Basketball Drills for High School Basketball Players

December 23, 2011
by Justin

Welcome back to Hardwood High School, your top-tier source for tips, techniques, drills about everything in high school basketball with a college basketball perspective. Volume one was about the importance of great defense, and the second volume was all about you, the high school basketball player, who’s looking for the best opportunity to play at the next level. Week three was all about Duke and UNC basketball’s coaches and their high-level tips. Week four was all about AAU basketball and how to infiltrate the complex world of AAU sports. Week five will get into what takes you to the next level; college basketball level drills and workouts. Let’s get into some of them right now.


College Basketball Drills: Sideline Touches “Baby J’s”

This college basketball drill requires two to three people. One player has the basketball on the baseline as if they are making an inbounds pass. The second player starts on left sideline and runs to the 12 ft. mark in front of the rim to receive basketball from under the basket. If you have a third player, they run from the right sideline, and cuts to the 12 ft. mark in front of the rim. There should be at least 12 shots are taken, with six coming from each side. Another six shots come next, with pump faking, different dribbling progressions, and any type of live game basketball movement. The emphasis of this college basketball drill is to focus on the one and two step progression, along with changing pace going from the sideline and returning back to shoot the basketball.


College Basketball Drills: Layup, Elbow, Corner

This college basketball drill requires two people. The main player with the basketball acts as the passer and the rebounder. Player two starts from the left block with their back turned to player one. From the baseline, the first player passes the basketball on go for a power layup and rebounds the basketball for the second progression. The second player sprints to the 28 ft. marker and simulates coming off a screen while curling to the elbow. Player one then receives the basketball, and shoots the second shot. They then move to the corner, while chopping their steps to establish proper footwork, and set up for the corner three. This third basketball shot simulates a sideline-inbounds play, where you would come off a screen on the baseline and attack the defender. Repeat the circuit and shoot 15 shots. The emphasis on this college basketball drill is to make the shooter work hard to change speeds while cutting. This simulates actual game fatigue, which will better prepare you for a strong fourth quarter.


College Basketball Drills: Back Pedal Shooting

This college basketball drill requires two people. The shooter backpedals from the baseline until the passer slams the basketball to the ground. The passer then calls out an area of the basketball court like, “left elbow, or right corner.” The shooter sprints to the area and the passer passes the basketball to them so they can shoot, once they square up. The shooter then gets their own rebound and passes basketball back to the passer. Once the ball is secured, the shooter repeats the circuit until they put up 15 shots. Drills like this help you to focus on proper footwork. Not all shots are going to be wide open and uncontested. Great footwork and a quick release will make up for things like great athleticism and size.


Be sure to focus on playing harder and not about the day-to-day politics of your basketball program. There are just as much if not more politics at the college basketball level of athletics; your job is to never allow these issues in high school basketball to suppress with your future prospects in your sport. Ultimately, you should continue to work on your game, so when it comes time to show and prove, your skill on the basketball court speaks for itself. Check back next week for another installment of Hardwood High. Until then, this is Yorick Hempstead signing off.


Yorick Hempstead is an ex-college athlete who is a sports blogger for ScoutMe. He is always talking sports on twitter @HempsteadHuddle.

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