personal foul


Definition of personal foul 

: a foul in a game (such as basketball) involving usually physical contact with or deliberate roughing of an opponent — compare technical foul

Examples of personal foul in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Both were assessed a technical, with Allen also receiving a personal foul. Matt Eppers, USA TODAY, "Rookies Grayson Allen and Trae Young scuffle during Summer League game," 6 July 2018 Payne rumbled 21 yards on the return, which included an impressive open-field move to make running back Travis Etienne miss, and drew a 15-yard personal foul penalty as Tremayne Anchrum yanked him down with a horse collar. USA TODAY, "The Latest: Alabama stifles Clemson to reach title game," 1 Jan. 2018 The owners will also consider allowing personal fouls such as roughing the passer and hits on defenseless receivers to be subject to review. Zach Berman,, "What to expect from Eagles at NFL meetings," 25 Mar. 2018 If there is an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty or personal foul by the defense on a field goal, the kicking team will have the option to have the penalty enforced on the ensuing kickoff. Pete Grathoff, kansascity, "NCAA approves radical rule change on kickoffs | The Kansas City Star," 13 Apr. 2018 Dragic was given a personal foul and technical foul. Alysha Tsuji, For The Win, "Goran Dragic got tech after slapping the back of Ben Simmons' head in Game 5," 24 Apr. 2018 The tie-up with Green, which resulted in a personal foul on Stephenson and free throws for Green, looked part headlock and part jump ball. Michael Singer, USA TODAY, "Headlock or jump ball? Explaining controversial Lance Stephenson-Jeff Green play," 23 Apr. 2018 Watch: Joe Borgia, NBA Senior Vice President of Replay & Referee Operations, appeared on Inside the NBA @NBAonTNT to discuss the Lance Stephenson-Jeff Green play toward the end of the game in which Stephenson was called for a personal foul on Green. Rob Tornoe,, "Ending to Cavaliers-Pacers game confused TNT analysts Chris Webber and Kenny Smith," 23 Apr. 2018 But Brunson went to the bench with 10:51 to play after picking up his fourth personal foul and Michigan showed some life, cutting the deficit to 56-44 on Matthews’ layup with 9:08 remaining. Joe Juliano,, "Donte DiVincenzo leads Villanova to NCAA championship in 79-62 win over Michigan," 2 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'personal foul.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of personal foul

circa 1829, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

30 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for personal foul

The first known use of personal foul was circa 1829

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More Definitions for personal foul

personal foul


English Language Learners Definition of personal foul

basketball : a foul that involves physical contact with an opponent

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