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4-On-4 w/ Baseline Touch

4-On-4 w/ Baseline Touch is a hybrid of team transition offense, defensive rotations and communication, and live play. It’s the perfect drill to allow your players some freedom, while assuring brief stops for rest and coaching points.

Set Up

The drill requires two teams of four players. Coach starts with a ball near the top of the key. The offensive players line up on the baseline: one in each corner and one on each lane line. The defensive players line up along the foul-line to foul-line extended, one across from each offensive player.

How It Works

Coach throws a pass to any of the offensive players. The offensive team immediately attacks down the court. Three defensive players rush back to defend, but the player standing across from the receiver must touch the nearby baseline before he/she can run back. This gives the offensive team a brief 4-on-3 advantage and incentive to find a quick shot. The defensive goal is to stop the 4-on-3 break until the trailer can get back and even the playing field. When the possession ends, the defensive team brings the ball back down the court on offense and the offensive team turns to defense. After the second possession ends, teams should switch starting positions so that the original defensive team begins on offense next time around.

Key coaching points

-When defending the 4-on-3 advantage, the first priority should be stopping the ball. The two remaining defenders must communicate in order to effectively “split” the three off-ball offensive players.  

-When returning to defense, the trail player should always look to take the offensive player farthest from the ball.  

-Depending on the number of players present, coaches should substitute players on each team after each two-possession run.

-Coaches may run the drill for a specific time period or up to a set score.