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Basketball Team Shooting Drills

Basketball Team Shooting Drills

Incorporating the right basketball drills for a team makes all the difference for coaches at the youth level. Coaches need to gauge the skill and talent they’re working with, instituting a practice plan to maximize the growth of these young players. Developing specific basketball skills early sets both the player and the team up for success, so picking the best basic shooting drills for kids can be a good place to start.

One of the most important parts of any coach’s practice plan is the incorporation of basketball shooting drills. These drills are valuable no matter the level of the team or the talent of the individual player. Shooting remains a key aspect of the game, and only through repetition and focus can a player improve.

For coaches, finding the right drills for your team can be frustrating. Depending on the team’s level and the talents of the gathered players, coaches sift through dozens of drills, searching for the right series. It’s important for a coach to understand their team’s ability and continuously push them to improve.

When developing shooting drills, a good coach must consider what types of shots they want to focus on. Drills should reinforce the skills that will help the players perform within the context of a game. So shooting drills should be designed around shots that would normally result from a team’s offensive actions. The best basketball shooting drills are representative of a team’s base offense.

3-2-1  Basketball Shooting Drill

Basketball Shooting DrillsThe 3-2-1 basketball team shooting drill involves at least two players and is a high-volume, high-repetition practice. Over the course of one or two minutes, non-stop, a single shooter progresses through a series of jump shots. The other player rebounds and feeds the shooter from near the hoop.

The shooter begins behind the three-point line for their first shot. From there, the shooter moves into the midrange for their second shot. The last shot in the sequence is a layup (which is worth one point). The rebounder keeps track of the shooter’s score as their teammate progresses through the drill. After the time is up, the players switch roles.

This shooting drill provides valuable practice for any shooter, regardless of talent-level. The shooter must move, set their feet and find a repeatable release. Even the other player gets reps at securing rebounds and making solid passes.

This drill can incorporate internal competition as well. The two partnered players can compete with one another, or with another pair at another hoop.

Basketball Team Spot Shooting Drill

Basketball Shooting DrillsTeam Spot Shooting is one of the most valuable basketball shooting drills. This practice sequence emphasizes form shooting and positioning, all within the framework of a team competition.

This drill involves a set number of players progressing through a series of shots on the floor. The group might start at the short corner, then move to the elbow, free throw, opposite elbow and opposite short corner.

In order to progress to the next spot, the group needs to make a designated number of shots in a row. Once the group has made three from the short corner, for example, they move to the elbow. But if they miss at the elbow, a coach can signal either that the team runs or returns to the previous spot.

This drill can be redesigned as a practice game as well.

 

 


Related: Keys to Coaching Youth Basketball

Resources:


High School Hoops Podcast

High School Hoops

Ep: 120. Basketball Shooting Drills for Any Level


If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Keys to Coaching Youth Basketball

Keys to Coaching Youth Basketball

Coaching youth basketball can be one of the most challenging jobs in the sporting world. Deciding what to focus on in practice to prepare these young players for competitive games remains a difficult decision. Juggling the expectations of players and parents makes practice planning a stressful endeavor.

Being a great coach means doing more than designing dynamite plays. A great basketball coach stands out as a teacher, confidant, and even a cheerleader. Sure, the fundamentals of the game must be practiced and developed, but so too are the unmeasurable skills of attitude, respect, and teamwork.

Coaching youth basketball successfully often comes down to a combination of philosophy, intangibles, and fundamentals.

Philosophy of Coaching Youth Basketball

Perhaps the most important part of coaching youth basketball is keeping the game fun for these young players. The likelihood that any of the players on a give youth team becomes a professional basketball player remain miniscule. So many of these kids come to the game to have fun and for a physical outlet. Successfully coaching youth basketball often comes down keeping things light and putting the players in a position to learn and grow.

Communication stands out as an integral part of any coaching philosophy. Team meetings should happen early and often, and clear communication with parents is a must. Keep any postgame talks to a minimum, instead leveraging practice time afterwards to address shortcomings and mistakes. And when dealing directly with individual players, sandwich any specific corrections with compliments. Being positive will serve to lift the young players up.

Intangibles of Coaching Youth Basketball

Intangibles tend to be the thing some people forget when coaching youth basketball. This is especially true for former players transitioning to the coaching side of the sport, or coaches coming down from elite levels to try their hand with kids.

Developing a positive attitude from day one remains a must for anyone coaching youth basketball. Patience is key because these young players often don’t have a grasp of the fundamentals and struggle to complete basic drills. Basketball can be frustrating, but playing sports is still a great primer for overcoming adversity in other parts of life.

Positive attitude transitions seamlessly to two other key intangibles for coaching youth basketball: Respect and Sportsmanship. Kids are always watching, so how coaches interact with other adults, like the officials, other coaches, parents, etc., will influence their behaviors. Coaches must remember that they’re role models for their young players, so they must behave with courtesy and manners. The basic principles of respect and sportsmanship start with the coach at the very first practice of the season until that final whistle.

During the season, the intangible of teamwork should be front-and-center for any coach. Having the kids learn to be supportive and selfless teammates engenders the other intangibles above.

Fundamentals for Coaching Youth Basketball

What a coach must focus on will vary from team to team, season to season, and certainly level to level. Evaluating the skills the young players possess often dictates the starting point for a season. Using a competitive practice model might help the players prepare for the competition of real games, but a skills-based approach might be necessary instead.

The basic skills any youth basketball player needs to master to be successful includes:

  • dribbling equally well with both hands
  • shooting layups equally well with both hands
  • throwing bounce, chest, and overhead passes
  • shooting the ball with proper form
  • moving without the ball

These fundamental skills remain the building blocks for any successful basketball player. Coaching youth basketball often includes developing drills to assess these skills and ultimately grown these skills.


Related: Writing Your Basketball Coaching Philosophy


Resources:


Coaching Youth Hoops Podcast Episodes


Coaching Youth Hoops podcast5 Things I Wish I Had Known About Coaching Youth Hoops

The Skills Needed for K-2 Players

Thoughts on Running A Youth Basketball Camp

Basketball Skills for Grades 3-5

 

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Best Basic Shooting Drills for Kids

Best Basic Shooting Drills for Kids

Incorporating the right basketball drills for kids makes all the difference for coaches at the youth level. Coaches need to gauge the skill and talent they’re working with, instituting a practice plan to maximize the growth of these young players. Developing specific basketball skills early sets both the player and the team up for success, so picking the best basic shooting drills for kids can be a good place to start.

Finding the right balance for your practice is key. You want your players to practice hard, hone their skills, and become better basketball players. But you also want them to have fun. Coaching at the youth level takes plenty of patience and positivity. You’ll need to incorporate a fast pace and keep your players occupied and engaged, especially during potentially monotonous skill development drills. Developing focus and fun at practice remains an integral effort for coaches at the youth level of the game.

While there’s no magic formula for practice planning or picking drills, leaning on your experience as a head coach often shows the right path for your players. Here’s a look a some of the best basic passing drills for kids.

Proper Shooting Form

It’s important for young players to learn the proper shooting form early so as to not develop bad habits that can be hard to break. Although the kids will want to start shooting immediately, coaches must make them understand chucking the ball does more harm than good. And becoming a great shooter isn’t an easy thing to do!

A good approach to teaching shooting form involves the nemonic “BEEF.” Beef stands for Balance, Elbow, Eyes, Follow Through.

Balance often refers to a shooter’s stance. While there’s no specific stance to teach, generally the feet should be about shoulder-width apart, turned slightly, with the lead foot forward a bit and knees bent. For Eyes, shooters should look in the direction of the rim. While there’s no one spot that must be taught, players can focus on the rim.

The shooter’s elbow remains the key to a shot’s accuracy. Players should try to set the shooting eye, the shooting hand and elbow, and the rim all on the same line. The shooting motion involves the hand and elbow getting under the ball, making an up and out motion. Make sure the elbow doesn’t flare out. Once set, the wrist should hinge at an angle with the forearm.

Follow Through is the release. The shooter should snap their wrist as the ball is released at the same time the elbow is fully extended. The ball should roll off the index and middle fingers to produce a backspin. Shooters should keep their arm extended and not let the off-hand push the ball at an angle on release.

Remember, this shooting method is designed to simplify the approach for inexperience players and kids just coming to the game. It’s not something to teach to more experienced players since it doesn’t address the nuances of great shooting.

Basic Shooting Drills for Kids

Teaching the proper shooting fundamentals remains integral for coaches at the youth level of basketball. Here are some of the best basic shooting drills for kids to help in that process.

Form Shooting

To practice the basic shooting form, kids can participate in this drill with a partner or a group of three. Form shooting allows the players to practice not only the right way to shoot, but also develop concentration. This drill remains ideal for coaches in a station setting.

Shooters begin at a given spot on the floor, depending on their strength, ability, and perhaps position. The shooter should assume the proper stance (hands up, knees bent, feet set) and await a pass. The player catches the pass and comes up shooting. Each player should take 10 shots before progressing to another spot. After another 10 attempts, the player moves to a third spot.

This drill works as a good warm-up before practice, or as part of a larger station rotation for coaches. Stress to each player the need to use the proper form, practicing each element to develop that muscle memory.

Step-Back Shooting

Another one of the valuable basic drills for kids is step-back shooting. This exercise helps players develop and improve their shooting touch with each repetition.

Shooters begin directly in front of the rim for this drill. Players should start low with the ball and arc the shot up over the rim, finishing high with the release. Shooters need to hold their form until the ball passes through the net, taking five shots in total. After the last make, the shooter should step back one and make another five shots. The shooter continues until they reach the foul line.

This drill provides direct reinforcement of the basic shooting form kids should learn. Coaches should stress hand and finger placement, as well as the motion of the elbow, as part of their instruction.

Knockout

A fun competitive game to incorporate into your practices is knockout. This enjoyable shooting drill provides kids the opportunity to learn proper form while under pressure and with a heightened sense of urgency.

Players line up in single-file at the free throw line. The first two players in line have a ball and the drill begins with the first shot attempt. If the first shooter makes his free throw, he retrieves the ball and passes to the next person in line. Then he joins the back of the line. If he missed his shot, he must grab the rebound and make a layup before the next shooter makes their attempt. Should the first shooter can make a layup before the second player scores, he’s still in the game. If the second shooter makes a shot before, the first player is eliminated.

Each time a player takes and misses a shot, the next player in line shoots to try to knock them out. Hence the name of the game. The drill continues until only one player remains, the winner.

There are several points of emphasis for this drill. Each player should maintain proper mechanics and form when shooting. Keep your head up and be aware of other players. Coaches can also stress form with layup attempts and return passes.


Related: Best Basic Passing Drills for Kids


Resources:


Coaching Youth Hoops Podcast Episodes


Coaching Youth Hoops podcast5 Things I Wish I Had Known About Coaching Youth Hoops

The Skills Needed for K-2 Players

Thoughts on Running A Youth Basketball Camp

Basketball Skills for Grades 3-5

 

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Best Basic Passing Drills for Kids

Best Basic Passing Drills for Kids

Incorporating the right basketball drills for kids makes all the difference for coaches at the youth level. Coaches need to gauge the skill and talent they’re working with, instituting a practice plan to maximize the growth of these young players. Developing specific basketball skills early sets both the player and the team up for success, so picking the best basic passing drills for kids can be a good place to start.

Finding the right balance for your practice is key. You want your players to practice hard, hone their skills, and become better basketball players. But you also want them to have fun. Coaching at the youth level takes plenty of patience and positivity. You’ll need to incorporate a fast pace and keep your players occupied and engaged, especially during potentially monotonous skill development drills. Developing focus and fun at practice remains an integral effort for coaches at the youth level of the game.

While there’s no magic formula for practice planning or picking drills, leaning on your experience as a head coach often shows the right path for your players. Here’s a look a some of the best basic passing drills for kids.

Basic Passing Form

While most kids will want to start with shooting or dribbling drills, it’s important for every coach to incorporate basic passing drills early on in a player’s development. Coaches can’t assume kids will be good passers when first coming to the court. Bad passes destroy offensive possessions, while good passing creates scoring opportunities. Many turnovers come as a result of poor passes. So it’s integral that your young players learn the proper mechanics for bounce, chest, and outlet passes.

Coaches should demonstrate proper form for their players to mimic. For a basic chest pass, players should step into the pass and snap the ball off with their thumbs going through the ball and pointing toward their receiver. Chest passes are not overhead lobs. They should hit their receiver in the chest.

For the bounce pass, passers can start from the triple-threat position. The player should snap the ball off with their pass, but it should hit the court about three-fourths of the way toward the receiver. The resulting bounce from the pass should reach the receiver’s waist. 

For overhead outlet passes, the players should be further apart. The passer snaps their pass off with some arc, but not so much that the ball floats to the receiver. The pass should be thrown hard and can lead the receiver down the court if need be. 

Players catching the pass need to practice proper form as well. The receiver needs to provide a target with his hands extended to make the grab. After the catch, receivers should immediately turn into a triple-threat position.

Best Basic Passing Drills for Kids

After demonstrating the basic form for basic passing drills, it’s time to divide the players into groups to try their hand at these drills. Below are some of the best passing drills for kids just beginning in the game of basketball. It’s good for coaches to pair players for these drills so the kids can practice both passing and receiving.

  • Rapid Fire Chest Passing Practice

Players begin this drill with one ball and facing each other, about two feet apart. The first passer starts the drill by passing to his partner and immediately taking two short steps back. The receiver catches the ball and passes it right back. After each pass, the first player retreats two steps, while the receiver stands still. Once the first passer has made five passes, he starts moving back toward the receiver with each pass.

This drill should feature 10 passes total before switching players. Coaches can alter this drill by having both players retreat or return with each pass or having the players alternate with bounce passes. Be sure to stress to players the proper passing form, especially stepping into their passes as the distance grows. Players can practice this drill at home by using a wall.

  • Two-Ball Line Passing Drill

For this basic passing drill, three-to-five kids line up along the key arm-length apart with one passer facing the line. The passer has one ball and one of the players in the line does as well. The passer should set up on the opposite line of the key.

To start this drill, the passer snaps a chest pass to one random player in the line. The moment that happens, the player in the line holding the second ball passes back to the passer. The passer must catch and make a return pass to any receiver who does not have the ball. The passer slides along the key to catch and return passes as quickly as possible. Coaches should stress form once again as well as vision. The passer must keep his eyes up and react with each progression.

  • Man in the Middle

For this basic drill, coaches need to form passing groups of three kids each. Each trio uses one ball, with the passers facing each other anywhere from 10 to 20 feet apart. The third player in the group is the man in the middle. This player acts as a defender, trying to deflect or steal each pass as it’s made.

The two passers work together from a relatively stationary position, although a single dribble left or right is allowed to create a new passing angle. Coaches should stress triple-threat position and pivoting for the passers. Players can work on ball fakes to make the defender move. Passes in this drill can include chest, bounce, or overhead outlets. Tell players not to float passes that allow the defender to recover while the ball travels.


Related: Best Basketball Drills for Kids


Resources:


Coaching Youth Hoops Podcast Episodes


Coaching Youth Hoops podcast5 Things I Wish I Had Known About Coaching Youth Hoops

The Skills Needed for K-2 Players

Thoughts on Running A Youth Basketball Camp

Basketball Skills for Grades 3-5

 

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

5 Fun Options for Basketball Fundraising

5 Fun Options for Basketball Fundraising

When someone says the “f-word,” that word may have a totally different meaning to high school coaches. That word to high school basketball coaches could easily mean fundraising. Unlike big level college programs (and some big-level high school programs), most coaches have to fundraise any money they need for their program. This money could be used to buy the players their gear, basketballs for the program, jerseys, or any other thing that may come up over the course of a basketball season.

Fundraising is one of the many things that falls onto the plate of a head coach once that coach moves 6 inches over on the bench. It is something that is often overlooked or not thought of but could be a huge stressor on a coach and program if not done properly. This article will go through several different fundraising ideas to help generate money for your program.

Basketball Fundraising Options

Below are just five different fundraising ideas to help your basketball program. There are two keys for every fundraiser though: First, find a fundraiser you’re passionate about promoting. Second, be organized and make sure all of your ducks are in a row.

Golf Scramble

This may be the most common type of fundraiser for any high school athletic program. A golf scramble gets players on teams of 4, everybody plays the best ball at each hole, and is a way to make a lot of money.

The best way to maximize profits in a golf scramble is to have a great relationship with a local golf course to maximize profits on your teams, get at least 1 hole sponsor for each of your holes, and any items you can auction off is a great bonus too!

Bowling Bash

A bowling bash is just like a golf scramble but in a bowling alley instead! People form teams of four and the highest score across three games from one of the teams is the winner!

Some keys are to provide food/drinks just like in a golf scramble. Try to acquire lane sponsors instead of hole sponsors. And any auction items would be a great way to help increase revenue.

Chicken Dinner

We are located in the midwest and if there’s one thing midwest people love is fried chicken! We have hosted an annual chicken dinners for the last five years. The key is finding a local restaurant that is willing to donate the chicken and sides at cost and their time to cook the chicken.

Our goal every year is to sell 300+ chicken dinners. We host it on a Sunday during lunch time to hit the church crowd that is looking for lunch after church. Our players serve the food, clean up the tables, and we can generate some great revenue in a short amount of time. Pro Tip: Be sure to offer carry-outs as an option!

Sponsorships

A very simple way to help generate some money is selling sponsorships to local businesses. This could be done in the way of a banner, PA announcement at games, or air time if your games are broadcasted.

The key is to target businesses who have supported your program over the years. Ensure they receive some recognition for their sponsorship.

Dinner/Dance

Another way to generate a large amount of revenue, but this may possibly be the most work of all these fundraising ideas. An ideal time to have this would be close to Valentine’s Day to make it a date night for the couples.

You want to rent out a large enough facility to house all of your guests, book some form of entertainment (DJ, live band, etc.). And have lots of items to auction off. Ideas to auction off could be sporting memorabilia and/or local experiences.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Building a Basketball Program

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep: 657 Lifting In season and Fundraising

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Best Basketball Drills for Kids

Best Basketball Drills for Kids

Incorporating the right basketball drills for kids makes all the difference for coaches at the youth level. Coaches need to gauge the skill and talent they’re working with, instituting a practice plan to maximize the development of these young players. Finding the right balance for your practice is key. You want your players to practice hard, hone their skills, and become better basketball players. But you also want them to have fun.

Coaching at the youth level takes plenty of patience and positivity. You’ll need to incorporate a fast pace and keep your players occupied and engaged, especially during potentially monotonous skill development drills. Developing focus and fun at practice remains an integral effort for coaches at the youth level of the game.

While there’s no magic formula for practice planning or picking drills, leaning on your experience as a head coach often shows the right path for your players. Here’s a look a some of the best basketball drills for kids.

Basketball Drills for Kids

Developing simple, fun, and effective drills for kids at the youth basketball level might be one of the most difficult parts of the job for any coach. When dealing with beginners, it’s important to layer skill development and not overwhelm the kids with complicated basketball drills. Coaches often zero-in on the basics, which include dribbling, passing, rebounding, and shooting.

Red Light, Green Light Dribbling Drill

Children, especially competitive ones, love the game Red Light, Green Light. This basketball dribbling drills plays off that popular kids game. Assuming you’ve worked with the basic form for dribbling, this game engages the young players on two fronts, control and vision. It teaches players to keep control of the ball while keeping their head up.

The coach stands on one end of the court while the players lineup on the opposite baseline. Each player has a ball and begins dribbling in place. The goal of this drill is to be the first player to make it to the opposite end of the floor while controlling his dribble.

While the original game has someone call out “red light” or “green light,” this version works best if the coach has colored sheets of paper red, green, and yellow. The red paper represents “stop,” which signals the players to control their dribble in place. The green paper represents “go,” which signals a speed dribble forward. The yellow paper can then represent “reverse,” which signals a retreat dribble.

Using the colored papers forces the players to look up at the coach while they’re dribbling. If a player performs the wrong action, they have to return to the baseline.

Knockout

At time-honored tradition before and after practices, Knockout represents more than just a silly, time-killing tradition. For young, competitive players, this drill helps develop quick shooting skills and in-game concentration. Kids learn to shoot under pressure and with a heightened sense of urgency in this basketball drill.

Coaches need two balls to start this drill. Each participating player lines up starting at the free throw stripe, with the first two players holding the balls. The game begins when the first player shoots the ball. The second player then follows with his shot.

What happens next depends upon whether or not the shots drop. If the first shooter makes his free throw, he retrieves the ball and passes to the next person in line. Then he joins the back of the line. If he missed his shot, he must grab the rebound and make a layup before the next shooter makes their attempt. Should the first shooter can make a layup before the second player scores, he’s still in the game. If the second shooter makes a shot before, the first player is eliminated.

Each time a player takes and misses a shot, the next player in line shoots to try to knock them out. Hence the name of the game. The drill continues until only one player remains, the winner.

There are several points of emphasis for this drill. Each player should maintain proper mechanics and form when shooting. Keep your head up and be aware of other players. Coaches can also stress form with layup attempts and return passes.

Passing Tag

Another engaging basketball drill for kids is one called Passing Tag. In this drill, the passers are “it” and try to tag the other team while working off only their pivot foot. Passing Tag incorporates basic passing skills, as well as footwork and communication. Players also learn how to move without the ball.

The set up here can use either the half court or only the space inside the three-point line. Coaches create two teams, the passers and the runners. The passing team should start with only two or three players, whereas everyone else can be a runner. Coaches call for the start of this drill and runners immediately move through the designated space.

Passers look for each other and pass at strategic points. When a player catches the ball, he can pivot to try and tag one of the runners with the ball. If the tag is made, that runner can either be out or added to the passers team.

Points of emphasis for this drill include moving without the ball and making the right pass. Players learn to use their pivot foot and avoid traveling. Coaches can shrink the playing area as the drill continues. Coaches can also add a defensive layer to this drill where the runners can knock or intercept passes for points or to add players back to their team.


Related: Best Basic Passing Drills for Kids


Resources:


Coaching Youth Hoops Podcast Episodes


Coaching Youth Hoops podcast5 Things I Wish I Had Known About Coaching Youth Hoops

The Skills Needed for K-2 Players

Thoughts on Running A Youth Basketball Camp

Basketball Skills for Grades 3-5

 

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

5-Out Motion for the Rule of 3 Basketball Offense

5-Out Motion for the Rule of 3 Basketball Offense

The Rule of 3 basketball offense provides coaches with a concise offensive set up to help your team succeed. This offensive approach works against man and zone defenses and makes operating on that side of the floor easier. Some continuity offenses can be difficult to digest, but the Rule of Three basketball offense remains clear with straightforward principles. A key point of emphasis for this basketball offense is 5-Out Motion

What the Rule of 3 offense does for a basketball coach is provide a pared down approach that highlights the strengths of a given team. The key to any good offense is finding the openings, and this does just that. This offense remains predicated on ball movement, player movement, and spacing to create scoring opportunities.

Rule of 3 basketball


5-Out Motion for the Rule of 3 Basketball Offense


5-Out motionFor the Rule of 3 basketball offense, using 5-Out motion often provides the most space for your team.

The term “5-Out” references the fact that all offensive players on the floor are starting outside the three-point line. Typically, the setup features one player at the top, two on the wings, and two in the corners.

The 5 Out alignment is the base for the Rule of 3 offense. All five positions are interchangeable but can be set up to match locations with player skills.

This “position-less” offense relies on floor spacing and a set of basic movement that assist players to determine actions.

The basic concept for 5-Out Motion features an easy-to-understand set up: cut and replace. Each of the five spaces along the perimeter should be occupied by an offensive player.

When one player cuts, his teammates shift along the perimeter in corresponding fashion. If too many players end up on one side, the coach could call to “balance the floor” from the sideline.

5-out motion

A good way to start teaching 5-Out Motion on a pass is to have the passer cut to the basket with everyone rotating to replace the open slot. The only exception to this rule is a pass from the corner.


5-Out Motion: Pass and Cut Drill


5-out motion provides basketball teams at any level a key structure. This is especially true for youth basketball teams. This set up forces players to make decisions by reading the play of their teammates and defenders. It remains a great tool for teaching players how to play basketball.

One drill to teach basic 5-Out motion to your basketball team is a simple pass-and-cut drill.

5-out motion

This drill begins with Player 1 making a pass to the wing. From there, that player cuts to the basket. When that cut occurs, everyone behind the pass rotates to fill the open space along the perimeter. Player 1 takes the open space in the corner after his cut.

Next, the ball is passed to the right again and the passer cuts to the basket. Once again, the weak side players rotate to fill all open spots. The only exception to this rule is a pass from the corner. A pass from the corner results in a short cut and retreat. A pass up from the wing to the top results in the corner player rotating up to fill on the wing, making sure all five players participate in station movement.

Stress to your players the key concept of great spacing. If they’re in the right positions at the right time, the offense should be wide open. This approach opens driving lanes and minimizes quick help from opposing defenders. 

Coaches can teach 5-Out Motion in progressions to avoid their players getting overwhelmed learning an entire offense all at once.


Get started with the Rule of 3 Offense Course HERE!


Related: What’s the Mesh Point in Rule of 3 Basketball?


Resources:


The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1465 Rule of 3 Offense

What’s the Mesh Point in Rule of 3 Basketball?

What’s the Mesh Point in Rule of 3 Basketball?

The Rule of 3 basketball offense provides coaches with a concise offensive set up to help your team succeed. This offensive approach works against man and zone defenses and makes operating on that side of the floor easier. Some continuity offenses can be difficult to digest, but the Rule of Three basketball offense remains clear with straightforward principles. A key point of emphasis for this basketball offense is the mesh point.

What the Rule of 3 offense does for a basketball coach is provide a pared down approach that highlights the strengths of a given team. The key to any good offense is finding the openings, and this does just that. This offense remains predicated on ball movement, player movement, and spacing to create scoring opportunities.

Rule of 3 basketball

The Rule of 3 Offense Basketball Mesh Point

The “Mesh Point” in the Rule of 3 basketball offense remains perhaps the most pivotal part of this scheme. Simply, the mesh point is the place where a screen occurs on the basketball floor. It’s at this juncture that the screen and the cutter need to read their defenders to determine the next progression in the offense.

Mesh Point basketballThe mesh point remains the focal point of the Rule of 3 basketball offense. In the graphic shown here, the mesh point becomes the moment when Player 1 sets a screen for Player 3.

Both Player 1 and Player 3 see multiple options depending upon how the defenders choose to play this action.

Since Player 3 receives the screen, he gets to read the defenders at the mesh point first. His options include a slice cut, a curl cut, or to cut high.

After Player 3 makes his read at the mesh point, Player 1 follows with his read on the basketball floor. Player 1’s options include a slip to the basket, to screen away for the wing, or pop high after a curl.

The offensive players should look to vary their cut based on the defender. Each offensive player should look to take advantage of the momentary confusion any unexpected movement caused the defense.

Several key fundamentals need reinforcement from basketball coaches when working through mesh point reads. First, drill the proper form for setting screens. Next, drill how to operate off screen as the cutter. Finally, drill how to “slip” a screen. When preparing to read the defense, teach your players which cut to use. Stress the value of varying cuts to create confusion in the defense.

Get started with the Rule of 3 Offense Course HERE!


Related: Basketball Terms for the Rule of 3 Offense


Resources:


The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1465 Rule of 3 Offense

Key Basketball Terms for the Rule of 3 Offense

Key Basketball Terms for the Rule of 3 Offense

The Rule of 3 basketball offense provides coaches with a concise offensive set up to help your team succeed. This offensive approach works against man and zone defenses and makes operating on that side of the floor easier. Some continuity offenses can be difficult to digest, but the Rule of Three basketball offense remains clear with straightforward principles. Using the basketball terms for the Rule of 3 is key.

What the Rule of 3 offense does for a basketball coach is provide a pared down approach that highlights the strengths of a given team. The key to any good offense is finding the openings, and this does just that. This offense remains predicated on ball movement, player movement, and spacing to create scoring opportunities.

Rule of 3 basketball

The Rule of 3 Offense Basketball Terms

Learning the different basketball terms out there remains a challenges for many young players and new coaches. Understanding the key words for a variety of offenses and defenses, as well as the myriad rule violations, makes digesting this information often a daunting task. The Rule of 3 offense is no exception in regards to basketball terms.

So before you and your team dive into the ins and outs of the Rule of 3 basketball offense, you’ll want to know the key terms.

General Rules:
  • 5-Out
    • Starting position for the offense.
    • All 5 players are outside the 3-point line and spaced evenly: point, both wings and both corners.
  • Mesh Point
    • In the Rule of 3 offense this is the place where a pick occurs, and the picker and cutter need to read their defenders.
  • “Balance the Floor”
    • Coach call when too many players are on one side of the floor and not in the 5-Out positions.
Passer Options:
  • “Slip”
    • Rule of 3 picker option to cut to basket after setting pick for cutter.
  • “Pop”
    • Rule of 3 picker option to pop to the 3-point line after reading the cutter using the pick to cut to the basket.
Cutter Options:
  • “Slice”
    • Rule of 3 cutter option to cut straight to the basket when using pick.
  • “Curl”
    • Cutter option to curl into lane off the pick in the Rule of 3
  • “Fade”
    • Rule of 3 cutter option to fade to sideline rather than use pick to cut high.
Weakside Options:
  • “Interchange”
    • High and low weakside offensive players exchange positions to keep defenders busy.
  • “Up or Down Pick”
    • High and low weakside offensive players exchange positions by one picking for the other.
  • “Pin & Skip”
    • Weakside interchange with one man picking and the other fading to the 3-point line vs. sagging defenses.

Get started with the Rule of 3 Offense Course HERE!


Related: How to Promote Your Basketball Program


Resources:


The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1465 Rule of 3 Offense

What is the Rule of 3 Basketball Offense?

What is the Rule of 3 Basketball Offense?

The Rule of 3 basketball offense provides coaches with a concise offensive set up to help your team succeed. This offensive approach works against man and zone defenses and makes operating on that side of the floor easier. Some continuity offenses can be difficult to digest, but the Rule of Three basketball offense remains clear with straightforward principles.

What the Rule of 3 offense does for a basketball coach is provide a pared down approach that highlights the strengths of a given team. The key to any good offense is finding the openings, and this does just that. This offense remains predicated on ball movement, player movement, and spacing to create scoring opportunities.

Rule of 3 Basketball Offense: Basic Concepts

The Rule of 3 basketball offense operates from either a four-out or five-out set. The 5-out alignment clears the key and leverages cutting lanes. It’s looking to force defenders into difficult choices, then attacking the open spaces that result. This offensive approach focuses on what cuts, positions, and scoring opportunities you can get based on reading the opposing defender.

The offense features several basic concepts players need to understand. First, everyone moves on every pass. All cuts are based on reading your defender. So, every defensive overplay should result in a backdoor cut. Every pick is a potential slip opportunity. Finally, and perhaps most important, keep the lane clear.

These basic concepts help maximize the effectiveness of the Rule of 3. Each player understands they’re moving with each progression. This shifts all the pressure to the defense. To leverage the movement and stress on the defense, offensive players should limit themselves to about three dribbles. From there, make a move to score or make the next pass.

Advantages of the Rule of 3

Continuity offenses like the Princeton offense or the Read and React stand out as effective options for some basketball coaches. However, these offenses often feature numerous layers that can be daunting for young players to memorize and call upon. Players hesitate, thinking through a progression, which allows defenses to counter.

The advantages of the Rule of 3 basketball offense include:

  • Players don’t have to memorize different plays
  • They learn how to play basketball by reading and reacting to what the defense does
  • It’s hard to scout and defend because cuts aren’t predetermined
  • It can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be

This freedom allows basketball coaches to mold their offense to the talent-level of their team that season. The flexibility of this offense is such that players will adjust with each possession, learning more efficiently in both practice and games.

Not forcing players to memorize specific movements for a set removes the anxiety many young players feel on offense. It helps each player develop a high basketball IQ. Learning how to read and react appropriately is also a valuable skill outside of basketball.

Perhaps the best part of installing the Rule of 3 for basketball coaches is, the unpredictable nature of this offense makes it hard to scout. Players might cut differently each time down the floor, depending upon what their defender does or how their teammates move. And the flexible nature of this offense allows coaches to add complexities as players gain confidence.

Get started with the Rule of 3 Offense Course HERE!


Related: How to Promote Your Basketball Program


Resources:


The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1465 Rule of 3 Offense

How to Promote Your Basketball Program

How to Promote Your Basketball Program

Promoting your basketball program might not be front and center in the minds of coaches heading into a new season. However, this concept remains an integral part to the long-term health of your program. Developing a culture of excellence that produces results on the court stands obviously as the most difficult part of a coach’s job. But branding can often provide that promotional push to get your program to the next level.

So the question becomes: how to promote your basketball program? The answer stretches from your school community to social media.

Promote Your Basketball Program on Local News Outlets

One of the simplest, and most time-honored, ways to promote your basketball program comes from providing key information to local news outlets. Although traditional media continues to evolves, local newspapers often rely on high school content to fill out their sports sections. This can be as simple as sending a schedule and roster to start the season, in hopes of regular game coverage.

Once the season starts, send statistics and game recaps after every game. This will help establish a rapport with the local beat writer covering high school sports and make your program more likely to be featured. Consistent coverage could get your program’s names in front of more eyes. This can also help expose talented players for potential college recruitment.

You can pitch unique ideas for potential feature pieces to promote your basketball program. And should the news outlet provide an on-site reporter, make sure you and some of your players are available for comment.

Promote Your Basketball Program Through Community Involvement

Another way to promote your basketball program is to have your players and coaches engage within the school and local community. Many students need service hours helping charitable organizations as part of school or scholarship requirements. Some schools are encouraging their student athletes to average 15 to 20 hours per semester helping community organizations.

Getting your players involved benefits them in that regard and it can help with team-building. Some of the options for community involvement include:

  • clothing drives
  • food drives
  • holiday toy drives
  • volunteer hours at homeless shelters
  • basketball clinics for middle or elementary school players

Engaging in these activities will provide a boost to team morale and help those in need in your community. Be sure to notify local news outlets for coverage to extend the promotional reach of these activities. Any feature pieces that come from these events showcase your basketball program in a positive light.

Clinics also provide a platform to introduce local young talent to your program and your coaching style. It cultivates a beneficial relationships within the local basketball community and may give you an inside track for up-and-coming athletes.

When possible and appropriate, your players should wear their uniforms or other team paraphernalia to help promote the program and demonstrate unity.

Promote Your Basketball Program on Social Media

Perhaps the best way to promote your basketball program these days comes via social media. Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube, even Facebook, provide platforms where teenagers and some parents remain active. According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, surveys show that 90 percent of teens between the ages of 13 and 17-years-old use social media.

The best way to promote your basketball program on social media comes with consistent fan engagement. Some of the best ways to do this include:

  • Posting season schedules
  • Reminding fans of game days and encouraging fans to attend
  • Showing some of your team’s game highlights

If you’re not tech or social media savvy enough, or lack a comfort level with this platform, there’s no doubt the players themselves will have ideas of what and how to post. Perhaps putting this responsibility on a team manager or young assistant coach would work.

With social media, it’s important to be consistent and engaging with fans and your school community. Never go extended periods without posting on some platform. This engagement can be a fun and exciting way to promote your basketball program, and to do so on platforms where students and the school community will undoubtedly see it.


Related: Basketball Player Evaluation Form for Tryouts

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1354 Building a Basketball Program

Basketball Player Evaluation Form for Tryouts

Basketball Player Evaluation Form for Tryouts

Any basketball coach knows the pressure of conducting fair and effective tryouts. No matter skill level, age, or competitive setup, picking the right players to populate your team stands as one of the most challenging choices to make. That’s why having the right basketball player evaluation form is integral for your tryouts.

Often times, developing your tryout can be more difficult that even setting up a playing rotation. Tryout day stands as one of the hardest yet most important days on the calendar. How a coach assembles to roster has wide ranging implications for the season.

Basketball Tryouts Form Opinions for Key Player Evaluation

The first question any coach needs to ask themself is: what type of team will you have? The answer to this question will largely influence the types of drills you select. These drills will be staples of any practice plan, but they’ll also be valuable evaluation tools during tryouts.

Key aspects to consider are skill and athleticism. Transition drills often provide an effective measure for these areas. In these drills, players need to demonstrate how well they run and what type of shape they’re in, as well as how they control the ball and finish. From there, higher level transition drills can evaluate decision making skills as well.

Station work tends to give coaches the opportunity to measure specific basketball skills for individual players. This becomes particularly effective for coaching staffs with multiple members. That said, even if you’re working alone, having the players rotate through stations gives you a glimpse of each player’s skill level in a given area. These stations can include ball handling, form shooting and free throws, among other things.

Grouping players together for small competitive games also provides basketball coaches with solid information for the player evaluation form. Organize players into 2-on-2 or 3-on-3 competitions to see how they operate in a team environment. In these small group environments, it’s harder for players to “hide.”

Another important element to consider exists outside the basic skill and athleticism evaluation. The intangible skills of communication and teamwork often separate a player’s effectiveness on the floor. Incorporating drills that push these skills to the forefront provide coaches with important information about each player. These drills or situations can shine a light on players with leadership potential. 

Areas of Evaluation

The Basketball Player Evaluation Form provides space for coaches to consider several different skills and traits for each player. Among those areas are offensive skills like shooting, dribbling, and passing. In addition, defense and rebounding skills need measurement. Other general areas on the form include athletic ability, coachability, and game play. Finally, the form provides space for overall strength evaluation.

Basketball Player Evaluation Form Downloadable PDFS:


Related: Conducting Effective Basketball Tryouts

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Bonus Episode: Conducting Basketball Tryouts

Teach Hoops

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Basketball Continuity Offense

Basketball Continuity Offense

Coaching basketball at the youth level invariably involves dealing with zone defenses. The most common zone, 2-3, allows developing teams to hide certain players on the defensive end. It can also frustrate offenses to no end, especially if the offensive players tend to stick to their spots. So, as zones become more and more common even at the game’s highest levels, it’s integral that every coach knows exactly what they want to do when attacking a 2-3 zone. Using a continuity offense often helps.

One of the most common misconceptions to combating a good zone is the reliance on distance shooting. Teams might have a reliable zone-buster on their team, capable of consistently draining three-pointers. But the reality is most defenses would rather their opponent launch from deep rather than attack for higher percentage shots near the rim.

Continuity Offense Attacking a 2-3 Zone

Continuity offense stands as one of the most valuable approaches to attacking a 2-3 zone. These plays and sets create a rhythm and offensive flow that allows the team to stress the opposing defense. Offensive players know where to go as each pass is made within the continuity. The constant flow forces the defense to adjust, not only to each pass but also to each cut.

attacking a 2-3 Zone

The set up for this continuity offense involves using a 1-3-1 counter to the 2-3 zone. 1 brings the ball down, with 2 and 3 on the wings. 4 occupies the high post, while 5 takes the low post. The initial action is a pass to either wing. 4 reads that initial pass, then cuts with the ball to that strong-side corner (or short corner).

From there, 5 presents as a low-post option and 2 cuts across from the opposite wing. 2 flashes to the open elbow area, while 1 makes a flare cut to the opposite wing. 3 reads the movement of the defense before making the next pass. If 2 doesn’t immediately receive the ball at the elbow, they lift to the top of the key.

attacking a 2-3 Zone

The continuous element of this continuity offense comes if the defense recovers through the initial movement. 3 gets the ball to 2, who reverses to 1. As the ball switches sides, both 4 and 5 cut to the new strong side of the offense. 4 makes the baseline cut behind the zone, while 5 flashes to the opposite low post.

As the ball reverses, 3 makes the cut across, flashing to the open elbow. 2 makes a flare cut to the opposite wing, away from the ball.

Keys to Attacking a 2-3 Zone

The first, and perhaps most important, key to attacking a 2-3 zone remains not settling for a three-point shot. Of course, if a three-pointer comes as a clean result of an offensive action, then by all means take it. But too often, teams settle for threes against zones because they can’t consistently pressure the paint. Approaching the zone with a one-pass-shot, or ball-reversal-shot, gets the defense off the hook.

Another key to combatting the zone is movement. Many times, the offensive players stand around and the zone shifts with each pass. The offense occupies set positions during the possession in hopes of finding an opening. The reality is, the openings won’t appear until more than just the ball moves. Accompanying a pass with a hard cut, filling the vacant spots, and forcing the defense to account for the movement stresses the rigidity of the zone.

A forgotten key against a zone defense is offensive rebounding. With defenders occupying designated areas instead of checking specific players, boxing out becomes problematic. Facing any zone creates lanes for offensive players to crash the boards on missed shots. The misses often result in scramble situations which could yield good scoring opportunities.

The final key to dealing with this defensive set up is learning how to screen the zone. While ball screens are typically staple counters against man-to-man defense, learning to screen the zone forces the defense to immediately adjust their alignment. If the defense doesn’t adjust, huge openings appear within the zone itself. Using a continuity offense helps.

Variations to this Continuity Offense

A variation for this set could involve 5 cutting to the corner or short corner, then 4 cuts into the low post. This would be an option of the 4 and 5 are interchangeable on offense.

Another variation involves using a skip pass. If the defense overplays the elbow cut, or overplays the potential ball reversal at the top, the wing can use the skip pass to the opposite side. As that skip is happening, 4 and 5 make their cross cuts like normal.

A drawback to running continuity will always be the defense learning the cuts that are coming. Adding a slight variation to the progression might catch the defense off guard. Varying this continuity with an overload option should yield good looks.

In the overload, 1 makes the initial wing pass, but instead of cutting away, 1 cuts to the strong side corner. From there, 5 turns and screens the middle of the zone and 4 flashes to the open low post area. 2 can stay wide for a skip pass or cut up to the top of the key.

attacking 2-3 zone

It’s key for the offensive players to be patient when attacking a 2-3 zone. Force the defense to adjust to each pass and cut before settling for a shot. The initial progression through the continuity might not yield openings, but as the offense moves, the defense must remained disciplined. If the defense is slow to adjust, the openings will be there.


Related: Key Basketball Warmups: Hamstring Stretches

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1365 10 Keys to a Good Zone Offense

Key Basketball Warmups: Hamstring Stretches

Key Basketball Warmups: Hamstring Stretches

When athletes enter the weight room, what is one of the first things they want to work on? A lot of times, they want to develop their arm definition. While this is important, from an athletic perspective one of the most underrated muscles are the hamstrings. For any basketball player, no matter the level, hamstring stretches remain key to strengthening an important muscle and avoiding injury.

Let’s start with this basic question: What must all athletes (particularly basketball players) be able to do? Run, jump, stop on a dime, etc. Hamstrings play a very important role in all of those athletic movements!

On top of all of those things all athletes need to do, one thing all coaches and athletes want to avoid is injury. Strong hamstrings help the knee bend and absorb shock from the variety of athletic movements that all athletes perform.

With all of that being said, it is important that when athletes enter the weight room they are performing movements to help strengthen their hamstrings. For our program, we try to hit the hamstrings as much as we can from our daily stretching to our strength training exercises. What this article is going to do is provide some of our favorite basketball hamstring stretches and strengthening exercises with some videos attached to show how to properly perform these movements in the weight room.

Basketball Hamstring Stretches Movement 1: Squat

There are 2 main types of squats: Backsquat and Front Squat (you can also start your front squat from the rack too which this video does not show). While the squat is more targeting the quads, the hamstrings are also getting hit as well in stabilizing the athlete when they are getting out of the squat. We have performed both the backsquat and front squat in our program.

The squat in general is one of our favorite exercises to do due to the fact it targets so many lower body muscles, including the hamstrings.

Basketball Hamstring Stretches Movement 2: Deadlift

Romanian Deadlift (RDL for short). The RDL is slightly different from the traditional deadlift in that it is specifically targeting the hamstring. The lift looks fairly similar to the deadlift with the variant being you are holding the barbell the entire time, sliding the bar down your legs to your shin area, and bringing the weight back up all while keeping your back straight.

It is important in this exercise to stress keeping a straight back and not arching it.

Basketball Hamstring Stretches Movement 3: Leg Curl

The Lying Leg Curl can be done in 1 of 2 different ways: If you have a machine, you can utilize the machine that is specifically designed for these leg curls. What we started to do recently in our lifting is using our long resistance bands to do our lying leg curls (we made this change because our machine is broken at the moment).

This movement is designed specifically to isolate the hamstrings to help build up their strength.

Basketball Hamstring Stretches Movement 4: Kettlebell Swings

Kettlebell Swings not only work the hamstrings in the squatting movement but they also helps build up strength in the upper body too while being up some cardio.

The important thing to remember when performing a kettlebell movement is to get great depth on your squat like also keeping your back straight.

Basketball Hamstring Stretches Movement 15: Bridge

You can perform the Glute Bridge in a variety of ways: traditional glute bridges, weighted glute bridges, or banded glute bridges. The glute bridge is great because it’s not only targeting the hamstring. It also targets the glute, abs, and lower back. It is great for athletes who may have some back pain to help ease some of the burden off the back. We have implemented glute bridges in our daily stretching routine to help build hamstring strength.

There are a multitude of movements that are centered around strengthening the hamstring. It is important that you have movements that you enjoy teaching, your athletes enjoy performing, and at the end of the day, getting athletes that are getting stronger.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Basketball Pre-Game Warm Up Drills

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep: 302 Pre-Game Warm Up

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Back to School Checklist for Basketball Coaches

Back to School Checklist for Basketball Coaches

Summer is winding down and back to school shopping has commenced. That can only mean one thing: We are getting closer to the start of basketball season! With the hurry to prep for the new school year, it’s easy to forget this point remains pivotal for most programs. So having a back to school checklist for basketball coaches comes in handy.

Girls basketball practice in Indiana starts in the middle of October. So when school starts, that means we are about 9 weeks from the start of practice. There are certain things that need to be completed at the beginning of the school year, and those things need to start happening when the school year begins. Here are 5 things a basketball coach needs on their checklist to kickstart a successful basketball season.

Back to School Basketball Checklist: Set Up Fall Workouts

In Indiana during the fall sports season, we are allowed two days a week, up to two hours per day, to work with basketballs on the court. We are allowed any number of days for strength and conditioning.

It is important to communicate with those girls who are going to be participating in the fall workouts, your coaching staff, and any other personnel to decide on the best days that will be the most successful for your program. While these are opportunities, it is important to not over-schedule yourself. Don’t over-schedule your athletes either! You want to make sure you are fresh for when the season begins.

Back to School Basketball Checklist: Meeting With Parent Leader

We all know the importance of parents in our programs. They are our number one fans and want what is best for our athletes. We always schedule a fall meeting with our parent leader(s). Here we discuss pre-game meals, surprises for our team during the season, and any other important matters that may come up.

This is a fairly quick meeting, but a lot of important information is discussed and shared to make sure everyone is on the same page.

Back to School Basketball Checklist: Gear Selection

It is important to make sure all of your gear is ready to be ordered in a timely manner so that it is there for game one. We make sure our gear rep has great shoe selections, travel sweatsuits, t-shirts, polos, etc.

It is important to have the deadline from your rep to make sure everything is in your possession for the first game.

Back to School Basketball Checklist: Fall Athlete Schedule

We all have winter athletes who play a fall sport. It is important to let them know you care about them even when they are not playing basketball.

Find a system that works for you to have all those fall schedules laid out and try to make a game of all your fall athletes. Hit up a soccer game, volleyball match, football game, etc. to show those athletes you care about them more than just as basketball players.

Back to School Basketball Checklist: Make it Fun

At the end of the day, we are all getting a chance to coach the great game of basketball and be around some great young people. Enjoy your time doing this, as not many get this great opportunity. Do everything with a smile on your face and be passionate about what you are doing!


Related: Teaching Situational Basketball at the High School Level

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep: 794 Pre-Season Basketball Preparation

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The Basics of a Box and 1 Defense

The Basics of a Box and 1 Defense

The Box and 1 Defense stands out as possibly the most well-known “junk” defenses available to basketball coaches. This defensive strategy tries to limit the scoring opportunities of your opponent’s best player. This is accomplished by installing a combination defense that relies on both man-to-man and zone principles.

A Box and 1 takes your team’s best defender and task him with disrupting the playmaking opportunities of your opponent’s top perimeter scorer. At the same time, the additional four defenders will play a zone in the form of a box, hence “box and 1.” This defense requires excellent athleticism and anticipation on the part of the single defender, while emphasizing communication and rotation for the box players.

This defense stands built around the chaser’s ability to hound an opponent. The zone defenders cover the perimeter areas adjacent to their respective side of the floor or implement weak side defensive principles.

Pros and Cons of the Box and 1

The Box and 1 defense can be a polarizing topic among coaches. And, like other defensive schemes, this approach comes with advantages and disadvantages.

The most obvious pro to this defensive approach is trying to neutralize, or at least render inefficient, your opponent’s top offensive player. This remains particularly effective against teams whose offense is predicated around one player scoring the majority of points. The ball-denial aspect of this defensive approach often short-circuits an offensive possession, something that comes in handy in games using shot clocks or in end-of-game situations.

Another pro to using a box and 1 is it’s also very effective against squads with below average perimeter shooting abilities.

One significant con of this defensive strategy arises when your team’s best perimeter defender is also your team’s best offensive player. The chaser’s defensive responsibilities eat up his energy, which limits his offensive effectiveness. This approach leads to fatigue for the chaser, so ideally, this player isn’t your top scorer as well.

Perhaps the biggest con of installing a box and 1 defense comes from the formation itself. The middle of the floor often opens wide for the opposing offense, especially in ball reversal situations. One clear point of weakness is the high-post area. If the offensive team is able to get the ball into the high post, then the box and 1 becomes vulnerable to offensive tactics such as corner skip passes or high low action near the basket.

Other cons with this defense include isolating post defenders from help and creating potentially easier scoring opportunities for secondary playmakers.

Basic Rotations in a Box and 1 Defense

The basic formation of the box and 1 defense features the “chaser” matched up on the perimeter while the other defensive players set up the box on defense. This initial set up covers the elbows and well as both low blocks. Depending upon the initial offensive actions, the defense must communicate and rotate to cover.

The graphic below shows X2 as the “chaser” defender, matched up with offensive Player 2.

box and 1 defense

The initial offensive action in the figure above results in a pass to the wing. The box defenders prevented a dribble drive and forced that first pass. X1 follows the pass on the first rotation, while X3 rotates to the high-post or “nail” defensive position. X4 fronts a low post pass while X5 slides into the lane. X2 can shift into help-side position, but with the box and 1 defense, ball denial remains his main focus.

A pass to the corner involves additional defensive rotation. X4 applies ball pressure, while X1 slides to help side. X3 remains covering the nail and X5 covers any low post cuts. X2 remains tethered to Player 2.

Points of emphasis for these defensive rotations include: quick closeouts and communication. Defenders need to contest open jump shots, as well as prevent dribble drives.

Example 4If the offense gets the ball into the high-post area, the box and 1 becomes vulnerable to breaking down. The defense needs to adjust its rotations accordingly.

The primary method of mitigating that is to have one of the bottom zone defenders sprint up the lane to quickly cover the player with the ball. For this case, X5 covers 5 while X4 stays back to protect the basket.

In addition, one or both of the top zone defenders can help double team or triple team the ball to encourage the high post player to pass it to the perimeter.

The chaser, which is X2, shouldn’t sag off the target because the ball is in the high post. In other words, if X2 were to sag off, then Player 2 could easily receive the ball from 5 such as with a corner skip.

Players must communicate in this defensive setup. If they don’t, they will fail. Forcing players to talk and think on their feet as they scramble is making practice harder than what they will likely face in a game situation. Defenders must be aware of the ball handler. The ultimate goal is to stop the offense from scoring, so help defense must be alert and stop the ball when necessary.


Related: 3 Great Defensive Drills to Improve Help and Rotation

Resources:

The Coach Unplugged Podcast

Cover for Basketball Coach Unplugged ( A Basketball Coaching Podcast)

Ep 1406 Office Hours and Combination Defenses

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3 Great Defensive Drills to Improve Help and Rotation

3 Great Defensive Drills to Improve Help and Rotation

During the offseason, coaches often work on more efficient ways to use their practice time. One of the top approaches in this regard remains combining skills within certain drills. Layering concepts within specific exercises helps speed the process along for some players. One good examples of this is defensive drills designed to improve help side positioning and rotation.

If your players cannot closeout effectively on defense, your Help Defense scheme won’t really matter. Poor closeouts can destroy any defense. When developing your defensive drills, keep in mind how they want their team to improve over the course of the season. That improvement gets jumpstarted in practice with targeted exercises. Coaches often have a set of their favorite basketball practice drills aimed to do just that.

Here’s a look at three great defensive drills to improve the help and rotation for your defense next season. 

Defensive Drills: Overload Scramble

defensive drills

For most basketball offenses, putting the defense at a disadvantage is often the aim. These situations require a scramble mentality from the defensive players in order to recover. This manifests on the court in rotations and notably in transition to matchup. The overload scramble stands as one of the most effective defensive drills to teach just that.

Overload scramble forces your defensive players to communicate and rotate throughout the drill. The setup involves a 4-on-3 advantage for the offense, meaning someone will always be open. But defenders can keep things under control with good positioning and effort throughout the rep.

The ball starts on the wing, and the defenders leave the backside offensive player open. Defender 2 should shade toward the ball to negate a drive, while Defender 3 should sag back in more of a help-side position. As the ball is passed, defenders have to leave their player, scramble to cover the ball or be in a good help position. The ball can be skipped and players are allowed to dribble penetrate in their areas (but are mostly stationary early on as you learn rotation).

Points of emphasis for this drill include: Effective Close Outs and Effort. Your defenders should be going all out on closeouts, but stopping short to prevent dribble drives. Defenders should also put forth maximum effort. Make sure they are sprinting to areas. This drill can also be done as a 5 on 4 type of drill.

Defensive Drills: No Paint Penetration

defensive drills

The next one of the great defensive drills is called No Paint Penetration. This exercise aims to eliminate dribble drives into the lane. The mentality for the defense focuses on protecting the painted area and not letting the ball handler enter this space. Defenses that allow too much dribble penetration find themselves collapsing then rushing for closeouts.

The No Paint Penetration drill also allows defenders to practice proper defensive habits and rotations. This drill’s setup features four offensive players on the wing and four defensive players. The coach starts with the ball as the defenders matchup along the perimeter. Coach starts drill with a pass from the top. The object of the game is to keep the ball from penetrating into the lane.

With each pass, defenders should slide into either on-ball or help-side position. The offensive players should look to drive after the catch, and kick to another teammate if covered up. Offense gets a point if they penetrate into the lane, while defense gets a point for each turnover. The first side to three points win the set.

Points of emphasis for this drill include: Effective Close Outs, Effort, and Avoiding Excessive Fouls.Your defenders should be going all out on closeouts, but stopping short to prevent dribble drives. Defenders should also put forth maximum effort. Make sure they are sprinting to areas.

Defensive Drills: Whistle Change

The last of these defensive drills is called the Whistle Change. This drill incorporates the scramble mentality, but emphasizes communication above all. Often, the scramble matchup happens in transition, however, here it’s done in a half-court set.

The drill begins with a simple five-on-five setup where the offense tries to score on a possession. Defense should work in a man-to-man scheme, focusing on help-side positioning throughout.

When the coach blows the whistle, the offense puts the ball down and switches to defense. The defense quickly switches to offense. But here’s the twist, the players are not allowed to matchup with the one they were previously guarding/facing.

Someone on defense (anyone but the on-ball defender at the time), rushes to pick up the ball. The other defenders move to offensive roles, while the previous offensive players become defenders. However, the new defenders can’t matchup with the person who was previously guarding them.

Points of emphasis for this drill include: Communication and Stopping Penetration. Players must communicate in this drill. If they don’t, they will fail. Forcing players to talk and think on their feet as they scramble is making practice harder than what they will likely face in a game situation.Even though players are matching up in the drill, they must be aware of the ball handler. The ultimate goal is to stop the offense from scoring, so help defense must be alert and stop the ball when necessary.


Related: Defensive Closeout Drills for Basketball Practice

Resources:

The 5 Minute Basketball Coaching Podcast

Cover for The 5 Minute Basketball Coaching Podcast

Ep: 112 Building a Defensive Culture

If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Defensive Closeout Drills for Basketball Practice

Defensive Closeout Drills for Basketball Practice

During the offseason, coaches often work on more efficient ways to use their practice time. One of the top approaches in this regard remains combining skills within certain drills. Layering concepts within specific exercises helps speed the process along for some players. One good examples of this is defensive closeout drills.

Developing a practice plan can be one of the most daunting tasks for a coach at any level. Coaches need to consider the talent of their team when assembling the plan. They also need to keep in mind how they want their team to improve over the course of the season. That improvement gets jumpstarted in practice with targeted drills. Coaches often have a set of their favorite basketball practice drills aimed to do just that.

Basketball Practice Drills: 1-on-1 Closeout

If your players cannot closeout effectively on defense, your Help Defense scheme won’t really matter. Poor closeouts can destroy any defense. This one of the defensive drills helps improve individual closeout technique, much like the next one.

The 1-on-1 closeout drill remains fast-paced, keeping playing contesting shots and preventing dribble penetration. It forces individual defenders to practice within a game-like setup. Making this drill 1-on-1 adds a layer of accountability for each player.

The setup for this drill puts the defenders near the basket while the offensive players stand on the win. The defenders start with the ball and passes to the wing, following their pass. Each defender’s job is keep the ball out of the lane and force a contested jump shot. Following that, the defender must box out and rebound.

Points of emphasis for defenders in this drill include: Sprint To Eliminate Offensive Advantage, Keep Your Hands Up, and Position Appropriately. Variations of this drill can involve the passes coming from different angles and/or the “loser” staying on defense.

Basketball Practice Drills: Basic Defensive Closeout

Basketball Practice Drills

The first basketball practice drill that holds a great deal of value is a basic close out drill. This drill should be a regular for any team playing man-to-man defense. In addition, this drill aids in the instruction of help-side defense.

In this drill, two players start on the floor, occupying the wings. The defenders wait in a line beneath the rim and one positions himself in the “help side” spot in the lane. The drill begins with a skip pass from one wing to the other. The defender is expected to run from his help side position to close out on the shooter.

This drill can use a coach as the passer, or rotate players into that position. Coaches should emphasize defensive placement and positioning when integrating this drill. The close out defender should not over-run the shooter, but stop just before with one hand up.

This drill can be altered to force the shooter to drive baseline. The drill can incorporate another defender at that point, who also moves into help side positioning.

Here’s good video example of this drill.


Related: 3 Developmental Rebounding Drills for Practice

Resources:

 

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Ep: 376 3 Favorite Practice Drills from Coach Steger

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3 Developmental Rebounding Drills for Practice

3 Developmental Rebounding Drills for Practice

Rebounding can be the key between a win and a loss. Furthermore, rebounding can be the key to winning a championship. So when building out your practice plans, it’s important to incorporate rebounding drills. This remains especially true at the youth level.

A defensive rebound signals the end of a possession. The ball has changed hands and now the court flips. If you’re allowing your opponents to grab offensive rebounds, you’re extending those defensive possessions. Giving up offensive rebounds hurts momentum and often leads to surrendering easy baskets.

But rebounding isn’t only integral on defense. Offensive rebounds lead to put backs and help build your team’s confidence. If you can grab just five more offensive rebounds per game, that could equate to as many as 15 points more per contest. That’s something that can help your team win the majority of its games.

So here’s a look at three developmental rebounding drills for your youth basketball practice.

Rebounding Drills: Teach Technique

The key to becoming a good rebounder is understanding the form and technique. There’s more to becoming the next Dennis Rodman (from a rebounding perspective) than just jumping and trying to grab the ball. You need to find a player to box out, make contact, then explode to secure the rebound.

rebounding drills

For this rebounding drill, set up two lines on either elbow at the free throw stripe. Each line has its own ball. The players will toss the ball off the backboard, then race forward to secure the rebound. After grabbing the rebound, the player should plant, pivot, and pass to the next man in line.

This drill sets up a controlled environment in which the players can focus completely on the task of rebounding. Points of emphasis for this drill include instructing your players to leap as high as possible when going for the rebound. It’s important to high-point the ball. Players should land in a wide stance, with both hands securing the basketball.

Rebounding Drills: Outlets

The next of these three rebounding drills adds a layer of progression. The outlet pass remains one of the most important developmental skills for a rebounder. These passes can easily jumpstart an offensive possession. The best outlet passes get ahead of a defense and allow for a fast break.

rebounding drills

The set up for this drill mimics the previous one. However, in addition to the lines at the elbows, two more lines exist on the wings. The wing lines receive the outlet passes.

As with the first drill, the first two players will throw passes off the backboard and go get the rebound. Rebounders will pivot out and make a crisp outlet pass to the wing. The wing player then fires a pass to the next person in line.

Points of emphasis for this drill include rebounders going up strong with two hands, chinning the basketball on the grab, then landing with a wide base. The wing player should call for the ball by yelling “Outlet! Outlet!” from their spot on the perimeter. A variation of this drill might involve having the wing player start along the baseline or another spot, then running to the wing to receive the pass.

Rebounding Drills: Zone Boxout

The last of these rebounding drills involves using a zone defense set up. Rebounding stands as one of the weaknesses of a zone defense. Zones can be susceptible to allowing offensive boards if the proper rebounding technique isn’t used. This happens because offensive players come at different angles against a zone than a man-to-man defense.

This drill forces the defenders to find and contact their offensive counterparts before securing a rebound. Even if your team doesn’t run zone defenses very often, the principles of this drill remain valuable.

rebounding drills

For this drill, five offensive players stand on the perimeter, while two defenders await inside near the basket. Each player on offense is given a number, 1 thought 5.

The coach calls out two of those numbers as he attempts a shot. The defenders must find the two crashing offensive players and box them out before securing the rebound. In the graphic, the coach said 1 and 4. The defenders meet the offensive player and block them out, then crash the boards. You can rotate the groups as needed. This drill can also be completed with fewer players, including an option for three on offense and one defensive rebounder.


Related: 4 Steps to Get a Basketball Rebound

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Ep: 323 Rebounding Strategies


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5 Keys Areas to Improve This Basketball Offseason

5 Keys Areas to Improve This Basketball Offseason

For youth basketball players, the offseason remains a time for personal improvement. You want to get bigger, stronger, and faster for your upcoming season. You also want to develop those important skills to take your game to the next level. To improve during your basketball offseason, you’ll need focus and a clear plan.

Summer remains a pivotal part of the season for more than just the coaches looking to make the most of the offseason. It’s during spring and summer where developing players can sharpen their basketball skills ahead of tryouts in the fall and the winter’s regular season.

While there are ways to maximize training, when looking to improve during your basketball offseason, you should consider these five key areas.

Rest and Recover

Following the end of your basketball year, the first step to improve during the offseason is to rest and recover. This remains especially true if you sustained an injury during the season. However, even if you made it through your schedule without getting hurt, your body still needs time to recuperate.

Coming off an injury, it’s important to check in with your doctor to see if you’re healthy enough to compete in summer league or AAU basketball. The last thing you want to do is aggravate a pre-existing injury which could harm your availability for the coming season.

Heading into your basketball offseason, one of the best ways to improve is to take a timeout. Don’t jump right in to strength training and conditioning. Shift your focus to another hobby or outlet. After a period of rest and recovery, even consider playing another sport to help further develop your body.

Strength Training to Improve This Basketball Offseason

Th next key area to improve during this basketball offseason is strength training. No matter your current level, working on your body can only help your performance. This is especially true if you’re playing up a level in youth basketball. And ideal offseason development program sees three days of strength training per week.

A full-body workout three times a week stands as perhaps the best way to improve during the basketball offseason. A program of this style provides more volume that a normal “arm day” and “leg day” split. Doing a full-body routine three times weekly allows for greater development at a more consistent pace. You should be focused on growing your muscles at this point.

Make sure your workout program starts with a decent warm up exercise to get your blood flowing. From there, consider the following exercises to help you improve this basketball offseason. Some of the best exercises for this include Goblet Squats, Dumbbell Bench Press, Pull-Ups, Standing Overhead Press, and Bicep Curls.

Your routine should include three sets of a weight you can handle with good form. Consider eight to 12 reps per exercise. Rest a minute between sets. As you progress through your program, add weight once you notice you can complete 12 reps with good form. The ideal schedule to improve this basketball offseason sees you workout on three, non-consecutive days per week. (Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday, for example.)

Skills to Improve This Basketball Offseason: Ball Handling

Ball handling stands as one of the most important skills for basketball players at any level. So, it makes sense that to improve this offseason, you work on your handle. Developing a solid dribbling routine helps maximize your improvement efforts, especially since you don’t need a gym to practice this skill.

A good place to start with ball handling skills is control. Make sure you can manipulate the ball equally well with both hands in stationary dribbling exercises. To level up in this process, add a second ball to your stationary work. This improves awareness, control, and focus. Another exercise to incorporate is dribbling with one hand while tossing a tennis ball with the other.

Once your stationary work is compete, move on to ball handling drills on the move. Use cones if you have them and weave up and down a set space. Progress to crossovers, pull-backs, and back-the-back dribble moves. Incorporate hesitation moves as well. Once you’ve got that down, add more advanced dribbling practice.

Skills to Improve This Basketball Offseason: Shooting

The next step in your offseason program to improve for your next basketball season is shooting. If you want to see the floor consistently next season, you must be able to knock down shots when you’re open. Your ability and position should dictate some of the aspects to your shooting regimen.

Each shooting workout should consist of at least 100 jumpers. These shot attempts should be spread out to different areas of the floor, but it’s important to get shots up. Shooting is a repetitive motion, so you’re developing muscle memory with each workout. Work on developing rhythm to your shot attempts, focusing on repeating good form. Step into your shots with proper footwork. Remember, bring your weak side foot forward first.

Make sure your shot attempts come from spaces on the floor you would find yourself in a game. It makes little sense to perfect a post game if your coach never sets you there. If you can partner with a teammate for rebounding and passing, that might make things simpler. This also help with catch-and-shoot practice.

Finish your shooting workout with a set of at least 20 free throws. Make sure you repeat the same motion and routine to perfect your form.

Agility and Conditioning

As your basketball season draws closer, it’s time to incorporate agility and conditioning drills. These exercises help you improve during the offseason and give you a head start for the next basketball season. Don’t double up agility and condition with your strength training. These exercises should come on those days you’re not working through your strength training program.

One good agility drill to try is called the “Lane Agility Test.” This begins with you on the left elbow of the floor. Start by sprinting from the free throw elbow to the baseline. From there, laterally shuffle to the right lane line. Then, backpedal to the free throw line. Finally, laterally shuffle to your original starting point.

Complete this exercise at least three times. Make sure you’re facing the baseline throughout each rep. Don’t shift or lean your shoulders. Try to complete each rep as quickly as possible.

When you shift your focus to condition, consider High Intensity Interval Training. If you’ve been working to improve throughout the basketball offseason, you should be in pretty good shape at this point.

For this exercise, start on one baseline and sprint the length of the court to the opposite baseline. Turn and sprint back to complete the first rep. One set of this exercise includes four reps, or four sprints up and back. As you continue through your program, add more sets to this training exercise. But don’t forget to include a rest time, ideally 45 seconds, between sets.


Related: 5 Ways to Make the Most of the Basketball Offseason

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Ep: 601 Off-Season work ( Team, Player and Coach)


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Read and React Sets: Ball Screen Shooter Lift

Read and React Sets: Ball Screen Shooter Lift

In this ever changing world of trying to find ways to separate yourself from your opponent, it is important to take any step necessary to give yourself an edge over the opponent. We run Rick Torbett’s Read and React offensive system in our program and have enjoyed what it has brought to our players. The Read and React sets like the ball screen shooter lift can be tailored to get touches in specific areas of the floor.

One area where we as a staff felt like were falling short for our players was in a lack of set plays. We always know those times where we are going to need those quick hitters to get a quick bucket, but we wanted to avoid totally changing our system to just throw in a few quick hitters. What we decided to go with was sets using the principles of the Read and React.

What these sets did was allow us to get quick buckets using our offensive principles. But even if we did not need a quick bucket, it still got our players moving within our offensive parameters.

Read and React Sets: Ball Screen Shooter Lift

This play was inspired by watching the NCAA tournament a few years back. And we just applied Read and React principles to it. It is a simple ball screen look. However, while everyone is watching the ball screen action, you bring a shooter up on the backside behind the pick and roll. That player should get a good look at the basket.

read and react shooter

This Read and React set also begins with a 5-Out formation. The point guard, Player 1, initiates the action with a dribble-at move toward Player 5 on the wing. Player 2 keeps his defender spread wide by standing in the corner.

After Player 5 slips the dribble-at, Player 1 pull dribbles on the wing to bring Player 5 back for a ball screen.

The second action of this read and react set looks to get the shooter in motion. Player 1 utilizes the ball screen on the wing and attacks the lane. After setting the screen, Player 5 makes a hard roll to the basket.

read and react shooter

At this point, Player 2 completes the circle movement motion to lift on the wing.

Player 1 penetrates into the middle, with Player 5 occupying the defense with his roll. The defender for Player 2, the shooter in this read and react action, might help down if the defense tries to trap the ball handler.

After getting into the lane, Player 1 completes the throwback pass to Player 2 on the wing. This is a catch-and-shoot opportunity for Player 2.

The pick-and-roll action clears the backside along the wing for Player 2, who moves into the space following that action. This play can be run from either side of the floor, depending upon the set up of the defense and the hand preference of the driver.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Read and React Sets: 5-Out Attack

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Be sure to check out that episode for some great content on the journey of Coach Torbett, how Read and React came about, and the philosophy behind the offense.

Episode: 901 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 1)

Ep: 902 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 2)

Ep: 903 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 3)


If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Read and React Sets: 5-Out Attack

Read and React Sets: 5-Out Attack

In this ever changing world of trying to find ways to separate yourself from your opponent, it is important to take any step necessary to give yourself an edge over the opponent. We run Rick Torbett’s Read and React offensive system in our program and have enjoyed what it has brought to our players. The Read and React sets like the 5-Out Attack can be tailored to get touches in specific areas of the floor.

One area where we as a staff felt like were falling short for our players was in a lack of set plays. We always know those times where we are going to need those quick hitters to get a quick bucket, but we wanted to avoid totally changing our system to just throw in a few quick hitters. What we decided to go with was sets using the principles of the Read and React.

What these sets did was allow us to get quick buckets using our offensive principles. But even if we did not need a quick bucket, it still got our players moving within our offensive parameters.

Read and React Sets: 5-Out Attack

This Read and React 5-Out set gets the ball swinging side-to-side with lots of action to keep the defense occupied. If you have a player who is great at screening and slipping, this play will get them a look in the middle of the paint. If that look is not open, the ball ends up in the hands of a player who is great in a pick and roll look.

Read and React 5-Out

This Read and React set begins with a 5-Out formation. All five offensive players begin outside the three-point line to spread the defense out. This is effective against man-to-man defenses, particularly ones that like to deny passes and overplay.

Player 1 initiates the action with a pass to the wing. After the pass, Player 1 sets a weak side screen for Player 4. Once he’s set the screen, Player 1 cuts to the weak side corner as Player 3 fills up on the wing.

The second action for this set sees Player 2 center the ball with Player 4 at the top of the key. Once that pass is made, Player 5 and Player 1 both set pin screens on the perimeter. This action could create open looks for the shooters on the wing.

Read and React 5-Out

The next sequence of action involves Player 5 slipping the pin screen for a lay-up opportunity. Player 5 dives to the middle of the lane looking to post up his defender. Player 1, meanwhile, pops to the open space on the wing.

If those moves are covered by the defense, Player 4 passes to Player 1 then cuts away to screen for Player 2 in the corner. As Player 1 receives, Player 5 comes up the floor to set a ball screen.

This becomes a basic pick-and-roll action from the wing at this point. Player 1 can drive for a scoring opportunity or pass to a number of teammates. Player 2 will be shaping up on the wing, while Player 3 should do the same on the opposite side. The ball screener, Player 5, can roll while Player 4 sets up in the short corner.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Read and React Sets: Ball Screen Shooter Lift

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Be sure to check out that episode for some great content on the journey of Coach Torbett, how Read and React came about, and the philosophy behind the offense.

Episode: 901 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 1)

Ep: 902 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 2)

Ep: 903 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 3)


If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Read and React Sets: Dribble Handoff (DHO)

Read and React Sets: Dribble Handoff (DHO)

In this ever changing world of trying to find ways to separate yourself from your opponent, it is important to take any step necessary to give yourself an edge over the opponent. We run Rick Torbett’s Read and React offensive system in our program and have enjoyed what it has brought to our players. The Read and React sets like the Dribble Handoff can be tailored to get touches in specific areas of the floor.

One area where we as a staff felt like were falling short for our players was in a lack of set plays. We always know those times where we are going to need those quick hitters to get a quick bucket, but we wanted to avoid totally changing our system to just throw in a few quick hitters. What we decided to go with was sets using the principles of the Read and React.

What these sets did was allow us to get quick buckets using our offensive principles. But even if we did not need a quick bucket, it still got our players moving within our offensive parameters.

Read and React Sets: Dribble Handoff (DHO)

If you have a player that is a great downhill driver, this is the set for you! It gets every player on the court moving to confuse the defense. What’s more, this Read and React set allows that downhill player an opportunity to make a quick move/decision using the a dribble handoff. This move is also known as a “DHO.”

Read and React Dribble Handoff

This Read and React dribble handoff set begins with a 5-Out look. This spread formation forces the defense into help side coverage and creates multiple driving lanes.

The set starts with Player 1 making a pass to Player 4 on the wing. Once he initiates the action, Player 1 cuts to the weak side corner, away from his pass. As Player 1 makes his cut, Players 3 and 2 should fill up along the perimeter.

The second action in this set sees Player 4 center the ball to Player 3, then immediately sets a down screen for Player 5. This action occupies the defense on that side of the floor to set up the attacking action of this play.

Read and React Dribble Handoff

The attacking action of this Read and React set comes following a dribble handoff. Player 2 should be your team’s best creator using a ball screen. The movement of this set brought him to the wing and has opened the lane for a drive.

Player 3 initiates the dribble handoff move with a dribble-at toward the wing. Instead of cutting away from the ball, Player 2 receives the handoff and immediately works downhill to pressure the defense. At this point, both corners should be occupied by shooters. If Player 4 doesn’t have three-point range, he can slide up to the short corner. That move, though, could bring a help defender sooner.

As Player 2 attacks the lane, he can drive to the rim, kick out to shooters, or pull up for an elbow jumper.

Ideally, this 5-Out set involves your best shooters to space the floor. Player 2 should be your best decision maker with the ball. Also, this set can be run from either side of the floor to give the downhill driver access to their dominant hand.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Read and React Sets: 4-Out

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Be sure to check out that episode for some great content on the journey of Coach Torbett, how Read and React came about, and the philosophy behind the offense.

Episode: 901 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 1)

Ep: 902 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 2)

Ep: 903 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 3)


If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

Read and React Sets: 4-Out, 1-In

Read and React Sets: 4-Out, 1-In

In this ever changing world of trying to find ways to separate yourself from your opponent, it is important to take any step necessary to give yourself an edge over the opponent. We run Rick Torbett’s Read and React offensive system in our program and have enjoyed what it has brought to our players. The Read and React sets like 4-Out can be tailored to get touches in specific areas of the floor.

One area where we as a staff felt like were falling short for our players was in a lack of set plays. We always know those times where we are going to need those quick hitters to get a quick bucket, but we wanted to avoid totally changing our system to just throw in a few quick hitters. What we decided to go with was sets using the principles of the Read and React.

What these sets did was allow us to get quick buckets using our offensive principles. But even if we did not need a quick bucket, it still got our players moving within our offensive parameters.

Read and React Sets: 4-Out, 1-In

This Read and React set is utilizing the 4-Out, 1-In look from the Read and React System. The set provides a player who’s good working off a ball screen to isolate on one side of the floor. 

Read and React 4-Out

For this Read and React 4-Out set, start with Player 4 on the inside. This puts your best post finisher, Player 5, in the corner to begin. Your point guard initiates the action with a pass to Player 2 in the corner. Player 2 should be your best pick-and-roll creator.

Once Player 1 makes the pass, he receives a back screen from Player 4 and makes a UCLA cut to the basket. As this happens, Player 5 sets a pin screen for Player 3 on the weak side. For Player 2, this first action can also be a catch-and-shoot opportunity.

The second action of this Read and React 4-Out set involves a ball screen. Most of the strong side has been cleared for this action to take place along the wing. Player 4 should pop to the corner or short corner once he’s set the screen. On the weak side, Player 1 sets a back screen for Player 5, to get the big man in post position.

Read and React 4-OuThe last sequence for this set leaves the decision-making to Player 2. After using the ball screen, Player 2 can attack the rim looking for a shot. Another option is kicking back to Player 4 in the corner or short corner.

As Player 2 drives, Player 3 should complete the Read and React Circle Movement into the weak side corner. That could be a clean look if the opposing defense shifted in help-side coverage.

Player 1 sets up on the wing for a catch-and-shoot opportunity, while Player 5 establishes post position on the weak side block. This set can be run from either side of the floor so that the driver uses his dominant hand on the take.


Kyle Brasher | Gibson Southern High School
Lady Titans Basketball Coach


Related: Read and React Sets: Post Finish

Resources:

Coach Unplugged Podcast

Be sure to check out that episode for some great content on the journey of Coach Torbett, how Read and React came about, and the philosophy behind the offense.

Episode: 901 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 1)

Ep: 902 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 2)

Ep: 903 Read and React with Rick Torbett (Part 3)


If you found this useful, don’t forget to check out additional blog posts at TeachHoops.com. Also, check out TeachHoops on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.