The past two seasons at LSU we have lead the nation in defense. The previous two season before that we finished 5th. A major reason has been our ability to stress Coach Meyer's above defensive principle. It is amazing when watching tape (on your team or another) how often players work hard defensively to stay between the ball and the basket but fail to aggressively challenge a shot (and hit those shots at a much higher rate). At least once a year, we will take a practice video and chart shooting percentages on uncontested shots compared to shooting against good shot pressure. We share those stats with our players and watch video examples of both. In fact, there will always be a phase of video clips from every game that we play with at least a couple of examples of our opponents making shots against no pressure as opposed to an extended hand in the way. We also constantly make that a daily emphasis, barking at our players to "challenge the shot."
There can and should not be anything more frustrating than a great defensive possession wasted. We define a "wasted defensive position" as "execution of all defensive fundamentals except for blocking out." To beat your opponent down the floor to take away transition...place good pressure on the basketball...take away post feeds and dribble penetration...and influence the offense to take a non-rhythm shot -- only to have one player not blockout and allow the offense another shot at the goal, or worse, an easy put back, is a back breaker. Blocking out is picking up your paycheck at the end of the week. No way you put in 40 hours of manual labor and forget to pick up that check.
Coach's terminology above, as it is so often, is incredibly simple -- but it is also incredibly accurate!