Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options

This article was originally featured on Coach Kosel’s website:

Here are 7 baseline out-of-bounds options out of a 1-4 low formation from Coach Bill Self. In the 1-4 low, Coach Self likes to put his long post man at the 5 spot to catch the inbounds pass. Usually the point guard passes the ball in. The 4 man is in the ball-side corner and the 3 man is in the opposite corner. Players like Jeff Withey and Joel Embiid were very effective at the five spot as they were able to hold the defender off and catch the lob pass with a long reach.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 1


5 catches the lob pass from 1. As 2 is popping up to the elbow, 5 drives past his defender for the score.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 2


5 catches the lob pass and passes to 2. 2 looks for a shot or to attack the basket.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 3


If 2’s defender is over-playing the cut to the elbow, 2 makes a back cut as 5 makes the pass for a lay-up.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 4

option4 option4a

In this option, 5 catches the ball at the elbow as 2 makes the back cut. If 2 isn’t open, 1 loops around 5 as 5 gives the ball to 1 on a dribble hand-off. 1 looks for a shot or can pass to 3 in the corner or to 2 cutting off of a double screen from 4 and 5.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 5

option5 option5a

In option 5, 5 passes to 2 as 1 steps inbounds and sets a flex screen for 4. 1 then sets a back-screen for 5 who cuts to the basket for the lob pass.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 6

option6 option6a

Instead of making the back-cut off of the screen from 1, 5 sets a down screen for 1 who cuts to the elbow for a shot.

Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options – Option 7


In the last option, 1 steps inbounds and cuts to the wing off of a double screen from 4 and 5. 2 passes to 1 for the shot.

Click here to download the PDF! Bill Self 1-4 Low BLOB Options

Kansas vs. Villanova: Preview with a Review

With chalk holding true in the South Region, the #1 overall seed Kansas Jayhawks face a very tough #2 seed in Villanova Wildcats in tomorrow’s Elite 8 contest.

In order to break down this matchup, I went to the archives for the last time they played each other which was November 29, 2013 in the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament, a game which unranked Villanova beat the #2 raked Jayhawks, 63-59.

It is worth noting that Kansas boasts six returning players from that 2013-14 roster (Perry Ellis, Wayne Selden Jr., Frank Mason III, Brannen Greene, Jamari Traylor and Landen Lucas), four of whom start. Villanova on the other hand has three returning players: Daniel Ochefu, Ryan Arcidiacono and Josh Hart.

My focus will be on the first half, which is where the game was won for Villanova (See Villanova-Kansas 11/29/13 Box Score).

Kansas had a great start to the game, scoring their first bucket off a BLOB Box Flex set. However, although Kansas had an early 11-2 lead with under 15 minutes to go in the first half, they never really found an offensive rhythm. This was largely due to the fact that they were in foul trouble from the opening tip. In fact, Villanova was in the bonus at the 13:25 mark of the 1st half. Although ‘Nova and Kansas both made 9 free throws (VU: 9-16 FT, KU: 9-11 FT) the foul trouble to really put KU on its heels and disrupted their offensive rhythm throughout the half.

Kansas was attempting to go inside, early and often to graduate transfer Tariq Black, Ellis, Traylor and freshman sensation Joel Embiid, but their foul trouble hindered this as the half went on (Here is a Pick and Roll Throwback Punch that was effective in getting a paint touch).

Defensively, Villanova successfully employed a 1-2-2 3/4 court press and also applied some token man-t0-man pressure to slow the game down, which the fouls accomplished as well. The pressure definitely bothered KU as freshmen Andrew Wiggins and Wayne Selden Jr. who had four of the team’s 11 1st half turnovers. These turnovers resulted in 14 points for the Wildcats.

Once Villanova tied the game up, they began to execute their 4-out 1-in Motion Offense:

Kansas’ 12 team fouls also allowed Villanova to execute their BLOB calls as well:

In addition, freshman phenom Andrew Wiggins was “out physicaled” during the half and was largely ineffective.

Villanova’s physical presence and their ability to get to almost every 50/50 ball put frustrated the pro Kansas crowd. In fact, Coach Bill Self even got a technical foul because of his disapproval with the officiating crew’s calls.

Of course, this was in November of 2013 and both teams are vastly different. Nevertheless, both teams can learn from this experience.

Villanova is shooting off the charts in their first three NCAA Tournament games, at a whopping 59.9%. Shooting will be crucial for Villanova to win, but the Wildcats must set the tone in other ways in order to beat Kansas.

Villanova Shot Chart Percentages(Percentages courtesy of Synergy Sports Tech)

Villanova Keys:

  1. Apply full court pressure as they did against Kansas in 2013 and against Miami (FL) last night – Let them know they will be there for the entire 40 minutes with pressure.
  2. Win 50/50 balls to gain extra possessions – Be tenacious!
  3. Get the Kansas bigs in foul trouble (as they did in the 1st half in 2013) and make the Kansas guards out shoot ‘Nova from the perimeter – Our guards are better than theirs!

Kansas Keys:

    1. Ellis and Lucas must stay on the floor and set the tone in the paint – Play inside out – Ellis has to be matchup nightmare from perimeter as well.
    2. Cannot let Villanova get to the line or make easy shots and allow them to press – Play in transition.
    3. Play for the entire 40 minutes – Can’t win with an offensive half of 22 points as in 2013.

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo

For more information on the Villanova v. Kansas Matchup, check out ESPN’s preview.


Communication is critical in basketball

How to teach communication through drills

When coaching a basketball player, you will often recognize that they will think about what skills they would like to acquire. Whether that means to be a great passer, shooter, slasher or all three, each person fails to miss one important aspect of basketball. While wanting to shoot like Steph Curry or pass like Steve Nash is admirable, there is one thing that many players miss. That one important thing is communication on the court. Communicating on the basketball court is something ALL good teams do on every possession. Whether on offense or on defense “communication is key” in basketball and that’s something any reasonable coach can see.

No offense can function without a guard communicating properly to his teammates but it goes so much deeper than that. Screens cannot be set, players who are open will not be found and even worse that means players will play “Hero Ball” and go in a crowd to shoot a low percentage shot. This also contributes to turnovers as passes can go awry if players are not on the same page. As a result, the offensive execution of a team depends on communication of some sort. As important as communication is on offense, it is perhaps even more important on defense.

Coaches, how many times did you look on with anger in your heart as you saw your own team get mercilessly destroyed by an opposing team’s player cutting to the rim? How many times did you want to throw the poor clipboard to the ground as your team’s rotation was not properly executed and a player was wide open for an easy layup or jump shot? Now how many times did you think in that instance “They gotta talk!!”? If your answer to all three questions was “a lot” then you do not need me to tell you what not communicating on defense can do. The result of a team not talking on defense is catastrophic.

“So how do I get them to communicate?” you now ask?

Unless you are coaching a team of telekinetics, you have to get them to talk while on the court to one another. Luckily there are some drills for that. Here are a couple that are paramount to having your team communicate.

Teach Communication in Offensive Drills

There are actually quite a bit of drills that a coach can use to get a team to talk. A coach can even modify simply drills like a “3 man weave” or a “2 on 1 fast break” drill into a communication drills by making players call ball. However, personally the best way to get a team prepared to communicating on the court is to have the team run through the offensive sets or plays but to have them talk about their jobs during the run through. This sounds silly for every experience basketball player and coach, however, if a team calls out what they do on a play during their run-through of the play in practice then more often than not they will execute on offense in a game better.

Teach Communication in Defensive Drills

There is one drill that I particularly like and that is the 3 on 4 contest drill. Here is a video of a version of that drill courtesy of Championship Productions:

This drill emphasizes the important of team defense rotating and talking while doing it.

Trust me, communication on the court will make your team better. Take a look at how important communication is to Team USA.[/fusion_text][/one_full]

Golden State Warriors Quick Hitters

Golden State Warriors Quick Hitters

The Golden State Warriors, according to Basketball Reference,  lead the NBA in 3 point field goals attempted and made. This should be of no surprise to any coach that follows the NBA because Steph Curry and Klay Thompson lead the NBA in 3 point field goals made this season at number 1 and 2 respectively. In addition, Curry has already broken his own NBA record for number of 3 point field goals made in a season as well as his record for consecutive number of games with at least one made 3 point field goal.

Ok. So what?

While the rest of the NBA is trying to play catch-up to the flow and style of the Golden State Warriors, Wes Kosel has put together five quick hitting actions from Steve Kerr. What makes these plays even more special is the fact that 3 out of the 5 plays feature players besides Curry and Thompson for isolations, post ups, and drives. The other two sets feature a popular action in all levels of the game, the elevator screen, and how the Warriors utilize this action to get their shooters open. Shooters that are accurate at a historical pace. These plays are for any level of coach, and, at a minimum, should be reviewed in case an opponent decides to use them against you.

Here are five quick hitters from the Golden State Warriors Head Coach Steve Kerr. Kerr has led the Warriors (with the help of Luke Walton) to a 55-6 record this season. The Warriors are undefeated at home, 32-4 in conference play, and 13-1 in division play.  They lead the NBA in 3-point field goal percentage (41.2%), assists (29.2/game), and points (115.1/game). Kerr has the Warriors moving the ball well and with so many offensive weapons on the floor they have proven themselves a hard team to beat.

5 Duck-In

Golden State Warriors: 5duckin

Horns Clear Post Cross

Golden State Warriors: horns2

Horns Post PNR

Golden State Warriors: postpnr

Pinch Post Hand-Off

Golden State Warriors: pinchpost

Warriors Elevator

Golden State Warriors: elevator

Click here to download the PDF! Steve Kerr Golden State Warriors Quick Hitters