#3 Jahlil Jenkins: 6’0″ 160 lbs, Junior Point Guard
15.6 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 2.6 apg
Point Guard. Aggressive offensive player. Shooter. No 3’s! Have to be tight on him to take away his 3’s off the dribble. He likes to shoot off the dribble. Prefers to drive it right. When he drives it he likes to shoot the floater because it is tough for him to finish around the rim. Have to get your hands up and make him finish over you. Stay between him and the basket when he drives it. Go over the ballscreens and handoffs when he comes off, he likes to shoot behind them. No help off of him when he doesn’t have it. Contest everything. More shots than points.
#5 Xzavier Malone-Key: 6’4″ 186 lbs, Redshirt Junior Guard
20.3 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 3.7 apg
Lefty. Shooter. No 3’s! Have to be tight on him and take away the catch-and-shoot 3’s. 17 of his 33 shots have been 3’s. Find him in transition. Get over the ballscreens and handoffs when he comes off, he likes to shoot behind them. Have to chase him off any down screens and get over the flares. Will bring it in transition some when he gets it. Very aggressive offensive player. Really wants to drive it left when you take away the catch-and-shoot. No help off of him when he doesn’t have it. Contest everything. More shots than points.
#2 Brandon Rush: 6’3″ 175 lbs, Freshman Guard
8.6 ppg, 34.6% 3pt
Lefty. Shooter. No 3’s. 26 of his 52 shots have been 3’s. Have to be there to take away the catch-and-shoot. Find him in transition. Have to chase him off the down screens and get over any flares. Once you take away the catch-and-shoot be ready for the left hand drive. No left hand drives. Tighten up as the ball comes towards you so you can be there on the catch. Good athlete. No help off of him when he doesn’t have it. Looking for opportunities to cut to the basket if you turn your head or over help. When he does drive it he is not thinking about passing. Look for opportunities to come take it off of him.
#21 Elyjah Williams: 6’7″ 220 lbs, Junior Forward
12.7 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 1.9 bpg
Strong, stocky forward. Driver. No right hand drives. Closeout short to stay between him and the basket and take away the right hand drives. If he does shoot it from outside just throw a hand up to contest. Physical driver. No layups. All right hand. If you make him finish with you between him and the basket his percentages will go down. When he catches it in the post he is looking to score with his right hand with his left shoulder. Averaging 2 offensive rebounds per game. BOX OUT!!!
#12 Kaleb Bishop: 6’8″ 210 lbs, Senior Forward
12.9 ppg, 9.0 rpg
Stretch forward. Capable shooter. 7-19 from 3 on the season. No catch-and-shoot 3’s. You don’t have to fly at him, but you need to be close enough to be there to take away the easy catch-and-shoot 3’s. When he catches it in the post he is looking to score it with his right hand over his left shoulder. Be physical with him and make him catch it off the block. Will use the shot fake to try and lift you and get to the rim off the dribble. Stay down! BOX OUT!!! Outstanding offensive rebounder. Averaging over 2 offensive rebounds per game.
#4 Brandon Powell: 6’2″ 185 lbs, Sophomore Guard
5.2 ppg, 4.0 rpg
Play him straight up. Capable shooter. Don’t need to fly at him until he makes a couple. Just be there to take away the obvious catch and shoot. Will play as the backup Point Guard some when he comes in. No right hand drives. Just stay between him and the basket and make him finish over you. Can pick and choose your opportunities to help off of him. Not a good finisher! Do not bail him out by fouling.
#25 Daniel Rodriguez: 6’6″ 250 lbs, Freshman Forward
3.1 ppg, 2.1 rpg
Thick, undersized post. Right hand, left shoulder in the post. Just make him score with you between him and the basket. Don’t let him lift you with a shot fake. STAY DOWN! Box him out.
#11 Callum Baker: 6’0″ 160 lbs, Freshman Guard
0.3 ppg, 1.3 rpg
5 of 7 shots have been 3’s. Mostly in there as a ball handler and defender. No right hand drives. When he drives it he is driving to pass. Do not over help when he drives. Make him score with you between him and the basket. Help off of him when he is on the perimeter until he makes a couple.
#0 Devon Dunn: 6’1″ 175 lbs, Freshman Guard
9.3 ppg, 43.8% 3pt
Has missed the last 3 games so I don’t expect to see him this evening. Shooter!!! No 3’s. 16 of 27 shots have been 3’s. Have to get over screens, chase him, and be tight to take away any catch-and-shoot 3’s. Find him in transition. Cannot help off of him. Not thinking about passing it when he drives.
Their base offense is a Ball Screen Continuity offense. They will start with the ball on a wing and have a forward set a ballscreen and roll. The other forward is lifted around the top of the key with a guard on the opposite wing and in the opposite corner. If the ball is moved ahead to the forward the original ball handler will “replace himself” back to the wing. The forward will turn and take a dribble towards the corner as the wing guard back cuts and fills out the backside. Now the forward will either pass to the guard in the corner and run into a ballscreen or just dribble handoff with him. You can see the an example of them running their Continuity all the way through below.
Outside of their Ballscreen stuff, they will run a few pretty traditional set plays. They have a diagonal screen, downscreen play that they go to quite a bit. Start in a Box Set with the forwards on the elbows and guards on the blocks. Point Guard hits the forward on the left elbow and the ball side guard spaces out to the corner. The PG spaces away to the right wing as the forward comes to the top of the key. Ball is reversed to the PG on the right wing. The guard on the right block works his way up to set a diagonal back screen for the forward who got the initial catch as the ball is reversed. The forward at the top of the key will then set a downscreen for the screener. This is a traditional screen-the-screener action that UK has guarded against almost every opponent this season.
Just like the diagonal screen-the-screener play, they run a cross screen/downscreen action a lot as well. The action begins in a very similar fashion but gets to a cross screen for the forward instead of the diagonal. You can see it develop in the clip below. Also, see how #21 comes all the way out to the perimeter to get his catch as opposed to posting up on the block. Their undersized post guys would rather come out further and face you up. Have to be ready to guard the drive from all of their “big guys.”
Another play they will run ends with #5 in an ISO situation to drive it left. It will begin with him with the ball and he dribbles it over to the left wing. They start in a Secondary alignment. The rim-run post will swing out wide and the trailing forward with run towards the wing to set a staggered double for a guard coming out of the corner. If he can’t get a catch for a shot he will just curl through and out the backside and the other guard in the ball side corner will run the baseline to come off another staggered double from the two forwards. As this happens, #5 will look to beat his man off the dribble going left.
A lot of what they do in the half court is just moving the pieces around to set up their ballscreens in the way they want. However, they do start a lot of possessions with a simple High Flat ballscreen for #3. He is really good at playing off of these. Typically, we would “Weak” the Flat to force the ball-handler to his left hand (in this scenario). However, #3 is VERY good at coming off left and getting back to his right off of the Flat so I think we just need to switch it like we did a lot against Mount St. Mary and use the length of our big men to make it hard on him to make his floaters in the lane. Just back up and stay between him and the basket.
They play mostly man-to-man defense and will switch a lot of screens. They switch almost all ballscreens and handoffs. On off-ball screens they will still switch a lot as well. They have extended their man-to-man into the full-court some, but expect mostly to see half-court man-to-man defense.
Keys to the Game
- Make #3 & #5 work for what they get. These two guards are good players. They are very aggressive and are going to make some tough shots. We need to get over the ballscreens, take away catch-and-shoot 3’s, and not allow layups. Contest everything! More shots than points for these guys.
- No 3’s for #2. The lefty can really shoot it and wants to catch-and-shoot. We have to tighten up to him as the ball is driven his way. Do not help off of him! No 3’s for this guy.
- Box out #21 & #12. These guys are undersized, but they are strong and play very, very hard. They are both averaging 2+ offensive rebounds per game. We need to be physical, box them out, and limit them to one shot per possession.
- Execute Ballscreen Defense plan. Between the Flat ballscreens for #3 and their normal Continuity we are going to have to execute and communicate our ballscreen defense on every possession usually multiple times per possession. If we can keep a guy on a guy and stay between them and the basket they will have a hard time scoring enough to stay in the game.