January 1, 2018 • From the BenchWinning Hoops

Winning Hoops’ most popular Xs/Os features of 2017

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

Winning Hoops has helped educate basketball coaches throughout the world for more than 32 years. With another year in the books, we thought we’d take a look back at some of our most popular Xs/Os features over the past 12 months.

Here are the 12 articles that garnered the most interest from coaches.

1. Simple, man-to-man offense drives defenses crazy.

The 4-1 zone defense is an intriguing option for coaches.

A Mississippi high school boys basketball coach shared his favorite man offense, used when his regular motion offense isn’t producing results. It’s easy-to-learn for players, and produces results for coaches at any level of the game.

2. 4-1 zone defense bewilders opponents

You don’t often see teams deploy a 4-1 zone, but if you have the personnel it can be very effective. One coach shares how he has used this defense to confuse offenses and produce more wins for his program.

3. Four drills for teaching the motion offense.

Australian coach Mick Downer breaks down some of his favorite drills for teaching his teams the motion offense. They emphasize some of the offense’s most important skills, including spacing, timing and reading the defense.

4. 1-4 high zone offense forces baseline defenders into tough decisions.

This is a simple but effective zone offense run from a 1-4 high set. The main objective is to force the back-line zone defenders to make some tough decisions about their responsibilities.

5. Ridiculously simple press breaks live up to their name.

Michigan women’s basketball coach Kim Barnes Arico. | Photo via Twitter, @umichwbball.

An Illinois high school basketball coach breaks down some easy strategies that’ll help your team crack through those pesky pressure defenses.

6. Michigan conditioning with Kim Barnes Arico.

Our most-watched video of the year. Learn how the University of Michigan women’s basketball coach whips her players into shape with a series of sprints.

7. Teaching, implementing a swarming match-up zone defense.

A match-up defense can eliminate the opponent’s arsenal of set plays or cutters by switching all player movements. Not sure how to use it? Learn all about it here.

8. 12-player, four-ball drill is a great pregame warmup.

Who doesn’t need an excellent, versatile drill to get their players ready for tipoff? This gets players ready for almost anything, stressing dribbling, rebounding, passing, screening and footwork, among other skills.

9. ‘Triangle-and-Two’ defense keeps opponents at bay.

The “Triangle-and-Two” defense confuses opponents and can force them to change strategies mid-game. If you have the right personnel to use it, you might want to consider implementing this defense in your program. Learn all about how to do it.

10. Weave man-to-man offense a versatile threat.

The weave man-to-man offense seems to have been resurrected over the last several years, and teams can use it to flow into their normal offenses. Coaches showed a lot of interest last year in learning the weave man-to-man offense. Take a look at how it can help your program.

11. Hard-nosed ’22-8 Drill’ improves mental game.

The best drills emphasize offense and defense, while improving your team’s mental focus. The “22-8 Drill” does just that. Discover how one coach uses this drill on a regular basis to prepare his players.

12. ‘Fist’ offense beats up man defenses.

“Fist” provides a different look that’s effective against man defenses. This set confuses defenses by what it does not do. Learn one of the year’s most popular offenses and consider ways to use it in your program.

To keep up with all of our new plays, drills and strategies as we begin the new year, here are your best options: