BYLAWS OF THE NATIONAL WOMEN’S LACROSSE LEAGUE
Section 1. We, the members of the Coaches Committee of the National Women’s Lacrosse League, believe:
(A) In a strong league composed of NAIA institutions with similar philosophies.
(B) That the primary purpose of the League is to enhance the educational mission of its institutions through the sport of Lacrosse.
(C) That the proper resources and commitments to Lacrosse must be made by the member institutions to provide the kinds of educational experiences that we collectively value.
(D) That all member institutions should commit themselves to participating fully both in spirit and in resources to the idea and concept of a competitive NAIA Lacrosse league.
Section 2. We, the members of the Coaches Committee of the National Women’s Lacrosse League, strongly affirm the aforementioned goals and beliefs as an expression of our commonly held athletic philosophy and adopt the following as the Bylaws of the National Women’s Lacrosse League.
ARTICLE I. NAME
The name of this organization shall be the National Women’s Lacrosse League herein referred to as the League.
ARTICLE II. PURPOSE
The purpose of the League shall be to develop, perpetuate, and enhance the educational mission of its member institutions through a national association of institutions of higher education and a common dedication to excellence in the sport of Lacrosse. The specific objectives of the League shall include the following:
(A) To establish a common set of academic guidelines following the NAIA standards of eligibility.
(B) To legislate through bylaws and operating policies to ensure the honorable conduct of Lacrosse offered within the Conference.
(C) To enhance community, student and public interest in the sport of Lacrosse.
(D) To establish the League as an outstanding small college athletic league serving to support the sport of Lacrosse.
ARTICLE III. OFFICES
Section 1. Principal Office. The principal office of the League shall be in the location of the league commissioner for the purposes of administering the activities of the League.
Section 2. Governing Committee Chair. The NWLL Coaches Committee will appoint the Governing Commissioner. The Governing Commissioner serves as the chief administrative officer of the League.
Section 3. Coaches Committee.
(A) A Coaches Committee for the sport of lacrosse shall be sponsored by the League.
(B) Each conference will vote for a coaching chair that will represent that conference on the Coaches Committee.
ARTICLE IV. OFFICE OF THE COMMISSIONER
(A) The Commissioner shall have the powers necessary for the effective performance of his duties.
(B) The Commissioner's duties shall be:
(1) Serve as the chief administrative officer of the League.
(2) Have the responsibility of interpreting and enforcing all rules and regulations of the conference and its national association.
(3) Serve as an ex-officio, non-voting member of all committees.
(4) Reprint the Constitution and Bylaws of the League from time to time as may be necessary.
(5) Purchase awards and trophies awarded by the League.
(6) Conduct, through the press, radio, television, periodicals, various meetings, and the general service of his office, a continuing educational program to promote the development of better sportsmanship, respect for the amateur spirit, and understanding of the values of Lacrosse.
(7) Administer through the league office all sports information materials to include media guide publications, press releases, and statistical reports.
ARTICLE V. ENFORCEMENT PROCEDURE
Section 1. The Commissioner shall be the principal enforcement officer of the League Rules and Regulations.
ARTICLE VI. MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Charter Member Institutions. Charter members of the League are Indiana Tech, Missouri Baptist University, Reinhardt University, Robert Morris College (Ill.), Shorter University, and Tennessee Wesleyan College.
Section 2. Qualification. To be a member of the League, institutions must be fully accredited senior institutions of higher education and must be members in good standing of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA). Only members are eligible to qualify for and compete in the NWLL Tournament.
ARTICLE VII. ELIGIBILITY
Section 1. Requirements
(A) For a student to be eligible for any NAIA-recognized intercollegiate competition, a member institution must ensure that the student conforms to the following regulations:
(1) An entering freshman student must be a graduate of an accredited high school or be accepted as a regular student in good standing as defined by the enrolling institution.
(2) An entering freshman student must meet two of the three entry-level requirements:
(a) A minimum score of 18 on the Enhanced ACT or 860 on the SAT (for tests taken on or after April 1, 1995).
NOTE: An entering freshman must achieve a score of 18 or higher on the Enhanced ACT or a score of 860 or higher, achieved on the Critical Reading and Math sections of the SAT. The test score must be achieved at a single test sitting administered by a certified tester on a National, International or official state assessment testing date to apply to this requirement. A test taken under any conditions other than those listed is considered by both testing agencies to be a residual test and cannot be used for certification purposes. The ACT/SAT must be taken prior to the beginning of the term in which the student initially participates.
(b) An overall high school grade point average of 2.000 or higher on a 4.000 scale.
(c) Graduate in the upper half of the student's high school graduating class. The class rank must appear on the student’s transcript, leaving certificate or other academic document. If the student’s class rank does not appear on the above-mentioned documents, a letter from the student’s principal or headmaster, written on the school’s letterhead and with the school’s official seal, stating that the student meets the class rank requirement can be accepted.
(B) GED and home-schooled students:
The GED will be recognized as satisfying the grade point average equivalent. The GED student must achieve a score of 18 on the Enhanced ACT or 860 on the SAT to meet the freshman requirements. Home-schooled students must receive the certificate (or equivalent) granted by the appropriate state verifying successful completion of home schooling requirements and achieve the minimum ACT/SAT score to meet the freshman requirements.
(C) International students:
An incoming freshman international student shall first be reviewed under the same conditions required of a regular freshman student. The evaluation listed below shall be applied only if the high school GPA and class ranking cannot be determined. If a student has graduated from a high school outside of the United States or one of the U.S. territories and the high school transcript is such that the grade point average cannot be determined and the class ranking is not available, this student can be ruled eligible by meeting the specific institution’s admission criteria for international students and by meeting the following NAIA criteria:
(1) A score of 18 on the Enhanced ACT or 860 on the SAT
(2) Meet the entering freshman requirements as defined for students from each country in the most current Guide to International Academic Standards for Athletics Eligibility published by the NCAA (based on AACRAO guidelines).
(D) Students not meeting at least two of the three standards shall be denied athletics participation at a member institution for the first full year of attendance (2 semesters, 3 quarters, or equivalent) that such a student is identified with any institution(s).
(E) The student must be identified and enrolled in a minimum of 12 institutional credit hours at the time of participation.
EXCEPTION to the 12 credit-hour enrollment rule:
A student who will complete requirements for graduation within 10 semesters, 15 quarters, 12 trimesters or less may retain eligibility during the last term of attendance of the senior year by enrolling in fewer than 12 institutional credit hours. Official verification must be provided by the registrar that the student has completed all other academic requirements for graduation except for the currently enrolled credits. Such verification must be provided to the Eligibility Chair.
A student invoking the above Exception who completes all academic requirements for graduation and who subsequently enrolls in the graduate or professional school of the institution where he/she earned an undergraduate degree, who is enrolled and seeking a second baccalaureate or equivalent degree at the same institution, who is enrolled in a fifth year post-baccalaureate degree teacher education program at the same institution, or who is enrolled and pursuing a second major area of study at the same institution is eligible to participate provided the student has athletic eligibility remaining and meets the criteria of the Exception to Article V, Section D (5).
(1) The term in which the student invokes this Exception shall be counted as a term of attendance. However, this term will not count in the calculation of the 24-credit-hour rule.
(2) To calculate the 24 credit hours, the institution should consider the two terms immediately preceding the term the student completes the requirements for graduation.
(3) A student who invokes the above Exception and does not graduate forfeits any remaining eligibility in all sports sponsored by the NAIA.
(4) The student must maintain institutional identification during any term of participation.
(5) The student must have accumulated a minimum of nine (9) institutional credit hours prior to identification for the second term of attendance. Only those institutional credit hours earned after identification (at any institution) may be applied toward meeting the nine (9) institutional credit hour rule for a second-term freshman.
(6) After completion of the second semester term or third quarter term of attendance and from then on, a student must have accumulated a minimum of 24 institutional credit hours in the two immediately previous terms of attendance in a semester system or 36 institutional credit hours in the three immediately previous terms of attendance in a quarter system. A student transferring from a quarter system to a semester system must have accumulated 24 institutional credit hours in the previous two terms of attendance after the first term of attendance at the new institution. A student in a quarter system must have accumulated 24 institutional credit hours in the previous two-quarter terms of attendance if completion of three quarter terms of attendance has not occurred. Upon completion of three quarter terms of attendance the student must have accumulated 36 institutional credit hours. No more than 12 institutional credit hours earned during summers and/or during non-terms may be applied to meet the 24/36 institutional credit-hour requirement. Such credit must be earned after one or both of the two immediately previous terms of attendance.
All credit hours used to meet this total of 24/36 institutional credit hours are to be taken at face value and are not to be converted, even if earned at different institutions using different credit hour systems (e.g., quarter and semester).
EXCEPTION: A transfer student who has met the graduation requirements for an associate degree from a junior college and who has not been identified with any institution(s) of higher learning for more than five semesters or seven quarters will be exempt from meeting the 24/36-hour rule for the first term upon transferring to an NAIA institution provided:
(a) The transferring student passed all hours required for graduation in the term in which graduation occurs and;
(b) Less than 24/36 hours were required for graduation during the last two semesters/three quarters terms.
Students receiving this exception must pass at least 12 hours in their first term of attendance at the four-year school to retain eligibility for a second term. The last semester/ trimester/quarter at the junior college shall count as a term of attendance.
EXCEPTION: A student will be exempt from meeting the 24/36-hour rule only during the first term in which the student initially competes in any sport at the intercollegiate level, provided the student has not previously participated in any intercollegiate sport at any institution; met freshman eligibility requirements upon initial identification with any institution (applies only to students in the first four semesters/six quarters or equivalent, of attendance); and has an overall GPA of 2.000 on a 4.000 scale calculated on the basis of all transcripts from all institutions (applies to students in all terms following the fourth semester/sixth quarter, or equivalent of attendance).
(7) The student must be making normal progress toward a recognized baccalaureate degree and maintain the minimum grade point average as defined by the institution and the NAIA (where applicable).
(8) Upon reaching junior academic standing as defined by the institution, a student must have a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.000 on a 4.000 scale. The 2.000 cumulative grade point average (GPA) or higher must be certified each grading period in which the student wishes to compete after junior academic standing is reached.
(9) To participate a second season in a sport, all students must have accumulated at least 24 semester/36 quarter (or equivalent) institutional credit hours. Transfer students shall use institutional credit hours as certified by the previous institution(s) to meet this requirement only for their first term of attendance at a member institution. Thereafter only institutional credit recognized by the student's current institution and submitted to the registrar for posting on the transcript shall apply.
EXCEPTION: A freshman who initially becomes identified after the first term in the fall shall meet this requirement by having passed 12 semester or 20 quarter institutional credit hours. This exception shall apply to the second season of competition regulation only. To participate the third season in a sport, all students must have accumulated at least 48 semester/72 quarter (or equivalent) institutional credit hours. Transfer students shall use institutional credit hours as certified by the previous institution(s) to meet this requirement only for their first term of attendance at a member institution. Thereafter only institutional credit recognized by the student's current institution and submitted to the registrar for posting on the transcript shall apply.
To participate the fourth season in a sport, all students must have accumulated at least 72 semester/108 quarter (or equivalent) institutional credit hours, at least 48 semester/72 quarter hours of which must be in general education and/or in the student's major field of study.
Transfer students shall use institutional credit hours as certified by the previous institution(s) to meet this requirement only for their first term of attendance at a member institution. Thereafter only institutional credit recognized by the student's current institution and submitted to the registrar for posting on the transcript shall apply.
(10) The student must be eligible according to the institution's standards for intercollegiate competition.
(11) The student must be eligible according to affiliated conference standards when such standards are more stringent than NAIA rules and standards.
(12) Repeat courses previously passed with a grade of "D" or better in any term, during summer, or during a non-term cannot count toward satisfying the 24/36 credit hour rule. A maximum of one repeat course per term previously passed with a grade of "D" (or the equivalent) may be counted toward satisfying the 12-hour enrollment rule. Repeat courses previously passed with a grade of "C" or better cannot be applied to meet either the 12-hour enrollment rule or the 24/36 credit-hour rule.
(13) For the fall term only, if athletic contests are scheduled before the opening date of classes, an enrolled student may compete prior to the first day of class, provided the student meets all other eligibility requirements. For all other terms during the regular academic year, a student enrolled in the second (or subsequent) term may compete between terms (beginning on the day following the close of the concluding term), provided the student meets all eligibility requirements for the upcoming term.
(14) A student who is eligible the last day of a term may retain eligibility until midnight of the 21st calendar day following the close of a term to allow an institution time to recertify eligibility. This regulation does not apply to students who complete all requirements for graduation or complete 10 semesters of attendance (or equivalent). Further, students declared ineligible by the institution or conference shall lose eligibility immediately upon such declaration.
(15) A student enrolling in college after the date set by the institution for enrollment of regular full-time students will not be eligible to compete in intercollegiate athletics until two full calendar weeks of residency have been completed.
ARTICLE VIII. LEAGUE COMPETITION
Section 1. Regular Season Competition
(A) In addition to its sanctioned conference schedule, NWLL member institutions are required to compete in a minimum of two (2) non-conference games against other NWLL member institutions.
(B) League games shall be officiated by U.S. Lacrosse rated officials only.
(C) All games shall be 60 minutes in length, divided into two 30-minute halves.
(D) Ties must be broken in order to be considered for the championship. The U.S. Lacrosse tiebreaking procedure shall be followed for all games.
For those teams who need to play off a tie, the following method is suggested:
(1) When the score is tied at the end of regular playing time, both teams will have a five-minute rest and toss a coin for choice of ends.
(2) Six-minutes of stop-clock overtime will be played. The clock will be stopped after three minutes of play in order for teams to change ends with no delay for coaching. The game will be restarted by a center draw. The team who is ahead at the end of six minutes wins the game.
(3) If the teams are still tied after six minutes have elapsed, the teams will have a three-minute rest and change ends.
(4) The winner will then be decided on a sudden victory stop-clock overtime of no more than six-minutes in length with the teams changing ends after three minutes. The game will be restarted by a center draw. The team scoring the first goal wins the game.
(5) Play will continue with sudden victory stop-clock overtime periods of six minutes in length with three minutes in-between and change of ends until a winning goal is scored.
(6) It is recommended that for a one-day tournament, the first six-minute overtime be omitted and the teams go immediately into sudden victory.
(E) Each team is encouraged to have a representative at the table during the game and the home team will be the official book and official stats. This includes one scorekeeper and one timekeeper.
ARTICLE IX. LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP TOURNAMENT
Section 1. Date. The NWLL Tournament will consist of eight teams and will commence between Thursday and Sunday during the third week in April. The Tournament will take place at a neutral site to be determined on a year-by-year basis by the Coaches Committee.
Section 2. Site. The Tournament will take place at a neutral site to be determined on a year-by-year basis by the Coaches Committee.
Section 3. Selection of teams. (NWLL Tournament qualifying.)
(A) Regular season conference champions will be granted automatic bids to the NWLL Tournament. The remainder of the Tournament field will be determined by one (1) of the following processes:
(1) With four (4) conferences. Two teams from each conference will be represented at the NWLL Tournament, one via automatic bid and the other via at-large bid. Regular season conference champions earn the automatic bid. Each conference’s at-large bid is determined by the conference tournament. Should the regular season champion advance to the conference tournament championship game, the team that advances to the conference tournament championship game to play the regular season champion would receive the at-large bid. Should the regular season champion fail to make the conference tournament championship game, the winner of the conference tournament championship game would receive the at-large bid.
(2) With five (5) or more conferences. The eight-team Tournament field will consist of regular season conference champions and at-large schools selected by the final regular season NWLL Coaches Top 10 Poll. The highest ranked schools not receiving an automatic berth to the Tournament will receive the at-large bids until the field of eight in complete.
(B) Seeding shall be announced by the commissioner’s office on the Monday prior to the start of the Tournament. Seeding will be determined by a meeting of the NWLL Coaches Committee on the second Sunday of April.
(C) In the event a Tournament game is delayed (weather, etc.), the Coaches Committee will gather to discuss options for completing the game and continuing with the Tournament schedule.
Section 4. Determination of NWLL Tournament Champion. The winner of the final game is the NWLL Tournament Champion.
Section 5. Tournament Administrative Personnel and Their Duties. Tournament Director is a representative of the host institution.
Section 6. Officials.
(A) Who assigns. The Coaches Committee will select Tournament officials based on ratings accumulated throughout the regular season. They shall be U.S. Lacrosse rated.
(B) Payment. The NWLL will pay the officials fees.
Section 7. Additional Tournament Procedures.
(A) There will be no squad size limitations in the tournament.
(B) The NWLL shall provide facilities, services, equipment and supplies necessary to conduct the tournament.
(C) The NWLL shall provide two ball persons for all four games during the final two rounds of the championship tournament.
ARTICLE X. PROCEDURES FOR SELECTION OF AWARDS RECRIPIENTS
Section 1. League Champion. The winner of the Tournament shall be the League champion and receive the League trophy.
Section 2. All-NWLL Team. An All-NWLL first and second team, each consisting of 12 players, will be named. Plaques will be awarded to first team honorees.
The following procedure will be used for selection:
(A) Only student-athletes appearing on their respective conference’s first team are eligible for All-NWLL selection. Each conference is required to forward the names of its first team All-Conference selections to the League office 48 hours prior to the beginning of its conference tournament.
(B) Each nomination is to include team, position, and all appropriate stats.
(C) A first and second team will be selected by a vote of NWLL coaches. Voting will take place following the NWLL Tournament and must be completed by the Saturday immediately following the NWLL Tournament. Coaches vote on the nominees using a numerical system.
(D) Coaches may not vote for their own players in NWLL balloting.
(E) Each coach will vote for a first team of three attack, five midfielders, three defense and one goalie. The second team will consist of the same breakdown with the honorable mention team consisting of the remaining nominees selected in order following the initial vote.
Section 3. Player of the Year. Selected by a vote of the coaches. The candidates must be members of the first team.
Section 4. Coach of the Year. Selected by a vote of the coaches following the prescribed guidelines in this manual.
Section 5. Rookie of the Year. Selected by vote of the coaches. The nominated candidates must be athletes in their first collegiate year of play.
Section 6. Defensive Player of the Year. Selected by vote of the coaches. Candidates must be members of the first team.
Section 7. Offensive Player of the Year. Selected by vote of the coaches. Candidates must be members of the first team.
Section 8. All-Tournament Team. An All-Tournament team consisting of 12 players will be selected by Tournament staff following the Championship game. A Most Outstanding Player will be selected among the 12 selections.
ARTICLE XI. NWLL COACHES’ TOP 10 POLL
Section 1. Poll. The NWLL Coaches Committee will vote on a weekly national poll. The NWLL Coaches’ Top 10 Poll is released each Monday following the first scheduled date of competition up until the final regular season poll is released on the Monday prior to the start of the NWLL Tournament. A Preseason Top 10 Poll is released on the first Monday of February.
Section 2. Voting. NWLL Coaches’ Top 10 Poll voting is based on conference rankings submitted to the League office by 10 a.m. ET each Sunday. The League will release conference rankings by 4 p.m. ET on Sunday. Members of the Coaches Committee will then rate, using a numerical system, all NWLL member institutions. The institution receiving the most points will be ranked No. 1, the institution receiving the second most points will be ranked No. 2, and so on. Votes are due to the League office by 9 p.m. ET Sunday.
Section 3. Release. The League office will release the NWLL Coaches’ Top 10 Poll at 10 a.m. ET on Monday.
ARTICLE XII. GERNERAL INFORMATION
Section 1. Coaches Meeting. The annual NWLL coaches meeting will be held at the NWLL Tournament.