirely original identities for every team, and I wouldn't be able to complete 30-32 teams in time. I've come up with 20 potential markets for NBF teams. I plan on using cities that don't have more than 2 other teams in the Big 4 sports leagues.

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NBF TEAMS

Omaha Pioneers

Las Vegas Flyers

Virginia Captains

Austin Jackalopes

Milwaukee Hops

Portland Axemen

Buffalo Blizzards

Memphis Kings

The rest is up for debate. I don't want this thread to start out as a name-the-team contest, but I am open to suggestions. If I come up with any more ideas I'll post them above. Right now I'm just looking for comments/criticism on the sport in general. I'm almost done with Omaha, so I will probably post it in a couple days.

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I like that the teams are spread out, geographically.

I'm interested to see where this goes. Good luck!

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This looks really cool. Can't wait till the first few teams are released.

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Where exactly are the penalty shots taken from? I mean, you see these tennis players hitting the ball incredible speed,(see Raonic, Isner, Gulbis), and here, essentially serving, in all likelihood even closer than a baseline-to-baseline serve in tennis, would be pretty dangerous to this poor player in goal. Are they heavily-padded or something, or just really encouraged to try to get their paddle on it?

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The only indifference I have with the rules is only playing to 15, without a clock. I'd rather see it with 12 minute quarters like basketball. I'm a fan of how you spread out the teams and skipped out on some major cities (Boston, New York, Miamia, L.A.) for smaller cities. Excited for this!

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Yeah I'm not so sure about playing to 15 either, especially with the 3-point goal. It could be done in a couple of minutes, which probably wouldn't fly in the real world all that well.

I too also like the team placements

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Don't you dare screw up Columbus! In all seriousness, this series should be good. +1 follower.

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Where exactly are the penalty shots taken from? I mean, you see these tennis players hitting the ball incredible speed,(see Raonic, Isner, Gulbis), and here, essentially serving, in all likelihood even closer than a baseline-to-baseline serve in tennis, would be pretty dangerous to this poor player in goal. Are they heavily-padded or something, or just really encouraged to try to get their paddle on it?

Good point! The penalty shots are taken from wherever the offensive player chooses to. Keep in mind that if the offensive player gets too close to the goal when "serving," the goalkeeper can come make a play on the ball at any time. My thinking is that this would keep both players honest. Offensive players won't want to get too close, and defenders won't want to come out too far. Another thing to remember is that the balls and paddles will be much different than tennis. Obviously I've never played this sport and no equipment exists for it yet, but ideally the ball would be like a slightly heavier version of a skyball, (without as much bounce!). I don't know if anyone of you have ever played eclipse ball, but that's basically what the ball would be like. You have to hit it fairly hard to get some real speed on it.

The only indifference I have with the rules is only playing to 15, without a clock. I'd rather see it with 12 minute quarters like basketball. I'm a fan of how you spread out the teams and skipped out on some major cities (Boston, New York, Miamia, L.A.) for smaller cities. Excited for this!

Yeah I'm not so sure about playing to 15 either, especially with the 3-point goal. It could be done in a couple of minutes, which probably wouldn't fly in the real world all that well.

I too also like the team placements

Yeah, that's something I'm still considering changing. My problem with a clock in this sport is that it may induce stalling by the leading team. I want this to be a sport that is always moving and competitive to the last shot. I'd have to see a real-life pro bounceball game to truly know how easy it is to score. An alternative I've considered is to make each game a set, much like volleyball. Teams could play best-of-3 or best-of-5 sets.

Also, I just added some more info about subbing and timeouts under the Officiating tab.

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Where exactly are the penalty shots taken from? I mean, you see these tennis players hitting the ball incredible speed,(see Raonic, Isner, Gulbis), and here, essentially serving, in all likelihood even closer than a baseline-to-baseline serve in tennis, would be pretty dangerous to this poor player in goal. Are they heavily-padded or something, or just really encouraged to try to get their paddle on it?

Good point! The penalty shots are taken from wherever the offensive player chooses to. Keep in mind that if the offensive player gets too close to the goal when "serving," the goalkeeper can come make a play on the ball at any time. My thinking is that this would keep both players honest. Offensive players won't want to get too close, and defenders won't want to come out too far. Another thing to remember is that the balls and paddles will be much different than tennis. Obviously I've never played this sport and no equipment exists for it yet, but ideally the ball would be like a slightly heavier version of a skyball, (without as much bounce!). I don't know if anyone of you have ever played eclipse ball, but that's basically what the ball would be like. You have to hit it fairly hard to get some real speed on it.

The only indifference I have with the rules is only playing to 15, without a clock. I'd rather see it with 12 minute quarters like basketball. I'm a fan of how you spread out the teams and skipped out on some major cities (Boston, New York, Miamia, L.A.) for smaller cities. Excited for this!

Yeah I'm not so sure about playing to 15 either, especially with the 3-point goal. It could be done in a couple of minutes, which probably wouldn't fly in the real world all that well.

I too also like the team placements

Yeah, that's something I'm still considering changing. My problem with a clock in this sport is that it may induce stalling by the leading team. I want this to be a sport that is always moving and competitive to the last shot. I'd have to see a real-life pro bounceball game to truly know how easy it is to score. An alternative I've considered is to make each game a set, much like volleyball. Teams could play best-of-3 or best-of-5 sets.

Also, I just added some more info about subbing and timeouts under the Officiating tab.

I also thought that scoring 15 could go a bit too quick, so I really like the set idea. Even if it isn't all that easy to score, a 5-set match couldn't be all that tough to complete I would imagine.

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For subs I'd kind of like it to be like hockey with it happening whenever but you must be quick.

Yeah, that would be interesting. I'm trying to think of a way for subs to enter the court without having to open a door of some sort. The benches will be basically like hockey benches with netting in front. I really wanted it to just be glass in front of the benches, but I feel like that would separate the coach/team from the game too much. One idea I have is to have two doors: one in, one out. Both doors open to the outside of the court. That way there would be no door opening on to the court to interfere with the ball. The doors would be heavy enough that it wouldn't affect the ball's path if it hit one of them. Like hockey, they'd have to communicate to make sure both guys are going in/out at the same time.

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What type of jerseys would they be? Like hockey, soccer, or basketball.

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What type of jerseys would they be? Like hockey, soccer, or basketball.

Ah yes, I forgot to mention that. The uniforms will be a mix of the three. Shirts, shorts and socks like soccer, with large chest logos like hockey, and basketball-inspired shorts. I've always liked the soccer concept of home and clash uniforms, so that's the format I'll be using. Each team will also have custom paddle designs.

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OMAHA PIONEERS

I've always thought that Pioneers would be a fitting team for any Nebraska sports franchise, as a reference to the state's early years as a frontier state. Omaha is also known as a primary starting point for pioneers setting out on the Oregon Trail. I think the obvious symbol for pioneers is the covered wagon. And there aren't many covered wagon logos out there, especially in pro sports. I knew right away that I wanted to do an abstract covered wagon as an "O" for the primary logo. It's the perfect opportunity for a logo that's instantly recognizable as a symbol for the city of Omaha. It also ties in well with the wordmark. I stuck with the covered wagon theme for the alternate logo. I'm not sure how fast covered wagons can go, but hey, this one's moving pretty fast. I originally used black and orange and gold for the color scheme, but I think that's a little overdone with Omaha teams like the Lancers (minor league hockey) and Beef (arena football). I kept the gold and orange but changed black to a maroon color. Maroon and orange is an excellent color scheme that is basically non-existent in sports except for Virginia Tech.

Bounceball uniforms are, like I mentioned above, a mix of soccer, hockey, and basketball. The NBF has a contract with Nike to design their uniforms for all the inaugural teams. The home uniforms will usually feature the primary logo on the chest much like a hockey sweater. The clash uniforms might have a little more unconventional design on the front. Each uniform comes with a custom paddle. Here I used the same covered wagon design from the primary logo on the home paddle. The Pioneers' home uniform has a simple shoulder stripe that is meant to again represent the covered wagon. Their clash uni features the alternate logo, with an angled stripe design to match the angle of all the Pioneer's logos.

Side note: the names/numbers for each team will just be, y'know, made-up, like the rest of the sport.

With each new team reveal I will also post a mock-up of what the wall designs would look like IRL, along with some apparel.

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14451296986_6c8a250149_o.png

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OMAHA PIONEERS

I've always thought that Pioneers would be a fitting team for any Nebraska sports franchise, as a reference to the state's early years as a frontier state. Omaha is also known as a primary starting point for pioneers setting out on the Oregon Trail. I think the obvious symbol for pioneers is the covered wagon. And there aren't many covered wagon logos out there, especially in pro sports. I knew right away that I wanted to do an abstract covered wagon as an "O" for the primary logo. It's the perfect opportunity for a logo that's instantly recognizable as a symbol for the city of Omaha. It also ties in well with the wordmark. I stuck with the covered wagon theme for the alternate logo. I'm not sure how fast covered wagons can go, but hey, this one's moving pretty fast. I originally used black and orange and gold for the color scheme, but I think that's a little overdone with Omaha teams like the Lancers (minor league hockey) and Beef (arena football). I kept the gold and orange but changed black to a maroon color. Maroon and orange is an excellent color scheme that is basically non-existent in sports except for Virginia Tech.

Bounceball uniforms are, like I mentioned above, a mix of soccer, hockey, and basketball. The NBF has a contract with Nike to design their uniforms for all the inaugural teams. The home uniforms will usually feature the primary logo on the chest much like a hockey sweater. The clash uniforms might have a little more unconventional design on the front. Each uniform comes with a custom paddle. Here I used the same covered wagon design from the primary logo on the home paddle. The Pioneers' home uniform has a simple shoulder stripe that is meant to again represent the covered wagon. Their clash uni features the alternate logo, with an angled stripe design to match the angle of all the Pioneer's logos.

Side note: the names/numbers for each team will just be, y'know, made-up, like the rest of the sport.

With each new team reveal I will also post a mock-up of what the wall designs would look like IRL, along with some apparel.

14474389615_79330c3fc0_o.png

14494519293_55af066f7c_o.png

14473204634_d497fce56b_o.png

14451296986_6c8a250149_o.png

this is amazing. I cant wait to see the rest of the teams.

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Fantastic work on Omaha. The only complaint I have is the primary, at first glance, looks a lot like a light bulb.

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