When a player breaks the rules of basketball as defined in the rulebook for a league, the referee will blow his whistle and call a foul or violation. Fouls are called on any player or coach that performs an illegal physical or verbal action against another person on the court. Fouls give the other team possession of the ball and free throws if a team is in a penalty situation.
A technical foul is called on players and coaches for unsportsmanlike conduct or for technical mistakes like calling a timeout when your team doesn't have any left. Technical fouls can be called on players or coaches on the floor or on the sidelines.
Here are some situations where a technical foul will be assessed:
- a player or coach taunts another player or uses profanity
- a player or coach disrespects an official in any way
- a player physically attacks another player with his/her elbow
PRO TIP: It is considered a technical foul if a player calls a timeout and the limit of timeouts have been reached. It is also considered a technical foul if there are too many players on the court. The limit is five players per team.
NBA Technical Foul Types
- calling too many timeouts
- delay of game
- having too many players on the floor
- hanging on the backboard, rim, or support equipment
- player or coach conduct
College Basketball Technical Fouls
Class A Technical Foul
Class B Technical Foul
In college basketball, a class B technical foul is called if no physical contact is made between players. Class B technical fouls result in one free throw for the other team and do not count towards the team foul count.
Administrative Technical Foul
In college basketball, an administrative technical foul is something like failing to submit a team roster prior to the start of a game. Administrative technical fouls can result in one free throw, but don't count towards the team foul count.