I'm a big fan of the 1-4 high or 2-3 high offenses. Like the Princeton offense, it has some great backdoor and misdirection possibilities that are mostly underestimated by alot of people. In my opinion, it's a talent equalizer kind of an offense, especially if you don't have a dominant post and a bunch of skilled (ie. can shoot and make smart plays) but athletically less gifted players.

One coach that uses a lot of 1-4 high or the triple post (ie. triangle) offenses is Geno Auriemma, head coach of the women's team at UConn. I went through some notes that a coach wonderfully put together (I'd love to give them credit specifically but I don't know who made these notes) and took down some of the breakdown drills Coach Auriemma uses to teach the offense. Here they are,

Drill 1:

1 passes to 7 and immediately cuts around 7 looking for a handoff. 2 cut off of 7 next also looking for a handoff. 7 makes the handoff and goes to the basket.
The drill continues as 3,4 and 8 step on.

The cutters can pull up for a jump shot
Neither cutter receives the ball and goes to the corners and the post dribble attacks the basket finishes or kicks.

Drill 2:

1 passes to 4 then cuts through to form a strong side triangle. 7 is in the MID-POST. That is very important.

4 passes into 7 and then cuts looking for handoff or drop pass. If 4 does not recieve the ball then will continue to the corner. As soon as 4 makes its cut, 1 comes off of 4's rear end over the top of 7. 1 looks for the hand off or drop pass. 1 does not get the ball, will continue to the opposite wing. Now 7 has a post move for a score or a post move and kick opposite.

The wings can do so many things, and it becomes a read and react. Example: As soon as 4 passes to 7, 1's man turns his head and 1 immediately takes off on a back door move. 4 reads what 1 did and can go toward 7 and then fade for a jumpshot, continue on with regular cut and fill opposite. Most teams just learning will stick to basic cut.

Drill 3:

If the wing is overplayed, 7 will pop to the high post area. As this is happening, 4 takes man up higher and cuts hard backdoor as the ball is in the air to 7. 7 looks to pass to 4 on the backdoor cut and continues to the corner. If not there, 1 comes around 7 for a handoff and goes to the basket or pulls up for the jumpshot. 7 can also attack the basket with a jumpshot or dribble move. 1 and 4 are spotted up for the kickout.

Drill 4:

On the guard to guard pass, 7 steps up to set a backscreen for 1. 4 looks to 1 coming off of the backscreen. 7 then sets a screen for 4.

4 can use the screen and has options:
a. shoot( we like the ball to get to the elbow)
b. pass to 7 on the
roll to the basket or the pop.
c. pass to 1 for a shot.

4 does not have to use the screen especially if defender is looking to get over the screen early.

Drill 5:

1 passes to 4 and 7 sets the backscreen for 1. This time instead of setting a screen for 4, 7 pops high for a pass back from 4.

4 sets a downscreen for 1 who goes to the wing. 4 opens up to the ball and looks for the pass from 7. 7 passes to 1 and receives a backscreen from 4. 1 looks to 7 going to the basket or 4 stepping out for the shot.

Drill 6:

This is where ball reversal begins. This is also the most used option.
1 passes to 4 and cuts to the corner to form a strong side triangle. 4 looks inside and then passes to 1.

7 steps up to set a screen for 4. 4 goes all the way through to the corner if she does not receive pass for layup from 1.

7 then plays screen and role with 1. 1 has the option to:
a. shoot
b. hit 7 on the roll or pop
c. draw and kick to 2
d. draw and kick to 4

Drill 7:

Weakside Play

1 passes to 2 and fills the corner spot. 3 goes to the top of the key area.
If 3's man is above the three point line, the pass goes to 7 who is flashing at the same time. As the ball is in the air to 7, 3 cuts hard backdoor.
7 looks for the backdoor pass. If 3 does not get the ball, she fills to the corner.

For the drill sake, the perimeter players move in a counter clockwise movement from wing to point to wing.

If 3's man is inside the three point line, then 2 passes to 3 and 7 will screen for 3 and play pick and roll.


Lots of backdoor cuts, with an open lane. Give and gos, handoffs, and even PNRs. I've even gone through some notes that have a 1-4 high motion continuity that is a patterned offense. 2-3 high is also a good one to use because in my opinion you can use it to overload a side to start which means you can take advantage of weakside opportunities easier. Anyways, hope that helps some of you all as you get ready to start practices.

If you're seriously thinking of going with the high post offense this season, you should look at Coach Auriemma's DVD on teaching the high post offense. To discuss this and many more of your favorite basketball topics, head over to the X's and O's of Basketball Forum to talk with other coaches from around the world.