The Facts About The USBC & Storm Agreement With National Tournament Exclusion & Ball Exchange Program

The ball models mentioned in the official USBC Press Release remain USBC approved.
For those participating in the national events listed we will offer you an exchange. For those who are unaffected by the national tournament exclusion rule, you can continue to use these products in league and approved tournament play.

The United States Bowling Congress and Storm Products have agreed on a national tournament exclusion rule and ball exchange program for six Storm Products manufactured ball models. The agreement comes after USBC identified the models having a percentage of balls produced below USBC minimum 73D hardness specification.


USBC’s investigation showed a percentage of these ball models measured below the USBC-required hardness level of the approval samples submitted by Storm. Storm collaborated with USBC after being notified of this testing.

The affected models include:

Effective March 30, 2022, these balls models are prohibited from use in USBC national tournaments, including, but not limited to, the USBC Masters, U.S. Open, USBC Open Championships, USBC Women’s Championships, all PWBA Tour events, USBC Junior Gold and Youth Open Championships, USBC Intercollegiate Championships, USBC Team USA Trials, USBC Senior Masters and USBC Senior Queens.

Essentially, this mostly impacts the people who bowl the USBC Open Championships, USBC Women’s Championships and USBC Junior Gold & Youth Open. Only a small percentage of players compete in the other events like the USBC Masters and Team USA trials. 

These ball models remain USBC approved. Each USBC competition, whether tournament or league, has the option to adopt USBC’s national tournament rule prohibiting use of these balls or to continue to allow their use.

STATE, CITY & LOCAL tournaments and events may adopt the rule but I would imagine most to not adopt the rule due to hurting potential entries from members. 

Can I continue to use my bowling balls in league? 

YES! Also any honor score that has been shot will be allowed and all future awards will also be allowed using the bowling balls in question.

SANCTIONED LEAGUES can not adopt any rule changes without 100% written consent of every team captain USBC RULE 102C #2 Page 28. Moving forward also leagues can choose to allow or disallow before the start of new leagues to allow or disallow these bowling balls.

What if I purchased these bowling balls to use in the USBC National events? How do I exchange them? 

Storm will offer owners of the affected balls the option to exchange their balls for a new product. Information about the exchange program will be published later this week on

Can I still purchase these bowling balls and use them if this rule does not affect me? 

YES – Pro shops and online retailers with inventory can sell them until inventory is gone but as part of the agreement, Storm Products will discontinue sales of the affected balls. Storm will not be making any new ones for sale so the supply will be limited. 

USBC has concluded its investigation and will not be taking action on additional balls related to this production issue.

“Storm appreciates USBC working with us on this agreement, so we can put the issue behind us and focus on our customers,”

Storm Products President Dave Symes said. “Customer satisfaction has always been our top priority, and we will take care of our customers.”

This agreement does not change the status of the Storm Spectre. The Spectre remains unapproved and on USBC’s non-conforming ball list.

Go to to learn more about the equipment specifications.

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7 thoughts on “The Facts About The USBC & Storm Agreement With National Tournament Exclusion & Ball Exchange Program

  1. Clayton Buttman says:

    I submitted for a Wolverine as a replacement for my Spectre that was banned. The Wolverine is now banned for USBC National tournaments which I don’t care about but I don’t think I want to risk getting a replacement ball that State & Local associations may decide not to allow. As of this date I haven’t received the Wolverine & as I understand this article if I don’t plan on using a banned ball in anything other than league, State or Local events, Storm is not going to even offer a replacement ball to league bowlers like me. Over the past twenty years I have bought 35-40 Storm/Rotogrip balls & if this is the case I have bought my last Storm product & will find other options with one of the other manufacturers available. I didn’t create this problem, either your company or the USBC or both have created this dilemma & I refuse to be the collateral damage without a fight.

  2. Tom Hakes says:

    Now what do we do ? I turned my Storm Spectre in to my l;ocal pro shop and I agreed to exchange for the Wolverine and that is now banned also. I guess this means I can’t use any replacements or receive no exchange ball that sucks !

  3. William Smith says:

    How do I start the process to return my UFO Alert, I can’t seem to find the form and instructions to start the process

    • Clifton Barnes says:

      We will issue you a return label free of charge if it is an undrilled bowling ball, if it is drilled you would need to send back to Storm and purchase a UPS label from the local UPS or Fedex store. – thanks

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