Yellow / Red Cards Assigned in 2019



I agree. Any rule that can be eliminated should be. It’s amazing how difficult it is to watch a pro sports game even when you understand all the rules. Targetting, the ‘process’ of a catch, etc are all very subjective calls that are very similar to rules like the tipping rule or the hatch launch rule. Any one that can be eliminated takes a load off the refs, makes the games flow more smoothly, and generally improves the sport. I wouldn’t want to see the nets make a comeback because of the robot entanglement they might create, but there are other ways to prevent people from crossing. Think a solid rail a couple feet above the field perimeter. It would also alleviate many of the tipping issues we see.


Our team got two yellow cards for going over the player station height while on HAB1. First time was due to a mechanism failure and was totally justified. Second time was debatable. As part of out climb, we need to move our elevator up to allow our climbing mechanism to move out, and then we bring the elevator back down. Well they called us for being above the player station height (78 in) by 1 inches, for a fraction of a second. After that they were watching us and everyone else like a hawk. Thankfully we were able to modify it so that when it moved up to get out of the way, it went about 8 inches shorter.

359 (Hawaiian Kids) also got tagged with a yellow once for the same thing, but theirs seemed like a case of meaning to bring the elevator down to climb, but it was stuck so they brought it up and then down, but it went to high.


in 2017 after Finals match 2, I kinda ran/jumped onto the field after the score showed we won. the gates were open and lights purple. the ref told me I didn’t wait and he could card me, but It was a little late with us having already won.


Yeah 4063 got a foul for this at El Pass while playing defense on 118. Definitely something to be careful of, especially if you’re behind the cargo ship and can’t see the robot you’re defending against


Keep in mind Doug is likely responding to what’s posted here and not context. That’s what I’d be doing as well. If you read S3, walking across the wall isn’t a RED CARD by itself. The first offense warrants a warning. The second and subsequent offenses are YELLOW CARDs. If egregious, it can be escalated to a RED CARD. In the blue box, it mentions “jumping over” the barrier is an egregious violation.

The situation you describe doesn’t sound like it has anything to do with what Doug is discussing. You’re talking about walking onto the field when it isn’t green. I’ve often seen events instruct volunteers to open the field immediately upon completion (and stand to help keep teams from getting on the field) to allow for those ref huddles everyone loves so much to happen without refs stepping over the same wall they tell kids isn’t safe to step over with the idea being this helps speed up the part of the game that nobody enjoys.

Also, I’d point out you’re looking at S2 which says either a ref or the FTA can tell you to come on when the field isn’t green. It’s not just the ref. But, it is only those two roles.


Austin had a couple of yellow cards for extending beyond the alliance wall during a climb (one escalated to a red). There were a handful of yellows for contact inside the frame perimeter.

I don’t think there were any other cards assigned.


We actually got the foul when we crossed midfield and the cable protector lifted our front bumper onto 118’s bumper.


Oh really? I was right by the field for that match and didn’t actually see the violation. I kind of assumed it was your intake. That was a really fun match to watch though, you gave us some hell. It’s unfortunate we ended up against each other in finals. Cheers and congrats on Chairman’s


Yes, we (1519) were assigned a yellow card in Finals 1 of GSD. I know when in the match the incident took place (with about 40 seconds left in teleop), but what still puzzles me is watching the video (currently only on the Twitch stream; I’m hoping that we’ll be able to look at it from either team video or once NEFIRST uploads the videos to YouTube) is that at the time of the interaction, there is no indication from the nearby referees or the head referee that there is any penalty being incurred. The contact really seemed like normal gameplay to me, and the interaction happened while we were being defended.

For me, it mostly hurts that G20 (the relevant rule) is for “Initiating deliberate or damaging contact with an opponent ROBOT…” We definitely weren’t trying to damage the opponent robot and surely weren’t trying to contact them with our comparatively fragile arm / wrist / intake mechanism! The rule for G20 makes it sound like the yellow card is for being the instigator of damaging contact – we definitely weren’t trying to break anybody’s robot! (and as far as I know, no damage occurred to either our robot or theirs.)

I should mention that I have very high respect for the opposing robot, 1277, and indeed the entire blue alliance, as we had been concerned that in Finals 2, the blue alliance may try to draw the same foul, which would have elevated to a red card and resulted in a win for blue. However, the blue alliance instead focused their defensive efforts on 5687 during Finals 2, so a similar situation never developed.

I have nothing but good things to say about the 2nd-seeded alliance of 4761, 88, 1277 - they were worthy opponents and only missed scoring a “tie” in Finals 2 by a few seconds (4761 needed just a few more seconds to complete their L3 climb in Finals 2.)


I know I’m biased here as it was my team, and the yellow hurt our rankings badly, but should that really be a yellow card? Yellow cards are supposed to be for “egregious violations” that pose safety concerns or impact game play in a negative, unfair, or un-GP way (my words there, but that’s my understanding). The intention on the rule is not to let robots fall dangerously over the alliance wall, but a <1 second overextension by ~1 inch while on the hab 1 platform is none of those things. Is there a way to get in contact with the rules people at FIRST to get one of those “except for momentary violations” statements added to that rule?


Best way to start would be to post a Q&A or email FRC Team Advocate (from)


The rule also functions as a design constraint - if you do it once it’s one story, but if your elevator needs to raise to deploy the climber, that’s a momentary violation in every match, which is likely to be very suspicious to any referee who sees it more than once. It’s almost certainly worth a yellow if you designed the climber around violating a safety rule to make it work. If it didn’t need to go all the way, just close, you should be aware of the rule and either have a preset in software or some sort of mechanical constraint the driver can engage.


We made the adjustment as soon as we found it was an issue. It originally went higher than necessary as a safety precaution, funnily enough.


I haven’t seen the intention listed anywhere. Do you have a link for that? (I’m honestly curious about this myself).

With respect to the question you ask, do you REALLY want refs on site estimating the time and distance for a yellow card? That sounds like a nightmare for consistency. As many teams attend multiple events, wouldn’t you be incredibly frustrated to find it being called different at each event?

As far as the last question you ask, I’d be surprised if that changed. Keep in mind that rule existed the entire build season. Every team had that same constraint. Some teams are playing it close. Others made design decisions that impacted other aspects of their robot based on this constraint. If it were removed after the game started, would it be fair to those teams? Currently, you both had equal opportunity. If it changes now, it benefits you far more than it does them. I’m not sure that’s a fair thing to do.


Speaking of this, does anyone have any other experience with pre-match red cards? Let’s say it was the first match of semifinals and this happens, would the field be cleared (since one alliance was disqualified, causing the other to win by default) and the teams for semifinal 2 placed on the field?
In this case, it was semifinal match 4. Victory in semifinal match 4 was decided by the disqualification of the blue alliance. About three minutes after the card was presented, semifinal match 6 (tiebreaker for matches 2 and 4) was played. Should there have been a FIELD TIMEOUT between the two matches? It probably would have been nice to let the drive teams relax a bit after the surprising event. One could say that the match technically ended as soon as the ref saw the individual commit the offense, which probably happened a few minutes before the announcement was made, but is there any precedent for this?


From Table 5-2,

    • a warning issued by the Head REFEREE for egregious ROBOT or team member behavior or rule violations. A subsequent YELLOW CARD within the same tournament phase will lead to a RED CARD.
    • a penalty assessed for egregious ROBOT or team member behavior or rule violations which results in a team being DISQUALIFIED for the MATCH.


Consider me slightly confused… you’re telling me for egregious violations you get a yellow card, but for egregious violations you get a red card?

I understand that most rules clarify when the red makes its appearance, but many of them simply say “if egregious” then it quickly escalates or something similar. I never noticed this redundancy before now…


I totally understand that, and I recognize that we should have been more careful to comply to that rule. We’ve already made a software change to make the robot more obviously compliant. What I’m questioning is why it’s a yellow card violation. No action that the robot took seemed dangerous or egregious to me.


For instance, if you go above the player station in the HAB zone, but not on the HAB platform (meaning the loading stations), it’s only a normal foul. Really it seems down to the language of the term “climbing” and how going up a tiny ramp to a 3" platform is considered climbing. It’s kind of like saying that me going over a speed bump and Evel Kenevil jumping a canyon are both going off ramps.


For reference, this was the match where our team received a second yellow card:

Noticed it while watching? Yeah, we didn’t either.