BCBC pool 8 Ball

BCBC 8 BALL Pool League

Eight Ball Rules  (revised 2/5/2012)

                                            ( Changes are highlighted )



Players will lag for break. At the same time, players shoot a ball from behind the head string,

banking it off the foot rail and back to the head of the table. Striking the side rails or pockets

loses the lag. The ball closest to the head rail wins the lag. You may strike the head rail. If during

the lag the balls touch each other you must lag over.

All games must be played with a red dot cue ball.


The break must be open break. A minimum of three (3) object balls must be driven to a rail to

constitute an open break. Pocketing a ball is the same as hitting a rail. If an open break is not

made, the balls shall be re-racked, and the opposing player shall break.

On the break, when the cue ball is scratched or jumped off the playing surface, a ball-in-hand

penalty is enforced.

If an object ball leaves the table on break, spot the ball – no foul (except for the 8-ball, which

constitutes automatic loss of game).


The choice of stripes or solids is not determined on the break even if balls are made from only

one or both groups. The table is always open immediately after the break shot. The choice of

group is only determined when a player legally pockets a ball after the break shot.

The table is “open” when the choice of groups (stripes or solids) has not yet been determined.

When the table is open, it is legal to hit a solid first to make a stripe or vice versa. You may also

hit the eight ball first to pocket a stripe or solid. Intention should be made as to where a

designated ball will be pocketed.

If, on the shot, the player meets the conditions above, but is called for a foul in the process of

that particular shot, the table shall remain open. The opponent receives ball-in-hand.


On all shots the player shall cause the cue ball to strike one of his group of balls first and drive

any ball to a cushion or into a pocket.

The player remains at the table by calling a designated ball of his/her group and its intended

pocket, and then legally pocketing the called ball into the called pocket. In the case of a

combination shots, only the pocketed ball and its intended pocket need to be called. The 8-ball

can be used as the first ball in a combination shot when the table is still open.

If an object ball is not intended to be made in a designated pocket, the player may choose to call

a no-call (a.k.a. “safe”) on the shot and no foul will result as long as the designated ball is struck

first and any other ball or the cue ball hits a rail.

Jumping the cue ball and massé shots in which the stick is above the shoulder are not permitted

and constitute a foul with ball-in-hand penalty.


If a shooter so desires, he/she may pick up the cue ball and hand it to his opponent, in lieu of

taking the shot.

Fouls may be called by any player of both teams. Only the shooters must acknowledge if a foul

has occurred; however, ignorance of the rules is not an excuse not to acknowledge a foul. If the

shooter is not sure if a foul has occurred, the team captain must make the decision for the

shooter before the game resumes. Disputes will be settled by the team captains. If the captains

are unable to settle the dispute, the game will continue as if no foul occurred. A protest may be

filed with the league officers for a final decision.

Captains shall be permitted to watch and shall call close hits if asked to do so prior to a shot.

Before exercising your option of cue ball in hand, the foul must be called prior to removal of cue

ball from the playing surface, and must then be acknowledged by the opponent.

A player shall call a foul for any of the following reasons and a ball-in-hand penalty shall be

assessed -

1. Scratching the cue ball, or jumping the cue ball off the table is an automatic foul and

does not need to be called.

2. Failure to strike an object ball of one’s own group first.

3. Failure to drive any ball on the table to a cushion or into a pocket.

4. “Digging” under the cue ball with intent to make it jump.

5. Touching the cue ball.

6. A person or player not involved in that game, interfering, or coaching other than

outlined in the “Coaching” section below. Good sportsmanship advises that a warning

will be provided first.

7. If an object ball comes to rest off the playing surface, his/her opponent should spot it at the foot spot.

8. Marking the table in any way as an aiming aid.

    Example A:  Using a block of chalk anywhere on the table to help aim your shot.

    Example B:  Wetting your finger to mark the table.

    Example C:  Chalking your stick and marking the table with the tip to help aim your shot.

    Example D:  Having your coach hold his/her finger at the spot to shoot at while you're shooting the ball that is in motion.

    Example E:  No using your stick to mark the table by sawing the table back and forth behind the object ball  to aim your shot-possibly marking the table.


9. Taking too much time between shots. A 60-second shot clock is in effect. If a player is

taking more time than this, the opposing team captain shall first inform the other team

captain that the player is taking too long. If the player continues to take more than 60

seconds between shots, it will be considered a foul.


A player may name any member of that team to be that player’s coach. A player may be allowed

only one coach time-out call during any one game. Time-out may only be called by the player,

and/or the person designated as coach by the player. Time-outs will be limited to two minutes.

No huddles.

If the player is coached a second time during the game, a foul has been committed and a ball-inhand

penalty will be enforced.

Coach may not place the cue ball or mark the table in any other way for a player.

A player shall be permitted to ask his/her teammates which group of balls he/she is playing – no

time-out. However, if a teammate tells the player that he/she is about to shoot at the wrong

group without the player asking, it will be considered a time-out.


When a cue ball is in hand player may use his hand or the side of the cue stick, not the tip

surface, which includes the ferrule, to position or reposition the cue ball prior to his shot.


After pocketing all his/her group of balls, the player will then attempt to pocket the 8-ball. The

pocket in which the 8-ball is intended to fall shall be marked with a “patch.” The player that

legally pockets the 8-ball in the pocket that is patched results in a win for that player for that



If an object ball comes to rest off the playing surface, it is placed on the foot spot unless other

object balls interfere, in which case the ball being spotted is placed on the long string from the

foot spot as near as possible, which shall mean frozen to the interfering ball. However, when the

cue ball is interfering with the spotting of balls, the ball being spotted shall be placed as near as

possible to the foot spot without the ball being frozen to the cue ball.

In the event the cue ball or an object ball stops on the edge of a pocket then falls into the pocket

because of vibrations, fan interference, or stomping of the feet, it shall be replaced on the edge

of the pocket as near as possible to its position before interference. The home team captain shall

replace the ball; however, if it balances momentarily (5 seconds) on the edge of the pocket and

then falls in again without outside interference, it remains in the pocket.

If the object ball drops in the pocket while player is shooting, it is to be replaced and the shot is

executed again, provided the player was shooting at the fallen ball.


If a ball is frozen to a cushion, opponent must notify player and receive acknowledgement.

Players must be advised at each attempt to shoot a frozen ball. When playing such a shot, player


1. Pocket the frozen ball;

2. Cause the cue ball to contact the cushion after striking the frozen ball;

3. Drive the frozen ball into another cushion; or

4. Cause another object ball to contact a cushion or be pocketed.

Failure to do one of the above is a foul, and a ball-in-hand penalty is assessed.


Occasionally it occurs after the break, or anytime during the game, that a player mistakenly

starts shooting at the wrong object balls. Although it would be sportsmanlike to tell your

opponent he or she is about to foul, it is not a requirement. If a player shoots at the wrong

object ball and pockets it, you must call a foul.


A ball-in-hand penalty is assessed when a player has the 8 ball as his object ball and commits a

foul but does not:

1. Pocket the 8 ball;

2. Scratch the cue ball;

3. Jump the 8 ball off the playing surface; or

4. Jump the cue ball off the playing surface.


Automatic loss of game shall occur in any of the following conditions -

1. Making the 8 ball on the break, and the cue ball either scratches or jumps the table

coming to rest off the playing surface;

2. Jumping the 8 ball off the table at any time;

3. Making the 8 ball in a pocket other than the pocket designated by the “patch”;

4. Making the 8 ball when it is not the designated ball;

5. Scratching the cue ball when playing the 8 ball;

6. Pocketing the 8 ball by hand, bridge, body, jewelry, etc.;

7. Failure to allow the cue ball to come to a complete stop prior to anyone touching the cue

ball; or

8. Pocketing the 8 ball and touching the cue ball.


A stalemate occurs when neither player wants to shoot because he/she will open the table for

his/her opponent. This usually occurs late in a game when few balls remain on the table and are

touching or are very near to each other. In a stalemate situation, if both players agree, the

game may be replayed. The same player that broke in the stalemated game maintains the

breaking honors in the replay game

Start of page