I came home from practice today and the Duke game was over so I caught some clips from Mizzou and the Navy vs. SDSU game. The Navy game was great, it went down to the final few minutes. I was really amazed how Navy was able to stay in the game. I know they are 3-8 on the season now and last in the Patriot League no less, but with the talent they have to work with, I think it is really a testament to how they play the game. If you look at their games, they've never really been annihilated, they usually stay within 10-20 points of their opponent. On offense they are primarily a Princeton type, 5-out motion team, and on defense they are mostly an extended 2-3 zone with a lot of corner and sideline traps. I took several clips of their 5-out motion offense. Watch the video and read my thoughts below,

Give and Go:

Perhaps the simplest and still most effective play out of the 5-out motion offense is the give and go play. It works simply because for that brief second that the defender hesitates after the pass, it's a backdoor pass for a layup.

The key here is patience. You won't hit the give and go the very first time, every single time. You'll notice in the first sequence of the video, the point guard actually back pedals then sets it up. With the 5-out motion, you want to continuously run pass-cut-fill, pass-cut-fill, and after about 3 or 4 times, you will eventually get an open backdoor give and go. Trust me on this one. It just takes patience.

Drive and Kick Series:

In this sequence, Navy continuously drives into the paint, draws the defense, then kicks it back out. All the while, the players fill the spot vacated by the driver.

In this first diagram, O3 drives from the top of the key. Gets stuck, and skips it to a semi-wide open O4 in the weak-side corner. X4 does a good job of stopping the penetration along with the help from X5.

Finally, O1 fills in behind O4. X1 gets stuck getting sucked in by the penetration by O4 so O1 is open for the 3 pointer.


I'll admit, with the 5-out motion, there is a tendency to settle for the 3-pointer. If you have a great shooting team, then it shouldn't be a problem. Otherwise, you could hit those dry spells where nothing is going down. However, as long as your team is patient, and continues to move the ball either by pass-cut-fill, or penetrate-kick, you should be able to find a good shot. In those HS leagues where you have no shot clock, that is where you get those 20-18 final scores.

But it does work. Just take a look at Navy's scores so far this season, not bad considering they probably don't have a single recruit that was offered a scholarship to anywhere other than Navy,

Fri, Nov 9 at Longwood W 88-72
Sun, Nov 11 at Drexel L 70-86
Wed, Nov 14 Robert Morris L 77-93
Sat, Nov 17 at UTSA L 67-77
Tue, Nov 20 Canisius W 71-60
Fri, Nov 23 Seton Hall L 75-79
Sat, Nov 24 at Pennsylvania L 67-71
Tue, Nov 27 at Howard L 65-75
Thu, Nov 29 Towson W 73-59
Mon, Dec 3 Mount St. Mary's L 58-62
Mon, Dec 17 at San Diego St. L 76-86

The Seton Hall and SDSU games look good. Drexel didn't quite work out, but it was their second game of the year on the road against a good team.

If you are looking for video info on a Princeton-based offense similar to this one that Navy uses, check out Joe Scott's DVD on the Fundamental building Blocks of the Princeton Offense. Coach Scott is the current head coach at Denver and used to be the head coach at Air Force and Princeton, both 5-out teams. Be sure to check out the X's and O's Basketball forum to discuss your favorite coaching topics.