Great Northern QF8 Tech Foul

At 0:15 in the video (6 seconds left in auto), 5658 receives a tech foul (far left side of the field). Does anyone know why?

That’s a tough one. There’s only so many techs in this game, many of which don’t apply to the match shown at the time noted.

Using a process of elimination…

Overheight robot or Arena damage, more likely the latter but inflicted on the Power Cells.

Backup option: The ref goofed on either the foul type or the alliance, resulting in H10 to Blue or possibly an overreach or too many Cells to Red. (Can happen.)

The alliance captain went to the question box. It was unclear why the penalty was assessed. One reason was they 5658 went outside frame - the other reason was 4607 held too many PC; even though we fired out our PCs before 5658 fed us.

Blue seemed to be flagged for a penalty during teleop - but was never recorded.

This all led to a lot of confusion prior to this questionable tie breaker.

A very long string of unfortunate events. Now we all move on.

Both of which are regular fouls. Not sure why a Tech would be called for those.

Those two pool noodles on top of the robot were a late addition, just for playoffs. I wasn’t the one to reinspect them, but it’s possible they were pushing the height limit, and no one (team or inspector) considered the impact when it moved like it did (I believe that’s a once-per-match movement to release something). When the robot rotates the top, you can tell they move upwards by some amount, resulting in a G17.

They made the same motion in QF4 and no penalty was assessed. So that certainly doesn’t make sense to me. Additionally the arc of the pool noodles prevented the height limit from being breached as the arm pivoted up. This was checked in the pits. The teams considered this.

Tangentially related… does anybody know the rule on climbers touching other robots who are sitting on the ground? In this match the blue robot is touching their alliance partner who is sitting on the ground and they were still given the climb. This changed the outcome of the match.

The alliance captain went to the question box and was told that the robot wasn’t “supported” by their alliance partner, despite the fact that they were touching. This is a different interpretation than “supported” in 2019… and if this is how things will be called moving forward I’ll be less hesitant to have teams park for 5 points next to climbing robots. Anybody know? @EricH?


From what I have seen in other competitions they seem to also be using the “normal” definition of supported and if a robot is just leaning up against another it was still called a climb.

4.4.4 and Q120. ‘Support’ means bearing weight, not just touching. This is different than some previous years.

Awesome! This is great to know moving forward.

At this point, I’m fairly concerned. This is no longer relevant to the original thread title, but I can no longer rename it. At Northern CT in New England, the #8 Alliance captained by 2590 was the only one not disabled in their match because their partners were “late” (in the stream at 7h35m35s). The Emcee specifically called out that “this one is gonna be 3 versus 1. Two of the robots on the red alliance were late to the field. FIRST is very serious about enforcing that this year.” Despite this though, all 3 red robots were on carpet and we as an audience weren’t informed of this until the match was already in play.

Please, tell me again how this betters the team experience?


Oh okay they got a replay for “misinterpretation of the rules for bypassing teams”. Interesting all the same, but wow what whiplash.

This happens after the call but it might be related…

You can see the technician run across the far side of the field at about 2:03 and go into the driver station. In the bottom right side cut view you can see the technician than access the driver station. The head referee sees this and talks to the FTA. At that point the FTA goes over to the driver station and talks to the drive team (presumably telling them they are disabled for H4).

I think those are all correct (although an H5 foul probably should also be assessed).

We were told this is why they were disabled. The penalty wasn’t related to this incident.

While I agree with the spirit of the support means bearing weight interpretation, I feel like it’s going to lead to inconsistent rulings.

Take two of our team’s matches from this past weekend as examples. In the first we’re clearly hanging and supporting the entirety of our weight then a teammate drives underneath us touching our bumpers with their own (sorry the video doesn’t give a better view of this). In the second we end up partially on top of another bot and are supported by them. In both cases we weren’t given credit for the climb.

I don’t disagree with either of the calls on the field, but I definitely wouldn’t want to be the person in the position to make the call if a climbing bot is truly supported versus simply touching another.

To me the take away for teams should be; if you’re touching a climbing bot get out of the zone and completely avoid getting in a situation where you’re trying to argue with the head ref about what the definition of support is.