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Basketball Offense - Kansas Zone Plays

By Dr. James Gels, from the Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook, @ http://www.coachesclipboard.net

The 2-3 zone defense is the most commonly used zone defense, designed to stop the inside game. Good outside shooting can rip this zone apart. But you still need to get the ball inside, especially late in the game, or when your shooters are not hitting. Presented here are clinic notes from Bill Self, Kansas head coach, discussing several plays designed for attacking the zone. Also see "Kansas Zone Offense".

Coach Self has been head men's coach at the University of Kansas since 2003, after coaching at Oral Roberts, Tulsa, and Illinois. In his seven seasons with the Jayhawks, he has complied a record of 202-43, and 409-148 lifetime. His 2008 Kansas team won the NCAA National Championship and he was named coach of the year. Coach Self was named National Coach of the Year by The Sporting News in 2000 and 2009, Associated Press in 2009, CBS/Chevrolet in 2009, ESPN.com in 2009, and USBWA Henry Iba Award winner in 2009. He was named the Big 12 Coach of the Year in 2006 and 2009.

Coach Bill Self
Coach Bill Self

Coach Self usually starts his 2-3 zone offense and plays with a 3-out, 2-in set with both post players low.

Play #1

Here we actually start with O5 at the high post. In the diagram A below, O1 passes to O3 and cuts around O5 and through to the opposite corner. O5 steps out and gets the pass from O3 (diagram B). O5 passes to O2, and O2 passes to O1 in the corner. O5 cuts to the ballside elbow and could get the pass here from O1. If so, O5 looks to pass inside to O4 who seals off the low defender.

Kansas zone playKansas zone playKansas zone play

Optionally, O1 could pass to O4 on the block. When this happens, O5 dives across the lane to the weakside block, looking for a pass from O4 and the inside shot (diagram C).

Play #2

O1 dribbles toward the right wing and O2 slides down to the corner and receives the pass there from O1 (diagram A). The outside low zone defender will come out to defend O2. Next O2 skip-passes to O3 on the opposite wing (diagram B), and O4 cuts to the ballside elbow and occupies the middle zone defender. The skip-pass to O3 should get the left outside low defender to "lift" (come out to defend O3).

Kansas zone playKansas zone playKansas zone play

O5 screens the remaining low zone defender who was guarding O2, and O2 cuts around the screen for the pass inside from O3. This could be a weakside lob pass and dunk for big college teams, or a pass to O2 cutting to the ballside block for smaller teams.

Play #3

O1 passes to O2 (diagram A below), and O5 flashes to the ballside elbow, and occupies the middle zone defender. O3 drops inside, getting ready to set his/her screen. O2 passes back to O1, as O3 screens the low defender for O4. O4 cuts to the left side for the quick pass from O1. It's important to notice that O1 aligns on left lane line-extended to have a good passing angle.

Kansas zone playKansas zone play

Play #4

O1 passes to O3 and cuts through to the ballside corner (diagram A below). O3 passes to O1 in the corner, and this will get the outside low zone defender to come out and guard O1. Meanwhile, O5 screens the middle low defender and O4 cuts to the ballside for the pass from O1 and the lay-up. Optionally, O1 could skip-pass to O2 who is also often wide-open for the 3-point shot.

Kansas zone playKansas zone play

Get more Kansas Zone Plays in the Premium Members section and the Deluxe CD and downloads. It also includes Play #5, Play #6 (Self calls this the "best zone play ever"), and Play #7.


Related pages:


Helpful DVD's


Coach Self teaches how to attack zone defenses

Bill Self: "Basic" and "Motion" 3-Out 2-In Zone Offenses
with Bill Self, University of Kansas Head Coach.

Price: $39.99
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Bob Knight: Encyclopedia of Zone Offense

Bob Knight: Encyclopedia of Zone Offense
with Bob Knight, former head coach at Texas Tech and Indiana University; 4X National Coach of the Year.

Price: $119.99
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Coach Boeheim teaches zone offense

Jim Boeheim's Complete Guide to Zone Offense
with Jim Boeheim, Head Coach, Syracuse University.

Price: $39.99
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Coach K teaches how to attack zone defenses

Mike Krzyzewski: Duke Basketball Attacking the Zone
with Mike Krzyzewski "Coach K", Duke University Head Men's Basketball Coach

Price: $44.99
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Geno Auriemma: The Simplified Zone Offense

Geno Auriemma: The Simplified Zone Offense
Head Women's Coach UConn, 11 times NCAA Women's Basketball National Championships; 8 times National "Coach of the Year"

Price: $39.99
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Copyright © 2001 - 2017, James A. Gels, all rights reserved.


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