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Frequently Asked Questions about EliteSYFL

How things work in the EliteSYFL

Elite Spring Youth Football League was developed to give players and coaches a unique opportunity to practice and compete during the off-season. Spring football allows teams to continue to develop together by enhancing their skills and abilities through extra player development, whether it means helping established players prepare to take the next step, or getting younger players ready for more important roles. Our league is open to any organization in the state looking to strengthen their football program, no matter what league you compete in during the Fall. 

  • How does the season work?
    • EliteSYFL offers a state tournament for Spring 8 on 8 tackle football that runs from February to May each year. ESYFL provides a schedule of 6 games over a 6-week regular season with one bye week, one double header week as well as a 2-4 week post-season playoff format. 
  • How can a team participate?
    • Elite Spring Youth Football League accepts team participation from any type of team, in all areas of the state, from all types of leagues and associations no matter what affiliation they have in the Fall. Leaders from youth football organizations can contact us to get more information or to register for the upcoming season. 
  • What does ESYFL provide for the teams and coaches?
    • EliteSYFL manages the tournament from team registrations through the state championships and end-of-year banquets. This includes the operations and management of tournament games, player liability and 2nd tier accident insurance, game jerseys or uniforms if teams request them to be added to registration prices, state champion recognition awards, game fields and locations, referees, game schedules, competition brackets and standings based on game stats, certification processes, statewide playoffs, and championship games.  Organizations are required to register their players using any system they choose while requiring ESYFL certification information to submit for rosters and payments to the league by stipulated dates. Each team's players will be certified at or before their first games. 
  •  How long is the season?
    • All games are played on Saturdays from the end of February through the end of April. There are six regular weeks, with one bye week and one doubleheader week. There are two weeks of playoffs, a bye week, and then a week of championships. 
  •  What is the regular season game format?
    • Tentative to change based on team registration for the 2024 season. Team travel will be necessary within the tournament and ESYFL will aim to make travel weeks scheduled as doubleheaders to assist with costs to families.  
  • How are standings and playoffs determined?
    • In the 2024 tournament there are three tournament division designations. All teams play the regular season games without a division designation.  During the regular season ESYFL ranks the teams of an age division based on wins/ losses, points scored, and points against. Prior to the post season playoffs, ESYFL will determine the number of teams for each age division that qualify as D1, D2, and D3 based on these stats and number of teams in that age division.

      D1 teams will participate in a hybrid double elimination option for teams that loose in the first round. Both D1 and D2 teams are competing for a State title. ESYFL will offer D3 teams the option to play in small “round robin” D3 bowl games in their regions.

  • Where are games played?
    • EliteSYFL plays around the state with several games played by multiple teams at each field. All fields are managed by the ESYFL staff and certification personnel are employed and monitored by ESYFL. Fields will be determined by the amount of teams that sign up in given areas. 
  • What are the league ages for the divisions?
    • Division allocation is determined by the "league age" of a child. A child's "league age" is determined by the child's age on July 31st, of the year previous to the year that the tournament is being played in. (For example, for the 2024 tournament season, the age is determined by July 31st, 2023 which is likely the same age as they played in their fall season.)
      • 6U- 5 & 6 years old
      • 8U- 6, 7, & 8 years old
      • 10U- 8, 9, & 10 years old
      • 11U- 9, 10, & 11 years old
      • 12U- 10, 11, and 12 years old
      • 13U- 11, 12, and 13 years old
      • 14U- 12, 13, and 14 years old
      • 15U- 13, 14, and 15 years old
  • What are the game ball regulations?
    • The game ball must be comparative to a Wilson Traditional Youth Football. The officials will rotate balls from each team while they are on offense. All balls must be approved by the game official prior to the start of the game. Composite footballs are allowed.
    • K2 for 6U and 8U
    • TDJ for 10U and 11U
    • TDY for 12U and 13U
    • TDS for 14U and15U
  • What is the team schedule deposit?
    • EliteSYFL requires a deposit to be made by January 15, 2024, to ensure a team's spot on the schedule. This deposit is NOT an EXTRA amount, it is a PORTION of your players' fees. If you are entering 1-2 teams (age divisions) the deposit is $600 per team, 3 or more teams (age divisions) the deposit is $400 per team. The ESYFL does offer discounts on team deposits for earlier commitment times.
  • What will be needed to register our players?
    • EliteSYFL does not require hard copies of any registration paperwork.  Players will be required to have their original birth certificate and their ID or their parent's ID present to be certified. Player information will be entered into the SportEngine system by either parents or the team contact person PRIOR to certification. A headshot photo of the player with no hats or sunglasses and a photo of the player's original birth certificate should be uploaded into the system to be verified by ESYFL staff. There will also be a medical waiver and liability release form that parents will have to sign and have on file. 
  • When is the FIRST practice?
    • There are no practice limitations for the tournament. ESYFL insurance only will cover teams from December 1st. Practices prior to this date are not covered under the liability/ accident insurance for this League. 
  • What are the equipment requirements?
    • ESYFL does not provide equipment for teams. Teams can use their own game jerseys or choose to have custom, sublimated uniforms added to their registration package. Players must have a number on their jerseys to participate. Players must remain in their same jersey number throughout the season. All players must have certified helmets and pads to participate. 
  • Is ESYFL a recreational or competitive program?
    • ESYFL will have D1 and D2 brackets with D3 competition as well. 
  • How many players are there on each team?
    • There is no minimum or maximum number of players that a coach can have on a team. However, a team must start the game with a minimum of 8 players but may continue after the start of the game with fewer players.  The game shall be forfeited in the event a team does not field the minimum numbers of players at the start of the game. 
  • What rules does ESYFL follow?
    • The rules for 8 on 8 tackle are essentially the same as 11 on 11, in terms of the basic game and penalties. There are some differences, however: 
      • The game is played with 8 players on each side of the field. 
      • There are two 22-minute halves with a continuous clock. 
      • Only 3 referees in the game during the regular season and 1st two rounds of playoffs. 
      • There are no field goals, punting, or kickoffs. 
      • The field size is 80 yards by 40 yards. 
      • Each team is allowed two, thirty-second timeouts per game. Any unused timeouts can carry over to the second half. 
      • There is a mandatory two-minute warning at the end of each half, with all privileges of a time-out for both teams. 
      • There are slight differences in the offensive and defensive minimum and maximum lineman rules.