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PostPosted: 13 May 2019, 10:56 

Posts: 1
I have a son in a unique situation that I would like to get your advice on. He's going to be a sophomore and is currently going to the highschool open gyms put on by the Varsity Head Coach for all grades. He had a great freshman season. He led in scoring but his defense was a little slow. The Varsity, JV, and his Freshman coaches were really impressed with his abilities and his scoring. He broke the freshman school record for made three point shots in one season and had multiple twenty plus point games. Recently he was pulled from working out with the JV team and was put down to the Freshman/ Sophomore team. Most of his teammates from last year are playing up on the JV squad and it has really broken down his confidence. He asked the coaches about it and they only stated that he wasn't in good enough shape and that they needed him to be able to drive more and play solid defense. I'm not sure how coaches work and this might possibly be a good thing, but it definitely has taken his confidence to a low. What would be your advice on how he could handle this and do you have any recommendations to get him in to condition?



PostPosted: 15 May 2019, 05:43 
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Posts: 1279
Mark -

Sounds like he can shoot the ball, which is very important and valued skill. Skills are very important. However, in most cases, players will only keep progressing levels if they can defend at that level. For example, there are some amazingly skilled players that can handle and shoot like Steph Curry... however they never get a second of playing time at D1 college level because they can't defend at that level. Defense is important.

Maybe find a trainer or coach that can work with him on defense... so he's staying on balance and doing some of those defensively fundamentals correctly. Then play lots of full court 1v1... stay close enough to touch the player you're guarding. This is one of the best things you can do to get in shape and improve agility. Players have to slide, sprint, shuffle and use complex foot patterns.

Then just make it a priority to get better at defense... learn how to play off the ball, take charged, dive on the floor for loose balls, early help and quick recovery, move on the flight of the ball, anticipate, etc.

The best way to improve confidence it to put the work in.

Hope this helps.

Jeff Haefner

PostPosted: 17 May 2019, 17:13 

Posts: 900
I'm a big advocate of getting someone to work with your son 1 on 1 on those specific items. A lot of this will depend on your son. Easy to get bummed out, but he can use this to light a fire and use that motivation to improve. If he is willing, I'm sure there's a coach/trainer who would be willing to work with him.


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