Basketball Systems, Skills & Drills

Scramble fullcourt

Jim Larranaga DVD,
American Basketball Quarterly (ABQ) 2005Q4

George Mason University has five fullcourt defences:

- fullcourt man
- quick trap
- slow trap
- twist
- 55 (1-2-1-1 matchup)

Fullcourt man sets up the other defences, has no traps but has extreme pressure all over the floor. X4 is on 4, hands up, can jump, does not overplay 4 to the middle (his run would be longer). Defenders deny the inbounds pass but try not to get beat with a long pass. Like-size defenders switch on screens. Turn the ballhandler 3 times in the backcourt, nose on the ball. Other defenders are up the line between the ball and their man, faking at the dribbler to make him think a trap may be coming and slow him down.

Quick trap

The short corner is the trapping area. On the inbounds pass, X4 quickly traps the ball.

Everyone moves in the direction of the ball ("three to the ball"). X1 and X3 are looking to pick off a reversal or sideline pass. X1 and X3 are the interceptors, X5 is back with 5 and is the goaltender.

ABQ - X1 splits the space between 2 and 4 looking for an errant pass, X3 splits 2 and 3.

It's one trap then back if the press is broken, make a quick conversion, it's not so important who you have, but you will be guarding someone, and there will be pressure on the ball.

ABQ - On a pass out of the trap back to inbounder 4, X1 takes the ball. X4, who left his man to trap, goes where his help came from, and takes 2. Now we are in our basic fullcourt man. X1 applies nose-on-the-ball pressure, X2 denies 1, and the other defenders are up the line, faking at the dribbler.

Slow trap

X2 forces 1 to the middle. Once 1 dribbles, X2 and X4 herd him until a trap is formed. X1 comes across, X3 moves in the direction of the ball. X5 is the goalie.

Slow trap is especially good if the inbounder is a non-ballhandler (e.g., 4 or 5), but is still a good option if he can handle the ball since he is not the primary ballhandler.

ABQ - On a pass to inbounder 4, X1 would take the ball and X4 take 2, and we are now at our basic fullcourt man defence (X2 denies 1).

If 4 inbounds and cuts up the middle, X1 tries to pick off any pass. If 4 gets a pass in the middle, it's one trap and back.

If 1 passes to 2, there is still time for a second trap, by X1 and X4.

X4 is the official trapper, if he thinks he can trap a dribbler before midcourt, especially secondary ballhandlers.


As the ball is taken out by O4, X4 twists and double teams by face guarding 1 (or the most likely receiver). Other defenders must not allow a long inbounds pass.

Twist is a great option after a time-out, and a terrific way to get a 5-second violation.

If the other team uses a 4-across pressure set, don't front them (except by X4), don't allow any long passes.

With 1 denied, 2 is forced to get open. On the inbounds pass to 2, it is easy to go from twist to slow trap, X4 can release 1 and slow trap 2 with X2 (herd then trap).

ABQ - On the inbounds pass to 2, X4 recovers to 4, X1 denies 1, and we are in basic fullcourt man.

55 (1-2-1-1 match-up zone)

Look to deny the first pass then trap it if made. X4 is always on the ball, X2 on the right, X3 on the left, X1 in the middle, and X5 is back.

X2 and X3 switch any screen and attempt to deny the inbounds pass. X4 immediately traps on the pass.

See quick trap.

ABQ - X2 splits 2 and 4, anticipating a pass back to 4, X1 splits 3 and 2.

ABQ - On a pass back to 4, X2 picks him up, X1 rotates to pick up 2, and X4 guards 3 (going to where his help came from). X3 denies 1 and we are in basic fullcourt man.

Move X5 up to midcourt if the other team brings more people back, e.g., 4-across.

X5 allows no layups, X1 anticipates passes to the elbows, X3 splits 1 and 3, X2 anticipates a pass to 5 but also to 2.

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2007-18 Eric Johannsen