Kevin McGuff: Inside the Pack Line Defense

Kevin McGuff: Inside the Pack Line Defense
Kevin McGuff: Inside the Pack Line Defense
Item# BD-04972
Availability: Usually ships the same business day

Product Description

Take away your opponent's ability to drive the ball while limiting offensive rebounds with the Pack Line defense
  • Improve your players' on-ball defense to prevent breakdowns and reduce the need for help defense
  • Develop transition defense that meshes with the Pack Line to slow down your opponents' offensive attack
  • Effectively defend off-ball screens using a numbering system that simplifies in-game adjustments and player communication
with Kevin McGuff,
Ohio State University Women's Basketball Head Coach;
2010 NCAA Elite Eight (Xavier University); 12 Postseason Tournaments in 14 Seasons; .700 Overall Win Percentage

Do you have a defensive system that can help you win against the toughest opponents in the most adverse situations? Kevin McGuff has used the Pack Line defense to incredible success over his coaching career, leading turnarounds at both the University of Washington and Ohio State University.

This defense will establish an identity for your players based on eliminating dribble penetration by crowding the ball with help defenders. Coach McGuff will lead you through the principles of the Pack Line, including how to set the defense in transition, develop great on-ball defenders, defend the post, help on drives, get through screens and rebound.

Defensive Philosophy

To develop a great defense, it's all about what you emphasize with your players. Coach McGuff clearly outlines the goals of the Pack Line system, its benefits, why it came into prominence, the three statistics in games that correlate with success, and the terminology used to better teach the defense's key components.

Important talking points such as how to defend the post, defending pin-down and stagger screens, weak side exchanges, defending the baseline drive, and gap integrity are all explained. Coach McGuff also uses a 4-on-4 shell drill to better demonstrate the movements, actions, and responsibilities required by the defensive unit.

Transition Defense

Learn how to merge your philosophies on offensive rebounding and limiting fast breaks through your transition defense system. Coach McGuff demonstrates the roles and responsibilities of each player in the 5-on-0 Transition Defense drill. This approach will help you initiate the Pack Line defense by getting your players ahead of the ball to build a wall of defenders.

Individual Drills

Understanding a scheme is important, but equally important is the presence of instructional drills that a coach can use within a practice setting to help create an identity and build the attitude, knowledge level, and comfort level of the players involved. Coach McGruff supplies five drills that emphasize individual elements of the Pack Line defense and breaks the components down into isolated actions that players can develop. Aspects of the drills involve:

  • Closeouts
  • On-ball pressure
  • Forming the "Pack Line" and "Building a Wall"
  • Moving on the flight of the ball
  • Rebounding and toughness

Team Defense

Coach McGuff shows you how he gets his players to coordinate with one another to play team defense. With three progressions of the Shell Drill, you will learn how to stunt early to stop drives, recover to gaps on the flight of the ball, and prevent face cuts.

He also explains several aspects of defending the post, including how to deny post feeds, dig with perimeter players, and wall up when the post gets the ball. The Change Drill will force your players to communicate as they rotate to find their match-ups on defense.

Defending Screens

See how you can utilize a number system for communicating how to defend any type of screen your players will encounter. With this method, your players will have the flexibility to counter your opponent's offensive strategies. Multiple methods for defending down screens, stagger screens, and ball screens are all shown with player demonstration.


A defensive possession is never over until you've secured the ball. Coach McGuff will show two variations of his favorite rebounding drill - High Low Rebounding. This drill will develop your players' shooting, rebounding, and toughness as they compete to hit shots and rebound.

This video will give you the foundation you need to install the Pack Line defense with your team.

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