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In memory of James Dungy
January 6, 1987 - December 22, 2005
In memory of James Dungy
January 6, 1987 - December 22, 2005

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beer pong, beirut, rut, lob pong or scud

Beer pong, also known as beirut, rut, lob pong or scud is a unique collage of throwing balls into cups, intense competition, social relaxation, and witty psyche-outs.

No matter what you call it beer pong is a great game to play while tailgating.

The game is simple, yet it can be intense. 

Beer pong is a drinking game in which players throw a table tennis ball across a table with the intent of landing the ball in one of several cups of beer on the other end (the opponent).

The game typically consists of two two-player teams, one on each side of a table, and a number of cups set up on each side.
See diagram
There are no official rules,
so rules may vary widely, though usually there are six or ten plastic cups arranged in a triangle on each side. The number of players on a team can vary as well, from one to three or more.

Two two-man teams stand at opposite ends of a table (commonly ranging from 6 feet to 10 feet in length) and take turns attempting to lob a table tennis ball into a formation of cups arranged at their opponent's end of the table. The cups are often partially filled (1/4-1/3 a cup) with a liquid, often beer (hence the name), to keep the cups from falling over. If a player successfully lobs a ball into a cup, the cup is removed from the formation.

 . . . removed from the formation and then the defending team must consume all of the beer inside that cup.

The game is won by eliminating all the other team's cups before all of one's own cups are eliminated. The losing team must then consume all the beer remaining in the winning team's cups.
The order of play varies - both players on one team shoot followed by both players on the other team, and players on opposite teams can alternate back and forth

Although the preceding guidelines are common, the rules may be subject to a wide variety of modifications and additions that often vary based on the area of the country, the state, or even the house in which a particular game is played.
Again, There are no official rules, so rules may vary widely!

The above diagram illustrates a standard set up for a game of beer pong, with either 6 or 10 cups being used.

Rules are made to be broken.

Again, There are no official rules!

There are so many different versions of the game, and none of them are right/wrong or better/worse. In fact, switching things up every now and then can make beer pong more interesting.

Make up your own house rules!
The best part about beer pong is coming up with your own house beer pong rules!

We here at The Colts Influence have developed this section of "Rules" more as a guideline to certain common aspects of the game.
The purpose is two-fold:

 (1) to give newcomers to beer pong the bare aspects of the game


(2) to give every beer pong enthusiast possible variations of the game that you may never have thought of or played.

People Needed:

2 or 4 people (head to head or 2 on 2)


Beer pong is usually played with two teams of two persons each, though it can be played with 2 teams of 1 person each. Each team begins the game standing at either end of the table behind their rack of cups

What you need to play:

(12) 12-16 ounce plastic cups (6 per team)
The most common cups used are Solo or Dixie 16 ounce cups. These cups have ridge-lines which can be used precisely to measure the amount of beer to be poured.
Games typically use either six, ten, or fifteen cups
(2) Ping-pong balls (preferably more incase one gets broken or lost)
(2-4) 12 ounce beverages per game
A flat level playing surface around 7 ft long and 3 ft wide

Playing field

Typical table size is 8 × 2 feet, and it stands 27.5 inches above the ground.  Although the game is typically played on either a ping pong table or a folding banquet table, beer pong enthusiasts may create a personalized table for use by friends and visitors. In general, this will be a plywood board cut to proper size, sometimes painted with sports, school, or fraternity symbols and given a liquid-proof coating.


If game has already been established - Winning team shoots first.
If the night is just beginning or the winning team has resigned then a player from each team will shoot on the count of three. If the player from Team 1 makes thier cup and the player from Team 2 doesn't, the next player on Team 1 will shoot. If  both teams make or miss, the next shooters on each team will shoot in the same fashion.
This continues until the outcomes are different.


Each team shoots twice per turn. If both players make their shots, the balls are returned and receive an extra turn.


The ball can be thrown or bounced into the cup. Depending on the length of the table, your elbow may not be allowed to cross the end of the table while shooting. (Good rule for shorter tables). If leaning is permitted, you can lean over the table but may not touch. If the ball somehow lands in the middle of 3 or 4 cups all cups are considered sunk. (very rare, easier when bouncing)

Sinking Cups:

A cup is sunk as soon as the ball touches the contents of the cup. If a ball is spinning in the cup you may attempt to blow it out before it touches the cups contents.
(Warning: If the ball touches the contents and then you blow it out and it lands in another cup, both cups are considered sunk).
If a team shoots and hit the other team's cup the team who had the cup that was sunk drinks the contents. Team members alternate drinking cups. If a person shooting knocks over the other teams cup unintentionally the cup is considered sunk. If you knock over one of your own cups, it is considered sunk.

In some house rules, players must immediately drink any cup that has been hit. Failure to do so incurs a penalty, such as drinking more beer or losing the game

Possible Game Variations
There is no right way to play beer pong,

Again, There are no official rules!

 but here are a few more common ways of playing along with some of the more unique versions that you may not have heard of.


Formation: Six cups in pyramid (3-2-1), touching
Throwing Pattern:  2-balls, 2 throws per team. If a team hits two cups in a turn, that team gets two more throws until a cup is missed.
Reformation: Reform at 4, 3, 2, and 1.
Ending the Game:  Redemption is allowed. However, if a team hits the opponents' last cup(s) with both shots (either two cups with two balls or the last cup with both shots), there is NO redemption and the game is over.


Formation:  Ten cups in pyramid (4-3-2-1), spaced
Throwing Pattern:  1 ball, 1 throw per team per turn.
Reformation:  No reformation
Ending the GameSudden Death.

12-cup Speed Pong 

Formation:  12 cups in 2 6-cup pyramids, touching
Throwing Pattern:  2 balls, Game starts with each team simultaneously taking one shot (opposing players diagonally opposite of each other). If a player hits a cup in the pyriamid directly across from him, he continuously gets the ball back until he misses a shot. If a player hits a cup in the pyramid that is not directly across from him, then the opposing team drinks the cup but does not return the ball. When a shot is missed, the ball is up for grabs - whoever can get to it gets the throw. There is no correlation between the two balls being thrown - a team may have both balls or it may have one ball.
ReformationReform when there are only 6 cups left. At this point, if a player hits any cup in the pyramid of 6 cups, he automatically gets the ball back.
Ending the Game: Sudden Death.

Throwing Patterns: 
Describes the number of balls used, in what order you throw them, etc.

2 Balls: Each team member gets a shot. If both members hit, the team may get them back. Otherwise, Team 2 will throw.

1 Ball: Shots alternate one shot at a time per team between all players. For example, for a game between Team 1 (Players A and B) and Team 2 (Players C and D), the throwing pattern may be A-C-B-D-A-C...

Speed Pong: This variation is used with a set amount of balls (usually 2) where no throwing pattern exists. Whoever gets the ball has the shot.
Some restrictions may apply. For example, a player may ALWAYS get the ball back if he hits a cup. However, if a cup is missed, whoever can grab it first gets to shoot it. This method of play is often quite physical and often leads to injuries. Would you rather say you got beat up from a football game or an intense game of beer pong?

Winning the game

If the opposing team makes the last cup, the other team must usually make either all remaining cups or simply one cup, depending on "house rules", or the opposing team wins - this is called a rebuttal or redemption.[

A shutout rule is a house rule usually stated before a game or during the game in the midst of a shutout. If the shutout does occur the losing team must do whatever the two teams decided on, such as going streaking or drinking a large quantity of beer

Game Ending Situations: 

Note: redemption round means last turn by the team on the verge of losing. Just as in a regular turn, if two shots are made in a row you get another bonus round keeping the game alive.

  • The opposite team has 1 or 2 cups left. If your team hits two in a row there is no redemption

  • If the other team has one cup left and you only hit one out of 2 shots the other team has 2 shots (one for each player) to sink your remaining cups. If they sink the rest of your cups they force overtime regardless on whether they hit one or two.

If a team hits the remaining cups during redemption overtime is forced. Overtime consists of each team setting up 3 cups in a triangle format using a beverage to fill them up. The team who hit the last cup first shoots first in overtime. Overtime is played like a normal game with the same rules applied (i.e. overtime can be forced again following the same process).

Misc. Rules:
Cups are rearranged after 2 cups are hit to a diamond formation (1 cup, 2 cups, then one cup). All taunting must be done behind the table (if you interfere and hit the other teams shot you have to take a cup away).

Don't Forget to Bring a Towel!!

Well, of course you need a towel to clean all kinds of drunken messes' occurring during beer pong.

Water Cups

Make sure you also add using water cups to your list of beer pong rules! Wash the ball off every time it hits the ground, or just get in the habit of sloshing the ball in the water cup before every turn!
You dont want to drink the lint, dirt, hair, and whatever else the ball picks up off the ground.

Keep a Stash of Pong Balls

One thing that can interrupt an intense game of beer pong is when you miss a shot and then a drunkard steps on the ball! And then you look in your pong ball stash and of course there are none left! If this hasn't happened to you YET, there is a 99% chance it will in the future.

The solution: Get a Mini Keg of Beer Pong Balls. It looks like a cool addition to any beer pong room. You can buy them on Amazon.

The Crane

You will run across this shot typically when playing people who are almost seven feet tall. Since these giants' heads graze the clouds near the ceiling when they try to shoot, they must lean over towards the cups, outstretching their arm and releasing the ball around the center line on a ping pong table. Though many five plus footers may attempt this shot, the seven footer has the true advantage with his massive wingspan. Combined with a high sniper point of view, this shot is usually deadly and results in [too] short beer pong games.

To avoid the crane, make sure my opponents release the ball behind the table. Another good rule is to have the elbow lined up with the end of the table.

 Moms and grandmas can crane if they want. 

Strip beer pong: 
New twist on a classic

Beer pong has many different variations - however, none so interesting (to me) as Strip Beer Pong.
This game can be called many things - Strip Beer Pong, Beer Pong Strip, Stripper Pong or any number of other names. For simplicity's sake, Were going to call it Strip Beer Pong.

Beer Pong at a tailgate party is epic. But Strip Beer Pong while tailgating will make you legendary.

This is assuming there are men AND women playing the game! PLEASE!

Unless it's all woman only and I can watch!

To play Strip Beer Pong, you set the game up pretty much the same as you usually do. Now take a Sharpie (or some other worthy permanent marker) and write an article of clothing on each cup - for example, shoes, shirt, pants, bra and so on. When someone from the other team makes a shot into one of your cups, you have the option to either drink the contents or remove the article of clothing named on the cup. If you strip, the cup stays in play. If you strip and that same cup is made again, you must drink the contents and remove it from play. In the case of a bounce shot, the cup must be drank AND the article of clothing must be removed.

If you want to switch things up from classic beer pong, this seems like the perfect way to do it.


What size cups do I use? Sixteen ounce Solo or Dixie cups are the most common. You will have to fill them about a fourth way up or they will tip over if you happen to be playing an opponent whose beer pong shot is comparable to Peyton Mannings rocket arm.

How much beer do I use?!  That depends on how fast you plan to be drinking! Most games with 2 person teams use 3-4 beers in a ten cup game. Of course, you can use as much as fits in the cup if you really want. Just make sure when you sink a cup your opponent drinks his/her beer before shooting.

What do I use to shoot?  Beer pong balls! Also known as ping pong balls, they are just the right weight for beer pong. They are consistent in the air yet hard to master shooting.
Some people use quarters or bottle caps but that gets to be very easy once you get the hang of it.

How do I rack the cups? Organize the cups in a triangle formation with the pinnacle of the triangle pointing towards your opponents. Make sure the cups are close to your end of the table and make the rims of every cup touch each other.
see diagram  also  see Racks

Who shoots first?  You can flip a quarter, or shoot eye-to-eye to determine the first shot. To shoot eye-to-eye, lock your eyes with your opponent and shoot at the same time. Whoever sinks a cup first gets to shoot in the game first.

When do I re-rack? If you are playing ten cup beer pong two or three re-racks are typical. If you want to play a quick last game before you go party, re-rack after every made cup when your side has only four cups out of ten left.

Teams have many possibilities for re-racks

Some houses allow for re-racking, which is also known as rearranging or consolidation. This is when teams can get their cups rearrangements into different formations once or twice and even more as dictated by the rules of the house. For example, a team with three remaining cups may ask the other team to "re-rack" their multiple targets into a single triangle formation. In the event that a "lone cup" is left one the table, a player can call lone cup infinitely and upon hitting the cup is awarded a bonus cup.

Can I distract the shooters or swat the ball?  Umm, you can distract your opponents however you please, but touching the ball in mid-air is an automatic one cup penalty.
However, you CAN swat the ball if it hits the table or cup and bounces up!

Are there special throws? Yes, if you can bounce the ball in a cup without the other team swatting your ball to smithereens, that counts as two cups.

How do i dominate? If you and your partner sink the same cup, that's an extra cup bonus! PLUS, the other team skips a turn and you get the balls back. If you start a game and don't miss a shot, your team can win the game without even giving the other team a chance!

I lost! Do I get any second chances? There is a rebuttal shot after the last cup is made, so you do have a chance to tie it up and play a three-cup overtime.

There are a few optional rules you can add to spice up your beer pong games:

Death Shot: If you aren't up to the task of drinking your beer before you shoot each turn, your opponent can sink the cup you are drinking! The game is over and you feel shame for not drinking your beer promptly.

Celebrity Shot - Spectators who have been eagerly following your game can request a celebrity shot if they are feeling lucky.



Definitions: Some key words used to describe different aspects of beer pong.

Blowing: A technique used to keep a ball that is rimming a cup from dropping in the cup. If you blow the ball while it is rimming a cup, the ball will often exit the cup. This technique is sometimes banned or reserved only for girls.

Formation: The arrangement of cups for the game. Examples may include 6-cup, 10-cup, 12-cup, etc. Furthermore, the cups may be spaced, together (touching), or random.
See diagram

Get Them Back: Used to describe a situation when the game is being played with 2 balls. If a team hits two shots in a row with each of its balls, then they may get to have the balls back in order to have another turn. If a team never misses, it is possible that the other team may never get more than 1 shot.

"Let it ride": Used to describe a way of playing beer pong where you are not allowed to interfere with a ball's chance of hitting a cup. In other words, no blowing and no swatting. As an opposing player, you may interact with a thrown ball only after it is certain that it will not land in a cup.

Overtime: If a team hits the remaining cups during redemption overtime is forced. Overtime consists of each team setting up 3 cups in a triangle format using a beverage to fill them up. The team who hit the last cup first shoots first in overtime. Overtime is played like a normal game with the same rules applied (i.e. overtime can be forced again following the same process).

Not Spaced: A formation of the cups in which, guess what, the cups are not spaced. Instead, they are in a formation in which they are touching each other. Contrast with spaced cups.

Redemption: An opportunity to still be in the game if all of your cups are hit. If the opposing team hits all of your cups, having redemption would give you the opportunity to shoot at your opponents' cups until you miss. If you end up hitting all of the opponents' cups, you have a tie game. A tie game may be resolved in an overtime game, or if the players involved are of the feminine kind, we suggest an all out mud wrestling match may best resolve the issue of a tie game. (Contrast with sudden death).

Reform: Re-arranging the formation of cups. For example, if there are only four cups left, you may arrange them in a diamond. Three may be arranged in a triangle. Some versions of beer pong reform, others don't.
Check the House/Night/Game rules, or make them yourself.

Spaced Cups: Cups have space between them. They may be evenly spaced (possibly just enough space to pass a ping pong ball through) or they may be randomly spaced.
Contrasted with not spaced.

Sudden Death: The game ends when the last cup is hit, i.e., no redemption. Sudden death may also occur when each member of a team hits a cup in order to finish off the other team's cups. The team would get the balls back, but since there are no longer any cups for them to throw at, the game is over.

Swatting: A technique used to keep an opponent's ball from hitting one of your cups. Essentially, if the ball takes a bounce, you are free to swat it away.
This technique is sometimes not allowed.


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