The 1-2-1-1 zone press pressures the in-bounds passer, and attempts to trap the first pass receiver. To trap the offensive player in the corner, or along the sideline, the first defender (X1) moves over quickly to stop the ball and seals off the sideline so the offensive player cannot dribble up the sideline. X4 and X1 (or X3) wait until the first pass receiver puts the ball on the floor and starts the dribble, and then quickly close in and trap.
Of course, this press is a gamble and makes you more susceptible to getting beat long for a lay-up. The other defenders who are not actively trapping, try to get into the gaps between the ball-handler and his teammates. Often I see high school players make the mistake of coming up away from the basket and challenging the ball, only to get beaten by an easy pass to another player under the basket for a lay-up.
The red zones are excellent trapping zones, since the offensive player cannot retreat across the 10 second line. The blue zones are good trapping zones because the offense has to worry about the 10-second count. This defense has been the cornerstone of one of the most successful coaches and programs in the country.
Coach Forrest Larson teaches the run and jump press with 10 drills that make the defense easy to teach. This is a two-disk set with four sections, including the Press Defense, Offense (Ball Handling), Offense (Shooting Skills + Fast Breaks), and Man-to-Man Defense. Coach Gonzalez teaches how to force turnovers, confuse and fatigue the defense, and how to create and capitalize on scoring opportunities using a relentless full-court man press. X4 and X5 double-team the inbounds pass in the corner if the ball is even with or below the block.
If the inbounds pass goes beyond the block, X5 pressures the ball forcing the speed-dribble, while X4 quickly sprints to get above the ball. If the ball is dribbled away from the sideline back toward the middle, X4 is in position to "hit" the ball-handler there. If the offense gets the ball into the opposite corner (or the inbounder runs the baseline), use all the same rules, just on the opposite side. If the ball gets ahead of you, sprint back and try to "back-tip" the ball loose from the dribbler. When trapping, or trying to stop the dribbler, you must move your feet to get into position. Once our players get the general idea and understand all the press rules, we will mostly go 5-on-5 as the season progresses.
Stay on your half of the floor as we run the drill on both sides of the floor and other players will be coming back the opposite side in the opposite direction. One of our press rules is to run at and double-team the ball anytime the ball is being speed-dribbled toward you.
For the purpose of running the drill, O2 will pause a moment with the ball while O1 and X2 move up the floor a little.
In this drill, the offense will get the long pass for lay-ups, but this shouldn't happen when we are 5-on-5 and have our safety back.
Depending on who our next opponent is, and what type of press offense they use, will determine which of these we are going to drill in practice that night.
Get the 5-on-5 match-up press drills and several other "special" matchup press drills by becoming a Premium Member or get the Deluxe CD or downloads. This article has been generously shared with the Coach's Clipboard by Coach Joao Costa (JC) who played professional basketball in Europe. Facing aggressive full court man-to-man defensive pressure can be a challenge for any team. During practice it is critical to create one-on-one situations for ballhandlers in order to prepare them for the game time pressure.


Note: If player 3 gets the pass from 4 he will take the ball down the court while player 2 takes the right lane and 1 the left lane. When player 2 screens 1's defender he then seals the defender at baseline and reaches for the ball towards the inbounder 5. Remember, players 1, 2 and 3 can take the ball down the court and initiate the half court offense. Note: If 4's defender tries to stop 1 from going to the basket, player 1 looks for 3 at free throw line for a shot.
Coach Hoiberg starts by showing his basic scheme, which he calls primary break, with spacing rules by position. By Roy Williams, University of North Carolina Head Coach, 2005 National Champions, 4X Time National "Coach of the Year," Winningest Active Coach in College Basketball. Many of Roy Williams' current beliefs were developed in his early days of coaching high school basketball in North Carolina.
More and more teams are using half-court, three-quarter court and full-court zone presses to disrupt their opponents' continuity and produce turnovers. 2000 NCAA Runner-up; One of only two people ever to serve as head coach, assistant coach, and player in a Final Four.
Coach Donovan shares concepts for winning transition basketball that are usable at any level of basketball!
O3 is the in-bounder and should get the ball out of the net quickly and try to get the ball in-bounds before the defense can get their press set. The pass back to O3 is another option, and O3 should always stay behind the ball as a safety pass backwards.
O5 goes long and will eventually end up at the right low block, just like in our secondary.
If the in-bounds pass goes to O1 on the opposite side (same side as O4), then O4 stays up the sideline and O2 flashes to the middle (just the opposite of the left-hand diagram above). The other defenders must play in the gaps between the passing lanes, and try to deny or intercept the pass. If the opponent is beating your press up the sidelines, then you can adjust your defense to a 1-2-2 zone press. Have a rule that if one offensive player goes long, then the mid-court weak-side defender (opposite the ball) will move back to prevent the long pass. Trapping zones are those areas where the offensive player definitely does not want to get caught losing the dribble. This only transforms a good situation into a bad one (now the player goes to the free throw line).
Coach Donovan walks you through his 2-2-1 full-court man press with stunting, and the 1-2-1-1 pressure defense.
The basis of the run and jump is traping the ball down the sideline and jump-switching in the middle.
Using markerboard presentation and extensive practice and game footage, Gonzalez details the match-up principles, alignments, and trap options for the White press (run out of a 1-2-1-1 set) and the Black press which emphasizes all out ball denial.
Coach Williams gives you an insider's look into one of the most potent and aggressive full-court defensive systems.
First we start with 1-on-1, then 2-on-2, then progress to 3-on-3, 4-on-4 and finally the 5-on-5 match-up press.
Still, if we see problems with our press, we will go back to these basic breakdown drills any time we need to.
Instead, X4 moves quickly above the ball (Diagram B) to (1) trap the dribble toward the middle (Diagram D) or (2) to become an interceptor of the pass to the middle.
This is the same drill as 3-on-3, except now our safety X3 will rotate over to intercept the sideline pass.
For teams to be consistently successful advancing the ball against man-to-man pressure, perimeter players (1, 2 and 3) must develop the ability to advance the ball to the frontcourt with the dribble against a one-on-one defender.


Remember that players 1, 2 and 3 are interchangeable and any of them can get the inbound pass and advance the ball up the court. He believes that transition can be the most important phase that a team can incorporate through proper spacing, crisp cuts and precise passing.
This basketball DVD will illustrate the "Tar Heel Running Game" with the use of players in an impressive on-court demonstration. With this in mind, Coach K takes the court at Cameron Indoor Stadium to share his effective press break drills and his revered coaching philosophy. The basis for his offensive philosophy is imbedded in fundamental skill and player mentality. Do not set up right under the basket, as the backboard may prevent you from making a long, overhead pass. In fact, if the point guard can beat the press, then we should flow right into our secondary break with O2 going up the right sideline, O4 out to the left elbow-three-point line area and O3 trailing up the middle.
If after 2 seconds, they see that we are having difficulty getting the in-bounds pass into O1, then O2 and O4 cut hard, all the way to the baseline if necessary, looking for the inbounds pass (see the right-hand diagram above).
Instead, the defenders should deny the offensive player from getting the pass off and get the 5-second call, or try to tip the pass, or force her to make a bad pass, which is intercepted by one of your teammates. In this on court demonstration DVD, Cliff Ellis teaches you his patented 1-2-1-1 Full Court Press. Using on-court demonstration and game film Donovan details each player's responsibilities, when and how to trap, and transitional coverage once the press has been broken. Gonzalez discusses how to use the White and Black presses to speed up the offense, get them off-balance, and force non-ball-handlers to bring the ball up the court.
Generally, we use these break-down drills more often early in the season when we are first teaching our match-up press system. We want our trappers knee-to-knee (so that the offense cannot split the trap), and we want our hands to be at the same height as the ball, without reaching-in. In this drill we have a rule that the inbounder must receive the pass even with, or just a little above the trap. Teams that rely only on their point guard to advance the ball will struggle against pressure. Donovan demonstrates the drills that helped turn his inexperienced team into a "teamwork machine." Practice drills are the Two-Man Sideline drill, Three-Man Sideline drill and Five Cycles drill.
With the press breaker, O2 and O4 at half court realize the press is in effect and run the press breaker as seen above. If the opponent chooses to shoot the outside jumper, give it to them, as it is a lower percentage shot than the lay-up, you avoid getting a foul, and you may get the rebound, or delay the offense long enough for your teammates to arrive on defense. The defense is taught with drill work for the different methods of defending and attacking the inbounds pass to the techniques, strategies, and rules used to defend the ball all the way down the floor. Our defenders now must sprint out of the double-team and try to catch or back-tip the dribbler.
But when we go 5-on-5, our weakside defender (X2) will sprint back as our safety to intercept that long pass (see the Match-Up Press Defense for details). Advantages of this style are that the running game negates the defense's ability to get set, which leads to many easy baskets. A popular peer pressure drill is the "Laker Fastbreak" drill, where the ball is not allowed to touch the floor. In a game situation, X2 will be an interceptor of the pass out of the trap to the middle, and X1 will intercept the pass up the sideline.



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