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Morphing 1-3-1 to 3-2 Zone Defense


(See more by Jeffrey Jones)

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Item Number: BD-05651

Morphing 1-3-1 to 3-2 Zone Defense



Morphing 1-3-1 to 3-2 Zone Defense

Seamlessly transition from a 1-3-1 zone to a 3-2 zone defense in games to stifle opponents!

  • Determine the personnel requirements and assignments for players within 1-3-1 and 3-2 zone looks
  • Learn how Coach Jones teaches his players to change from the 1-3-1 to the 3-2 without skipping a beat
  • Observe breakdown drills for the 3-2 zone to help your defense last deep into the shot clock


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with Jeff Jones,
Old Dominion University Head Coach;
2019 Conference USA Coach of the Year;
2019 Conference USA regular season & Tournament champions;
former American University Head Coach;
2x Patriot League Coach of the Year ('02, '09);
2x Patriot League Tournament Champions ('08, '09);
4x Patriot League Regular Season Champions ('02, '04, '08, '09)

Jeff Jones has used his "13" defense in recent seasons to change the rhythm of the game. More importantly, his 1-3-1 defense into a 3-2 zone defense has provided a change-up that creates a challenging obstacle for his opponents. This video details exactly how Coach Jones uses this 1-3-1 to 3-2 look and will help you implement it with your own team.

13 Defense

Jones begins by setting up the personnel for the 1-3-1 defense. After the ball crosses the half-court line, the top player must prevent direct line passes that reverse the basketball. The player in the middle must stay active and be ready to guard against any kind of dribble penetration. The wings in the defense play outside-in and bluff and retreat. Again, no direct passes are to be made to the corner if the wings play the defense correctly. Meanwhile, the 4-man is in the back and gets to the ball-side block once the ball crosses the half-court line with the opposite-side wing looks to take away any diagonal lob passes.

Coach Jones explains why direct passes hurt the defense the most and also mentions, in relation to the shot clock, how long the 1-3-1 defense and the 3-2 zone get played if the 1-3-1 defense is executed correctly.

Changing into the 3-2 Zone Defense

For the "13 Defense" to morph into the 3-2 zone defense, the ball must get into the corner. From here, Jones discusses how each player has a responsibility to get into position and what they must do. The look that is created gives the impression of a 2-3 zone defense like any other zone. However, this defense provides a different look in that the 3-2 is created on the pass out of the corner.

Additionally, Coach Jones covers the pick & roll against the zone, as well as the pass into the high post. You'll also see how to adjust when you have a big man who lacks the mobility to get out to the corner. One final adjustment that is taken into consideration is the dribble to the corner from the wing, in which the wing in the zone covers all the way to the corner.

Breakdown Drills for the 3-2 Zone Defense

To teach the 3-2 zone defense effectively, Jones introduces drills to break down the bottom of the zone and the top of the zone. For the bottom of the zone, four offensive players are used along the baseline with one in each corner and one in each short corner. With two passers on top, the ball moves with the two bottom defenders having to move with the pass.

The three top defenders have a separate breakdown with two offensive players on top, an offensive player in the high post, and one offensive player in each corner. The three top defenders will move on the pass to cover their responsibilities in the zone. Also included is how the pick & roll is defended from the top of the defense.

The concept of changing from a 1-3-1 half-court defense into a 3-2 zone is one that few teams run on a consistent basis. If you want your team to offer a different look on defense to throw off your opponents, consider giving Coach Jones' system a try!

62 minutes. 2020.

See more products by: Jeffrey Jones

See related products: 1-3-1 Zone 3-2 Zone
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