Howland on the zone defense

Ben Howland, on what he wants out of a zone defense:
“Zone can be very effective. Jim Boeheim for example, recruits to the zone. They want long, athletic guys. His field goal percentage defense over 30 years is probably 40 or under. They scheme to shooters. I love that zone defense. That’s pressure, creating havoc with length and athletic guys. If I had my druthers, that’s what I’d want to play. We want to keep it compact and bottom line, make you beat us at the perimeter.”

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  • Anonymous

    We all know he does not like it though, He also does not like a fast paced offense where players can run the floor.

  • BruinInSeattle

    He doesn’t like the zone but I am extremely heartened that he has gone to it and even owned up to having made a coaching error by not having gone to it earlier in the season. Tells me he is open to whatever works, will make adjustments, and his own ego doesn’t get in the way of winning. As for the fast offenses…well…I think he would be more than happy with that if he had recruited that type of team. Still, I think he could open the playbook up a bit, set some plays for certain players but also allow a motion offense to open things up on the fly.

  • BruinInSeattle

    He doesn’t like the zone but I am extremely heartened that he has gone to it and even owned up to having made a coaching error by not having gone to it earlier in the season. Tells me he is open to whatever works, will make adjustments, and his own ego doesn’t get in the way of winning. As for the fast offenses…well…I think he would be more than happy with that if he had recruited that type of team. Still, I think he could open the playbook up a bit, set some plays for certain players but also allow a motion offense to open things up on the fly.

  • Anonymous

    Hey Anon @11:57

    Howland is about making each possession count. ‘Running the floor’ would go against that goal.

    Off of defensive rebounds [fastbreak] and very early on possessions, the team attempted their fair share of ill-advised shots, missed them, and the opponent grabbed the defensive rebound. That whole sequence is essentially a turnover.

    Do you want a team full of Kobes [attempting a ton of shots and shooting collectively around 45%]?

    Also, the team currently does not have the quality depth to support a starting five that runs really hard on EVERY offensive possession.

    If you look at our stats from the WSU game, we had 44 shot attempts to WSU’s 59. But we made nearly 60 percent of our shots and scored 74 points. If we made 80% of our FTs that game, we would’ve been close to scoring 90 points.

    If the team continues to perform consistently and hits 80% of their freethrow shoots, we’d probaby score 80-90 points night-in-night out.

  • Warren

    I’m glad to hear that Howland has finally gone to a zone. Not that I think it is a “better” defense, but in the past he didn’t even have his players PRACTICE against zone (as Alfred Aboya once said). I found that extremely disheartening, as we saw how tough it was for UCLA’s offense against a zone. I think that having his team learn both will prepare them both offensively and defensively for the next few years, and I hope that at the very least, he lets his practice players learn zone so they can challenge the regular players in practice, and prepare them for teams like ASU.

  • Anonymous

    I would like our chances with a team of Kobes

  • anon y mous

    Do you want a team full of Kobes [attempting a ton of shots and shooting collectively around 45%]?

    I’m glad you kept it anonymous…that was probably the dumbest comment i’ve seen on any blog!!!

    If you really think BH could avg 80-90 pts with this team when he couldn’t do it with a team full of future NBA players?

    If so I’ll send you a winning lottery ticket for $10k all you have to do is cash it and send me a $500.00 cashiers check to cover the taxes!!!