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Monday, March 28, 2011

BRAD STEVENS AND BUTLER'S DEFENSIVE PHILOSOPHY (PART II)

From a clinic given at the University of Florida comes some great notes from Butler's Brad Stevens talking about the Bulldogs' defensive principles.

Here is Part II of those clinic notes:

COMMITMENT

"Your players must be completely committed to the system.  In my 11 years I've never had a player in our program that worked his tail off on the defensive end that wasn't a great teammate and student.  Defense is about players that do their job on every play and that makes you feel proud to be part of the team."

Commitment starts with establishing the correct mindset.

Coach Stevens referenced Do Rivers from last year's Florida clinic: "Believe or Leave."  If your players believe, you can establish a Defensive DNA.

Coach Stevens felt that when he had young teams, that creating a good defensive team gave him the best chance to win.

He is also a big believe in utilizing statistics to challenge your team.

Example: Earlier in the season Butler was giving up 45% from the floor, but they found out that if they had gotten three more stops per game, they would be giving up 39%.  Defensive field goal percentage dropped 2 percentage points for every stop.

Coach Stevens also likes the 10 day break during the season to work on developing his defense.

A key to the Butler defensive system is that it is build to defend everything no matter what is being run against it -- whether you had it in the scouting report or not.  At the same time, he wants his defense to have a degree of unpredictability.

Next: Defensive DNA #2: Positioning