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PostPosted: 04 Nov 2014, 13:08 

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My boys B basketball team will be playing a game three days from the first day of practice. What defense should I teach them to be successful in that game? What offense should I teach them to be successful in the game?

The boys B team is the lower level at our junior high school.


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PostPosted: 04 Nov 2014, 18:52 
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If I were you I would be thinking about the future..... what goals do you want for them? Be ready to play at the next level? Or win now? Forget now, you want to help them to play at the next level.

M2m Defense and a simple pass and cut offense... maybe an open post one?


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PostPosted: 04 Nov 2014, 21:36 

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I agree, Ken. Man to man defense, 5-out pass and cut offense. It's about as much as you can get. They really pin you to the wall when they only give you 3 days prep time. Make sure that, even though you want the offense and defense to look good, don't sacrifice the individual development to install the offense.

In the end, at any level, whether you score or not will depend more on the individual skill and decision making than it will on the system you run.

Just my thoughts.

Brian Sass


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PostPosted: 05 Nov 2014, 04:49 
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I agree. With middle school kids the goal should definability be to develop the players and teach life lessons. Then eventually wins will come as a byproduct of this emphasis.

Definitely man to man defense as that is the basis for all other defenses.
http://www.breakthroughbasketball.com/defense/age.html

You definitely try to win and compete -- but developing the players is equally important. I was on C squad in middle school so you never know who will develop.

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PostPosted: 05 Nov 2014, 05:17 

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Thank you for all the advice. After the first game we have a good break before our next set of games, so I will be able to implement more.
@JeffHaefner I was also on a C team in middle school with a great coach. He played everybody and made sure everybody had fun and developed.


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PostPosted: 05 Nov 2014, 08:05 
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rarnold1 wrote:
Thank you for all the advice. After the first game we have a good break before our next set of games, so I will be able to implement more.
@JeffHaefner I was also on a C team in middle school with a great coach. He played everybody and made sure everybody had fun and developed.



I think you answered yout own question here. :-) Keep working on hte fundamentals and yes, let them have fun.

Make sure that everyone knows what your goals are.... too many people think about the almighty WIN instead of player development. Who cares if you win evey game and NOT ONE of those players make it to the next level. JMO

Good luck.


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PostPosted: 05 Nov 2014, 14:40 

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Great point by Coach Sar about communication. Important to let the parents and players know what your goals are regarding player development. My guess is most of the parents will welcome a coach who isn't just playing all their strongest players for the win each game.

I like Jeff's point about not knowing who will shine down the road, which is why I like the 5 out pass and cut offense for teams like yours. It keeps coaches from sticking their "big guy" on a block or sticking kids in positions. The 5 out pass/cut allows everyone an opportunity to pass, cut, dribble, set screens, etc. You can teach very important fundamentals in a 5 out pass/cut offense. Sprinting cuts, setting up cuts, setting proper screens, knowing when someone is open, crisp passing, proper court spacing, receiving screens just to name a few.

You can cover some sins with a zone defense, but I think it does more harm than good for the individual players. A good M2M defense with heavy emphasis on help-side defense is the way to go if you're goal is player development and fundamentals.

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