Pack Line Defense for Youth Basketball

Pack Line Defense for Youth Basketball

Youth Basketball Defense


If you have followed College Basketball the last couple of seasons there is a good chance that you have heard of the Pack Line Defense utilized by the University of Virginia.  Because of the makeup of the Pack Line Defense we believe it has great application at the Youth Basketball level.  Over the past several years using many of the Pack Line defensive principles with a few nuances for Youth Basketball we have developed what we call the Brat-Pack.  The Brat-Pack Defense plays to the percentages that most Youth Basketball players are neither great outside shooters, ball handlers, or passers.   We believe it combines the best qualities of Man and Zone defenses:

  1. There is constant pressure on the ball.
  2. Gap and Help defenders protect the paint/lane area and limit the number of layups enticing the opposition to shoot lower percentage shots from the outside.
  3. It takes offensive players out of their comfort zone by constantly forcing them to their weak hand.
  4. There is no confusion on box out assignments.
  5. It keeps kids engaged and involved.
  6. It is simple to learn and can be taught with limited practice time.
  7. It helps average teams be more competitive.

Below is a brief video of one our Youth Basketball teams using the Brat-Pack Defense:



If you would like to learn more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Brat-Pack Defense eBook below:


Beating the Press in Youth Basketball

Beating the Press in Youth Basketball

7 Tips for Youth Basketball Coaches


The Press in Youth Basketball can be both devastating and demoralizing for your team if not properly prepared for.  Below are some Coaching Points we use when teaching our Youth Basketball teams how to handle the Press:

Tips for Beating the Press in Youth Basketball

Tips for Beating the Press in Youth Basketball


  1. The best way to beat the Press after a made basket is to attack it before it can set up.
  2. The Press is beaten with the pass and not the dribble.
  3. Teach the inbound passer to avoid initiating the Press Break from behind the backboard.
  4. Teach the inbound passer that after a made basket they can run the baseline if needed.
  5. Teach your players to face the Press and not turn their backs to the defense.
  6. Show your players where the Danger Zones are on the court and teach them to stay out of them.
  7. Don’t fear the Press, but rather see it as an opportunity to score.

If you would like to learn more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Attacking the Press eBook below:

Youth Basketball Practice Plan

Youth Basketball Practice Plan

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” – Benjamin Franklin


Youth Basketball Practice PlanAs a youth basketball coach we often don’t have all of the practice time we would like.  Because of this fact practice time is precious and should not be wasted.  Consequently we feel one of the most important things you can do as a youth coach is have a written practice plan for every practice.  When developing your basketball practice plan consider the following:

  1. Practice Priorities.  What must you get accomplished for that practice.
  2. Drills and their lengths.  We try to keep our between 5 and 10 minutes.
  3. Coaching points and responsibilities for Assistant Coaches.
  4. Water Breaks.


When choosing drills for your basketball practice plan consider the quote below:

“Don’t mistake activity for achievement.” – John Wooden


Understand the purpose of a drill and what it teaches and how it fits into your overall plan.  Don’t run into the trap of using a drill just because it was what your former coaches used when you were a player.

If you would like to learn more, we encourage you to take a look at our Youth Basketball – Coaching Guide eBook below:

Youth Football Drills – Offensive Line

Youth Football Drills

(Offensive Line – Fast Get Offs)


One of the difficulties Youth Football Offensive Line coaches face each year is getting their young Offensive Lineman to fire off the ball.  A youth football drill that helps address this challenge that has been a staple in our practice plans through the years is the tennis ball drill.  Another drill that we recently came across comes to us from Coach Kyle Mlinek on the forum.  The name of the drill is the Topple Drill and much like the tennis ball drill its purpose is to help players quickly come of the ball.

Youth Football Drills - Topple Setup and Execution

Youth Football Drills – Topple Setup

Drill Setup and Execution

  • 1 Standup Dummy
  • Create 2 lines with players on either side of the Standup Blocking Dummy about 1 foot way.
  • On your Cadence, each player will try and topple the Dummy first.
  • Once done, each player rotates to the other line.






If you are looking for additional youth football drills for your team, we encourage you to take a look at the CLYFL Youth Football Drill Book.  It consists of 85 drills covering many aspects of the game.  If you need more drill ideas, please take a look out our YouTube library of football drills.  Our library includes drills for Offense, Defense, and Special Teams.  We have even included some Flag Football drills.

Youth Basketball Coaching Clinics

Youth Basketball Coaching Clinics


Coaching Youth BasketballTo expand our clinic offerings to Youth Basketball we have added the following series of clinics to our Clinic Schedule:

We are also looking for Youth Basketball Coaches that share our passion for the game that would also be willing to share their knowledge.  If you might be interested in hosting a clinic with us, please contact us using the form below:


Youth Basketball Drills – Rebounding

Youth Basketball Drills

(2 on 1 Rebounding Drill)


In our previous Youth Basketball Drills blog post we shared our tweak to the 6 Shot Circuit Shooting Drill called the 10 Shot Circuit.  In this post we are going share a simple Rebounding Drill that over the years has become a staple in our practices.

Youth Basketball Drills - 2on1 Rebounding Setup

Youth Basketball Drills – 2on1 Rebounding Setup

Drill Setup

  • 1 basketball
  • Line up players in a single file near half court from the shortest to tallest player.
  • First player goes to the rebounding position in the middle of the lane.
  • Second and third players line up on the elbows as shooters.
  • Coach is on the wing with the basketball.
  • Rotation is rebounder to end of the line, shooter to rebounder, shooter to shooter, next player in line to shooter.

Youth Basketball Drills - 2on1 Rebounding

Youth Basketball Drills – 2on1 Rebounding

Drill Execution

  1. Coach passes to one of the shooters who then takes a shot.
  2. Rebounder blocks out the opposite shooter who is trying to get the offensive rebound.  Note: If the shot is made, just treat it as a miss.  
  3. If the shooter/offensive player gets the rebound, the rebounder must do 5 push-ups on the side of the court prior to rotating to the end of the line.
  4. To make the drill more challenging require the rebounder to let the ball hit the floor before securing the rebound.  This will put an emphasis on the rebounder moving their feet.


Coaching Points

  • Rebounder should find the player first, block out, and then go get the ball.
  • Emphasize proper spacing from the basket.  If the rebounder is too close to the basket, the offensive players has the advantage.
  • Teach the rebounder that if they get pushed under the basket to spin putting their rear-end on the offensive player’s rear-end pinning them under the basket.

If you need more drill ideas, please take a look at our YouTube library of youth basketball drills.

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