Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Starts to the 1-4 High Sets

Since I have been doing some Xs and Os stuff the last few days, I will continue that trend here. I have gotten a lot of interest and compliments about some of my 1-4 set stuff I have compiled over the years. I don't run a lot of it, but have shared it with coaches. I am not a set guy at all, but use them from time to time to give different looks and run into our motion game. I like the 1-4 high because of the spacing and room to move. But I believe that set plays should fit your players to a T and shouldn't be designed to do things they are not good at. For example if you are lucky enough to have 4 6'8"+ kids (like another blogger I know) but don't have any shooters (he does have them, lucky bum), then you probably shouldn't be having sets to free up your players for threes, no matter how well the plays work. At the same time, if you have a ton of small kids that can shoot, the plays shouldn't be set up so that you are getting post ups and high/low looks for your guys, again, no matter how good they look. I also think your sets should run into your base offense, it makes it harder to scout because where does the play stop and your offense start? Anyway, I will give some entries, looks, and ideas to think about when running a 1-4. So if you love sets and 1-4 stuff, take the information here and tweak it to fit your team.

Three for One
Personally, I like to run 3 different 1-4 high plays for my sets. But I run them on the same call. How do the players know what play to run? By how the ball is entered into the offense. I have three different entries I use and each one triggers a specific play. I feel it is harder to scout (unless you read the blog I guess), and makes things more streamlined for the players.

I contend there are three MAIN entries into the 1-4 and these are the three I use primarily: Wing pass entry, wing dribble entry, and post pass entry. Now, there are also some things you can do in terms of pass fake the wing and have the wing back cut, call for a screen and roll, and things of that nature, but I usually use these three.

When you start in the 1-4, I really like the offense starting as a 1-4 low and coming up to high. It makes ball entry easier, I feel, and really helps you exploit other teams on the back cuts when they over play.

I also do not mind starting the offense from a box set with your bigs at the corners and your perimeters on the blocks and having your bigs set a downscreen and pop up. That is a good way to free your guys. I just don't like having guys get into the 1-4 set because they start from stationary and are easier to guard. At the same time though, I see a lot of teams start like this and do fine, usually until someone really applies the pressure.

Dribble Over
When we run the dribble over, there are several things you can do out of it. I teach my guys to run the dribble over option when the wing is being denied, so obviously, I always have the wing run a back cut off the dribble over.

After the back cut is made, there are several moves you can make. You can have the player that back cut go all the way to the front of the rim than loop up and have your posts set a pinch screen for him to try and shoot a three. This is effective if your wing is a good shooter and you are looking to iso him.

Another option is to have your back cutting wing set a screen for the other wing (almost flexish), who cuts across the lane and to the corner for a shot. You can also drop your post as a second screener and have him post up for an entry (depending on your post play), which is not shown here. Another option is to screen the screener with your post setting a downscreen on the wing that set the screen (as shown below).

I also LOVE the back/cross screen where a person on the block screens a person on the opposite elbow. Here the back cutting guard sets a cross/back screen for the backside post. He then pops up to the perimter and we have a high/low look for the post coming off the screen. This works REALLY well when done right. Some other simple starter options for the dribble over are things like just having the guy clear out so the point can go 1 on 1, if you have a stud PG. You could have the back cutting wing clear out and the post drop down, post and then set a back/cross screen for the post on the opposite elbow. After setting the screen he shapes up and you have a high/low look. The wing could also take 1-2 steps down as if he is making the cut then come up hard and perform a Euro screen with the dribbler. The possibilities are really endless.

Wing Pass
When a pass is made from the point to the wing, there are several things you can do, some are more obvious than others. I only touch on the starts to the wing, but I feel the pass to the wing should be your most indepth play simply because it happens more often. Your dribble and post entries should be quicker and your wing entry should be more in depth. But I guess if you stress a dribble over or post entry, then that can be the more indepth set.

The most obvious thing to do when the pass is made to the wing is to run a UCLA screen off the high post. I like this because you are looking to get your point guard an initial easy shot and if you have an athleitic point, as many teams do, you can even get him a post up look. The high post setting the screen can either pop out (Swing style) or can roll as a second cutter if the point guard cuts and clears. A lot of it depends on the type of post you have and what you want the subsequent actions of the offense to be. If you have a post that can shoot then he should step, of if you put a shooter at that position for the purpose of stepping.
So after the UCLA cut is run, there are several things you can incorporate. Again I like the cross/back screen look, especially when the point guard faces up out of it and seperates to the ball for a jumper.

And again, you can run the screen the opposite wing action, shown here with the screen the screener look for a pop. if you have a dominant point, I like to incorporate this because you are getting two looks for your point guard.

Also, after setting the screen, I like the post to be a second cutter, cut to the block, post hard, and then set a back/cross screen for the post on the opposite elbow. After setting the screen, the screener should roll to the high post for a high low look.

Other things you can do out of it are things such as send the point guard to the opposite corner to clear out for a wing to go 1 on 1. You can have the player in the high post turn and screen for the post on the opposite elbow -the player being screened for runs a curl cut and the screener rolls back to the high post (can switch that as well).

Another option I like on the guard to wing pass is having the backside post set a backscreen for the point. If you have an athletic point who can put one down, this is a great look to get the team going!
Again, if you have a good point guard, or your point is your best player, this is a good look for him. Have the post on the ball side drop down and post up, then when the point gets to the block have the post that is on the block set a screen to free him up for a jumper in the corner.
If you have a good post player, clear the point out to the opposite corner and have the post drop down, post and then set a screen the screener look for the post that set the back screen. Also, when the post goes up to set the back screen, it opens the lane for a good slashing wing to drive the ball to the basket.
Another good idea with the back screen is to incorporate a screen and roll with it. Again, send the point to the opposite corner and clear out the paint for the screen and roll.

Wing pass and screen away is another obvious option. Very vanilla, but very effective. There are some different things you can do that I will share with you here.

Again, I am a fan of the back/cross screen and here you see the ballside post drops down, posts up, then sets the back/cross screen. He should roll across to the high post for a high/low type look.

You can also set a double using the post players. There are two obvious ways to do it. The easiest is to screen with the backside post and the point. You can also screen with the ballside post and the point and have the backside post dive to the lane. I would definately add some screen the screener action for both of these.

You can also, for fun, throw in something crazy like a triple screen away where you slip some screener, pop others, curl, straight or flair your cutter depending on the personnel.

Post Entry Pass
I like the post entry pass in the 1-4 high because you can do a lot of things with back cuts.
The most obvious thing you can do out of the post entry is have your wing cut back door for a layup. From there you can add things like a back/cross screen for the opposite post, or a screen for the wing and have the opposite post screen down flex style.

Another obvious idea is to dive the opposite post into the post for a high-low as shown below with the optional screen away. You could also have your PG basket cut to the opposite block for a layup.

Another classic look is having your backside post backscreen for your point guard (or you could ahve them screen for your wing or double screen with the point guard). This look frees your pg for a layup and can have a high, low off of that. From this look you can have the PG back screen a wing or cross screen a wing to the corner for a shot (if posted on the block) then seperate out for a shot.

The scissor action of this is a class look and can got a lot of places from here in terms of screening and moving. It's a great look if you have a post that passes well.

Again, there are tons of options from this point. Another good one, if your posts can handle, is having the post with the ball and the other post running a screen and roll. Good option with a talented post player.
Other Starting Looks
I've outlined some basic starters for the 1-4 high, and there are also some other things you can do out of it.
The horns set is a good start, having your two posts come up and set a screen and roll while your wings drop to the corner. The point attacks and you go from there.
Another way is a simple screen and roll. Have your post come up, screen and roll into something.
End Thoughts
First, this took me a long time to get done and I apologize for that!! As the season winds down I will start to post stuff more regularly on here. Anyway, again, the 1-4 high is a great set offense to run into your base and would encourage everyone to look into it. The point of this post was to give you a buffet style look into the different options with the offense and let you choose what works for you. Hopefully this gives you some options and things to think about. I don't believe that there are any fool proof set plays and you should tailor every set you have to your team and tailor it to flow into your offense. So anytime you see a great set play, use your brain and tweak it to better fit your team and you as a coach!


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Kane Mastin said...

Great read... what program do you use for your play diagramming?