Many coaches work on some form of a 4 on 4 shell defensive drill everyday. Gain insight on drills for building your man-to-man defense from ESPN Analyst and former highly successful college basketball coach, Fran Fraschilla. The 4 on 4 No Paint Drill is a variation of the shell drill that reinforces the first two points of Coach Fraschilla’s 4 points of emphasis on defense.
4 on 4 No Paint
Overview: The drill is set up with 4 offensive players on the perimeter and their 4 defenders underneath the basket. The coach has the ball and will pass to one of the offensive players. The coach may choose to throw a direct pass or a lob pass.
Player Movements: The offense drives the ball toward the lane and the defense’s job is to keep them out of the lane.
Drill Essentials: The offense needs to focus on the phrase – “Get a piece of the paint!” while the defense needs ensure the offense gets – NO PAINT!
Drill Tips: On the initial close-out, the defenders should get to the proper ball side and help side position in relation to their man. The player on the ball needs to put good pressure on the ball.
Take your practices to another level with these competitive team drills that focus on man-t0-man defensive concepts. Watch your defensive play improve as your squad responds to these demanding but exciting drills. Northern Iowa head men’s basketball coach Ben Jacobson walks you through each drill before letting his players go full speed for multiple reps.
Paint Touch Drill
We start off with this engaging 3-on-3 drill in a half court setting. The goal for defenders: Don’t get beat baseline and keep the ball out of the paint. Look to level it off coming to the middle. Meanwhile, offensive players are working to put the ball in the paint with the dribble. Their goal is to touch the paint as many times as they can OR beat the defense baseline. Your coach should keep track of paint or baseline touches.
Notice that Coach Jacobson places a big emphasis on the angle of approach defensively. Click here to watch Jacobson explain more about this effective individual technique.
Coaching Point: Get your team to rally around charges and loose ball recoveries every time it happens in practice.
How to Turn the Paint Touch Drill into a Competitive Drill:
Give the players 15 seconds per simulation. If the ball gets to the baseline or touches the paint, you count up the points earned. The number of times that happens in the 15 seconds would equate to the number of lines players would have to run.
Seven Point Drill
In this 5-on-5 drill, the defense gets two points for a loose ball recovery or a charge taken and one point for a stop. Meanwhile, the offense gets two points for an offensive rebound, points for any score, and one point if fouled.
The offense has a distinct advantage in this one. The first team to get to 7 points is the winner. If the defense doesn’t get the charges or recoveries, they must get 7 stops before the offense gets about two or three baskets.
This drill really works on that mentality that a team will hang its hat on defense. What’s it going to take to get to 7 points before the offense does?
In the latest edition of All Access, we head south to sunny Florida for a practice session with Montverde Academy head coach Kevin Boyle. Follow along as the former Naismith National Coach of the Year leads his squad through a variety of breakdown drills focused on man-to-man defense.
Zigzags & Catch up
Last month, we watched UConn women’s head coach Geno Auriemma take his team through a similar zigzag drill. This time, Coach Boyle puts a little wrinkle on the drill as players go with no basketball.
In this example, players must work on getting their head on the ball so they can turn the ball handler. It’s imperative that defenders get in front of the offensive player. It’s really the key to slowing down a team’s fast break.
So why no ball? Well, according to Coach Boyle, you find out that at this level, most players don’t handle the ball well enough yet to make this drill valuable for the defense.
Next, with “Catch Up”, the drill plays out similar to before, except this time defenders must run to a spot about three feet ahead and then beat the offensive guy to that spot.
Getting Under or Over the Screen
Next, get two players on each side of the full court to act as screeners. Defenders must be away of the screen coming their way and get either under or over it. Be sure to make this game speed. Don’t just go through the motions. As for the offensive player, really try to run the defender into the screen. This is good practice for realistic situations in games.
Tracing a Dead Ball
Finally, get two lines set up. Players will go 1-on-1. The offensive player will dribble and then get stuck somewhere on the court. The defender must play up their face and tough defense. The offensive player works on being strong with the ball.
Next, make the drill 2-on-2 and have the new defender deny a second offensive player. The dribbler will run into trouble on the fast break while his teammate works to get open. The deny defender will do everything he can to prevent the pass from happening. Offensive players should look to go backdoor in these situations.
The previous clips can be seen on Championship Productions’ DVD ”All Access Basketball Practice with Kevin Boyle.” To browse more videos in our extensive All Access lineup, simply head over to our basketball library.
Take advantage of man-to-man mismatches on the offensive end of the floor with these proven set plays. Read through the breakdown of each play before seeing them carried out live on the basketball court in a 5-on-5 situation.
Quick Hitting Lob Play
Submitted by Les Wilson, Washington HS, Washington, IN
The set up: Player 1 has the ball up top. Players 2 and 5 are at opposite elbows, while players 4 and 3 are at opposite low blocks.
The action: From a 1-2-2 set, 2 and 3 break to the free throw line extended on their respective sides. Player 1 then passes to 3 and cuts to the ballside corner behind the three-point line.
The finish: From here, player 4 breaks wide to the weakside corner while 5 pops to the top. 3 passes to 5 who quickly reverses the ball to 2. As the pass is in the air and going towards player 2, player 3 quickly cuts up and sets a backscreen for 5. 5 curls around the screen and breaks hard toward the basket. Player 2 throws to 5 for a lob opportunity.
Set Play for a Mismatch
Submitted by Tom Reiter, Washington & Jefferson College, Washington, PA
This play incorporates spacing and takes advantage of a mismatch situation so an offense can make a quick-hitting offensive advantage.
The set up: Get in a 3-out, 2-low alignment, with 1 at the top of the key, 2 on the left side above the arc, and 3 on the right side above the arc, plus 4 on the baseline and 5 on the baseline (for spacing and isolation purposes).
The action: 1 dribbles up to the top of the key, passes to 2, and then runs to the ballside corner. 4 comes up to set a screen on the ball. As 2 dribbles off the screen, 1 cuts across the lane to screen for 5. 2 passes to 5 for a layup.
Options: If the post-up is not there, 4 should screen for 1 for a jump shot. 3 spots up on weakside for a possible skip pass from 2.
Looking for ways to increase intensity and toughness on the defensive side of the ball? In this week’s team concepts feature, Northern Iowa head basketball coach Ben Jacobson reveals three energetic man-to-man defensive drills that will provide a solid foundation for your practices.
Overview: This first drill works on technique and building the mindset that “We will guard the basketball.” It’s a great drill to do during the first few months of practices.
How it Works: Start in the far baseline corner. When players get to the elbow, they should make a jump stop. After this, make a reverse pivot, make three defensive slides, turn, and sprint to half court. Make a jump stop at half court. Then make a defensive slide all the way across half court. Next, repeat but on the other side of the court. Finish by sliding across the baseline to your original starting point.
Keys to the Drill:
-Shoulders and head must stay level. Widen your hands out.
-On jump stops, make sure your feet are wider than your shoulders.
-Players should say, “Push push push” while making a slide. Talk the entire time.
This is one of Coach Jacobson’s favorite drills. An offensive player starts at half court and must get the ball to the end line. They are NOT trying to score. The offensive player must stay inside the free throw line extended area on both sides. He/she only has this alley to get the ball to the endline. Defensively, it’s all about working on technique and avoiding fouls. There will be some contact, but it’s essential to do this drill without fouling.
Tips: Start with the dribble alive. Turn the defender as many times as you can. Any time the ball goes outside the lane lines, you must move back three feet and start again. Keep your feet on the ground with hands wide. Rotate through three offensive guys and then switch defenders.
For this final drill, it’s a similar set-up to the last drill except now we are starting from the wing area and the offensive player is looking to score.
Defensively, don’t get beat baseline. Look to level the dribble off going toward the top of the key. Trace the basketball with one hand. It’s the job of the defender to stop the offense with a loose ball recovery, charge, or defensive rebound. The offensive player only has three dribbles. Look to go through three offensive players before switching out. Defenders, get those hands up and chest out on every shot.