Here is another guest blog post by our coaching friend, Bud Leonard.

The game is on.

You are working hard. The crowd is on their feet cheering. The basketball pops loose and is headed out of bounds. You sprint to the ball and leap to catch it. As you fly through the air with the ball in your hands you realize that you are headed out of bounds.

To save the possession you quickly call for a time-out.

The Referee blows his whistle and awards you the time out. All of your friends in the stands are standing and cheering for you.

You notice that your coaches are not cheering.

They are looking at you as if they would like to kill you!


Then you notice the score clock.

The clock shows you that the score is tied at 8 points each with 1:23 left in the first quarter. Your coaches would much rather give up one possession of the ball at this early part of the game and save the time out for later when it may be needed to rest the team, settle the team down during a period of confusion, or to set up a play near the end of the game.

You have watched numerous NCAA basketball games on TV and the coach has never been upset when a player calls a time out to save the possession arrow. Why is it not important to those coaches?

You must realize that televised NCAA games have TV timeouts run by the networks. These time outs are often two minutes long. They are called at regular intervals by the scorers table where a TV representative calls the time out according to a schedule agreed upon by the networks and the NCAA. That doesn’t happen in our league!

Time outs are precious.

Your coaches will tell you when you may call a time out.

This is one of the reasons your coaches instruct you to both listen for their voices and to look at the bench during each break in the game.

Now that you have read this, you too should value your time outs!

4 thoughts on “TIME OUT PLEASE!”

  1. Agreed. Unless it is late in the game and I have several timeouts left, I don’t want my girls calling a timeout to save a possession. I usually tell them as the game goes when they can call a timeout if they get in trouble. That being said, I don’t get too upset at them for calling a timeout if they get caught in trouble. For an 8th grade girl to make a heady call like that, I usually tell her good job for thinking on the court.

  2. Timeouts definitely play a factor near the end of close games (keep a few).
    Tendency for coaches to be overly emotional and excited in big games and waste a timeout to save an early possession.
    On the other hand: Don’t wait for a quarter break when your team definitely needs a timeout for any reason.
    I have seen teams lose their rhythm and momentum when a timely timeout could have help keep momentum in their favor.
    Use timeouts when you need them.
    Trying to save timeouts for the end of games may put you in such a situation that having several timeouts may not be able to fix.

  3. Pingback: Across the Wire (Sunday, November 24th) | 5 State Hoops

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