View Full Version : A question for those who know basketball.

11-27-2007, 07:20 PM
This has mystified me for years, and it not just GU BB players. Why do guys drift away from the hoop when they shoot from 18 feet or more? Doesn't every team need 5 rebounders, (unless one of the opposing players has cut for the basket before seeing what happened to the shot). How many times have you seen a 3pt attempt and the ball hits the back rim and comes right back toward the shooter 10-12 feet? And where is the shooter? Down by half court. Why don't coaches teach their guys to practice their long shots so that they are coming in after them, not just for a rebound, but often the rebound gets bounced around and pops out. I know it is satisfying emotionally to 'back off' because we want it to go in so bad. It just seems illogical to me. Like sluggers in baseball who hit the ball and stand there watching, and once in awhile it is in the park - so why didn't they watch it while running full tilt? Why can't shooters follow their shots in?

Probably there is an obvious answer to this.

11-27-2007, 07:28 PM
To stop any fastbreaks.

11-27-2007, 07:36 PM
OK, that makes sense sometimes.
But watch how often this heppens when the shots are from the corners.
Watch also how often this happens when a team-mate is already covering the fast break, and nobody from the opposing team is running.
But really, are you saying the coaches teach that it is always the shooter of 3's that is responsible for the fast break?
I mean maybe you are right.
I am trying to understand this.

11-27-2007, 07:41 PM
Any more it is very rare that any team will send all five to the boards on offense. Teams vary in how committed they are to hitting the glass and how many they will commit. I would imagine that Michigan State sends 4 and sometimes 5 as this is an important part of their whole mentality. WSU, on the other hand, has many possessions where they don't even look like they are sending anyone because they are so committed to getting back and stopping any easy hoops from happening. Results show that both philosophies can work.

I would also say that the phenomena you are talking about is at times a result of lack of focus by the offensive player. Shooters sometimes like to fade off and admire their shot as it travels a long distance to the hoop when they ought to be following it. Most often, the offensive player with the best opportunity to rebound the ball is the shooter, as he knows where it is going and his defender likely has his momentum going away from the hoop contesting the shot.

11-27-2007, 08:13 PM
Most shooters are incredibly confident in themselves and feel they'll make every shot. So they head back down the court.
The point about stopping the fast break is very valid.
When shooting deeper shots it is also typical to see a players body fall backwards due to the motion of shooting. It sounds strange, but when shooting in one direction, rules of momentum say there is a force on the body in the opposite direction. This force may be small, but coming from a stationary shooter and acting on a player in the air it forces the body to start away from the hoop.

FWIW, I was always taught to follow my shot up until high school when teams became more efficient in running a fast break and better at boxing out to the point where offensive rebounds were very rare.

11-27-2007, 09:22 PM
Adam Morrison, particularly in his earlier years, shot the ball with an expectation to get the rebound in lieu of a miss. Many made baskets came from his second attempt following the rebound of his own shot.

Coaches used to teach all guards to get back on D when others took shots - shorter players equals lower rebound opportunities and quicker players can defend against fast breaks much easier, allowing the "bigs" to get back. Today's game includes much taller guards and forwards….all capable of high rebound percentages. Coaches today, whether sending 4 or 5 usually designate the two players closest to half-court as the 1st line of defense against the break.

The philosophy of strong rebounding teams(big and tall) is to eliminate fast breaks by dominating the boards - sending all five makes sense. If a defense rebounds amidst a 5 man rush to the boards by the offense, the defense is still in a good position to defend against the first outlet pass and slow the break or get a steal - an instant full court press.

GU has a mix, but is a fairly consistently a taller team than the opponent. I personally like to see the days of 2 or 3 chances per offensive set - ala Calvary and Batista. However, I don't think the shooter is as positioned from 3 point range as is the shooter from 10 feet and closer. Morrison proved that determination will get you to the rebound and put-back more often than not. That needs to be the rule and NOT the exception, if they're going to win the tough games this year. Following the shot is sort of that mentality.

11-27-2007, 09:53 PM
Applezag's answer pretty much explains it. But this is my experience:

1) Some coaches prefer to stop easy transition hoops at the expense of offensive rebounds. That means having players practice NOT following their shot. As AZ pointed out, WSU sometimes has nobody crash the boards and gets all 5 players back. Most coaches are somewhere between the two extremes either assigning the guards or two closest players to half court to get back on defense. Teams with perimeter oriented offenses often times assign the shooter + the point guard the responsibility of getting back to stop easy hoops (thus always having 1 guy back but sometimes 2).

2) Offensive players don't follow shots they should because of a lack of focus. I'd also point out that in an attempt to improve shooting in a very competitive sport a lot of young players take thousands (or hundreds of thousands) of shots with someone rebounding for them. The only way to get as many shot reps up as a player may like is to NOT follow your shot in practice. Of course that develops a bad habit of watching your shot or stepping back to where you'll take the next practice rep rather than going and rebounding (or getting back on defense). It may be annoying, but most of us are appreciative of, for example, the thousands of shots Raivio took in practice even if he didn't follow each of his practice shots.

3) Tired players/good defensive rebounding -- sometimes the player knows he should follow the shot but each time he has tried the defender has blocked him out. As the game goes on he stops moving after a shot because of good defense. Conversely, teams gain confidence when a team has poor defensive rebounding and gives up the offensive rebounds. So in some of these instances some credit should be given to the defensive players who have already conditioned his opponent to not bother trying to follow his shot.

I think the most overlooked factor is that we are teaching our kids not to follow their shots more because we focus so much on getting shot reps in practice.

11-27-2007, 09:59 PM
what is FWIW?
what is imo?

11-27-2007, 10:09 PM
what is FWIW?
what is imo?

FWIW- For what its worth
IMO = In my opinion.

By the way, IUO (In Uber's Opinion), the first answer is by and away most often the correct answer to your question. The cost/benefit of following your own three point shot from the wing/top of the key is far outweighed by the importance of getting back on the break. The way the game is played today, almost all coaches teach (or demand) their guards to get back on D even if it means a missed opportunity on an offensive board.

11-28-2007, 05:24 AM
Depending on the type of transition D the team is employing, there is very often a "defensive balance" player that is supposed to defend the fast break. If the shooter is near the top of the key, it's often him. If the shooter is in the corner, then another guard (or player at the top of the key in a flex-type offense) assumes the role, but a quicker player is always preferred.

Now I did not play Div. 1 basketball. I played the much slower game of AA High School hoops in the state of Washington, so my terms and my game knowlege might be completely out of 1985. We didn't have the three point line back then and if I (as a 4/5 type player) had tried to shoot from that far out or spent any time above the key my coach would have yanked me quick.

Having said that, I think much of this holds true today.

Butler Guy
11-28-2007, 05:39 AM
is that everyone does that and because we learn the game of basketball by watching it just kind of becomes a habit. Sure, in theory, the shooter should attempt to get box-out position on his defender after shooting, just like EVERYONE should use the backboard from free throw line extended into the dots or start dribble drives from the "triple-threat" position.

These things rarely happen, when they do people get all excited about how "fundamentally sound" a player is when in reality 5th graders around the country are learning these things in drills.

11-28-2007, 06:31 AM
is that everyone does that and because we learn the game of basketball by watching it just kind of becomes a habit. Sure, in theory, the shooter should attempt to get box-out position on his defender after shooting, just like EVERYONE should use the backboard from free throw line extended into the dots or start dribble drives from the "triple-threat" position.

Agreed. Most people that have a decent basketball IQ have been coached to follow their shots from early on. Although I understand the idea that preventing fast breaks is also important defensively. A smart basketball player usually will be able to judge--more or less--where his shot is likely to come off the boards, whether its long, short, or wide right/left. These players have a great basketball IQ and thus know whether its prudent to attempt to rebound their shot or try to stop any attempt on a fast break.