Two Useful Sideline Inbounds Plays that Yield Results

In this week’s Playbook Series, we break down two sideline inbounds plays that have paid major dividends for a pair of college basketball programs. For each play, be sure to first follow the overview before seeing them carried out live on the basketball floor.

Sideline Three-Point Play

Submitted by Tom Reiter, Washington & Jefferson College, Washington, PA

This is a special situation play that will enable you to get the ball to your best perimeter shooter or to an interior player for the score inside. It’s best to have the ball positioned within 10 feet of the top of the circle along the sideline. This gives way to the best angles for passing and screening.

The Set-Up: 3 starts out on the sideline with the ball. 1 starts at the near elbow. 5 is at the far elbow. 4 starts at the near low block and 2 is at the opposite low block.

The Action: 1 fakes toward the midcourt, reverse pivots quickly, cuts underneath 4 on the ball-side block, and then heads to the near corner. If 1 gets the pass, he/she can either shoot or make a post feed to 4. At the same time, 5 fakes toward the middle of the court to create space, as 2 moves up and makes a back screen on 5’s defender near the foul line.

The Finish: 5 spins and cuts hard to the basket. If 2’s defender switches, it creates a mismatch and allows for a potential lob pass. After the screen, 2 can step out to the top of the key and shoot a jumper. Depending on how the defense plays 3, they can be a dangerous threat to score. 3 can step inbounds and receive a quick pass from 2 for an open three-pointer on the wing.


Sideline Play with Four Options

Submitted by Will Rey, Loyola University, Chicago, IL

The Set-Up: 3 inbounds the ball. 1 starts out at the near elbow, 4 is at the far elbow, 5 is at the top of the key, and 2 sets up in the middle of the lane just below the circle.

The Action: 1 moves up and makes a back screen for 5, who makes a V-Cut and curls below 1 and to the near corner/wing. 1 then turns to receive the ball from 3 at the top of the key. After the ball is in 1’s hands, 4 down screens for 2. This should be your best inside/outside combo.

The Finish: 4 looks to post up after the screen for 2. 5 holds for a bit, and then screens up for 3 near the sideline. Timing is key on this play. 1 must scan his/her options from left to right.


The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD “Over 50 Sensational Sideline Inbounds Plays” produced by Winning Hoops. To check out more team plays, visit our extensive basketball library.


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