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HomeBasketball Plays"Hi-Lo" Plays for the 3-Out, 2-In Motion Offense

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Basketball Plays - "Hi-Lo" Plays for the 3-Out, 2-In Motion Offense

From the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook, @

We want our post players working together. Here are a few simple hi-lo post plays that you can run out of the 3-out, 2-in motion offense set. We start with some simple post-post screening motion. We finish with "High-2" and "High-3" which work great against teams that like to full-front the low post. Also see the "Big Series" hi-lo plays.

Simple Hi-Lo Post Motion

In diagram A, the ball-side post (O4) screens for the opposite post (O5). If the O5 goes low around the screen to the block, then the screener (O4) cuts up to the high post area (diagram B). The pass from the wing could go to either O4 or O5. If the pass goes to the high post (O4), O4 can either shoot or look down low to O5.

3-2 motion offense hi-lo play 3-2 motion offense hi-lo play 3-2 motion offense hi-lo play

In diagram C, this time the cutter (O5) goes to the high post, so the screener (O4) goes to the low block. Again, the pass from the wing can go to either post player. It is essential that the screener reads the situation correctly. The screener's cut is opposite of what the cutter does. If the cutter goes low, the screener goes high. If the cutter goes high, the screener goes low.


This is a very effective, simple "Hi-Lo" play using your two post players. See Diagram A below. To start the play, O5 sets a screen for O4, so that O4 can move out to the 3-point arc, along the opposite line of the lane. Meanwhile O1 dribbles to the right and O2 and O3 move down toward the corners (for spacing). You now have a 4-out, 1-in look (Diagram B).

3-2 motion offense hi-lo play, 41 3-2 motion offense hi-lo play, 41

O1 passes to O4. Oftentimes, the low defenders will switch the initial screen. O5 pins the X4 defender and posts up strong on the ball-side low post, looking for the pass from O4 and the chance to score. This is a very simple play, but very effective if you have a good low post player who can score one-on-one.

"High-2" and "High-3"

Here is another play that we can run out of our 3-out, 2-in set. This play works well if you have a good, tall post player, and when the defense is fronting the low post.

When the defense fronts our low post player as seen in Diagram A below, it naturally makes it difficult for us to pass from the wing to the low post. And a lob pass from the wing is not easy because usually there will be a helpside defender X5 in the paint. Instead of trying to force the pass from the wing, we will call "High" and have the opposite post O5 cut to the ball-side elbow for the pass from O2.

Basketball play - 32-High Basketball play - 32-High Basketball play - 32-High

Doing so takes the helpside defender X5 up to guard O5. Meanwhile, O4 seals the low post defender outside and O4 should have inside position for a lob pass from O5. This pass from O5 to O4 usually has to be a lob over the defender, and we want O4 to hold the inside target hand up high so we can make a good pass for the lay-up.

Notice also that after passing to O2, O1 screens-away for O3. This makes the pass to the high post easier by taking the X1 defender to the opposite side (sometimes X1 will drop into the high post area and deny that wing-to-high post pass). Also, this exchange between O1 and O3 helps keep the X3 and X1 defenders occupied and hopefully out of helpside in the paint. O1 goes to the weakside wing-corner area for a possible skip pass from O5, while O3 moves up to the top.

If the pass is skipped from the high post (O5) to the corner (O1) as seen in Diagram C, the low post player (O4) should continue to seal the low defender and then post-up on the ball-side low block for the possible pass from the corner.

We could run this play to either side. Run "High-2" to the right side (when the first pass goes to O2) and "High-3" to the left (starting with a pass to O3). In "High-3", everything is just the opposite. The first pass goes to O3 while O4 flashes to left elbow and we are looking to pass to O5 inside. O1 screens for O2 and moves to the right wing-corner area while O2 comes to the top.

Helpful DVDs:

Bob Knight: Advanced Tactics & Techniques for Man-to-Man Offense

Bob Knight: Advanced Tactics & Techniques for Man-to-Man Offense
with Bob Knight, former head coach at Texas Tech and Indiana University; Over 900 career wins, 3X National Championship Coach, Five Final 4 appearances; 4X National Coach of the Year; 1984 US Men's Olympic Coach (Gold Medal)
No one in the game teaches the motion offense better than coaching legend Bob Knight. Discover how his screening and cutting motions can benefit your offense. Coach Knight teaches every element of his man-to-man offense with on-court demonstrations including screens, cutter options, post screens, screening angle, balance and spacing. This 2-DVD set... (more info)

Price: $99.99
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Jim Calhoun: Set Plays for Your Offensive Attack

Jim Calhoun: Set Plays for Your Offensive Attack
with Jim Calhoun, Head Coach UConn, 1999 & 2004 NCAA Champions.

Coach Calhoun gives an inside look into one of the most potent offenses in college basketball today... Calhoun begins with his attacking secondary break offense and its options and entries. In The Attacking 3-Out-2-In Motion Offense, he provides eight set plays and entries into this attacking offense. He also demonstrates five unique inbounds plays from both under the basket and sideline positions. An added bonus in this unique videotape is Calhoun's detailed outline of his practice philosophy and program development... (more info)

Price: $39.99
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Excellent lessons on the motion offense.

3-Out 2-In High/Low Motion Offense
with Dave Loos, Austin Peay State University Head Coach

Coach Loos, four-time Ohio Valley Conference Coach of the Year, clearly and systematically teaches the 3-Out 2-In High/Low Motion Offense. Using on-court demonstration, Loos goes through a step-by-step process of initiating and setting up the high/low offense and building into it over 10 play options from the wing, post and dribble entry. Learn both a pattern for the high/low and specific plays such as "America's Play"... (more info)

Price: $39.99
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Bill Self: The High/Low Motion Offense

Bill Self: The High/Low Motion Offense
with Bill Self, University of Kansas Head Coach; 2008 NCAA Champions; former Head Coach University of Illinois.

This is a 3-out/2-in motion offense which is simplified with some basic rules for continuity. Because the offense is designed to pull one of your post players to the high post, it allows you to isolate your best big man at the low post with lots of room to score. The High/Low also places your perimeter players in position to score off the catch or dribble with the look of a true motion offense. Self uses on court demonstration to teach each player's responsibilities within the offense... (more info)

Price: $39.99
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Six Effective Entries into the High/Low Motion Offense

Bill Self: Six Effective Entries into the High/Low Motion Offense
with Bill Self, University of Kansas Head Coach; 2008 NCAA Champions.

Coach Bill Self complements his popular High/Low Motion tape with this tape on entries. Self details and demonstrates six entries, each consisting of multiple options and counters for all five players on the floor. Options include post-ups, 3-point shots, backdoors, and lobs out of a 1-4 and 1-2-2 alignment. This high quality videotape, shot at one of the largest demonstration coaching clinics in the country, is an excellent complement to his High/Low Motion Offense video... (more info)

Price: $39.99
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