2 Man Half Court Coverage
This play demonstrates the importance of discussing areas of coverage during your pre game. As #10 white passes the ball to #4 white, the trail must step out onto the court and continue to stay connected with the on ball matchup. As #4 white dribbles toward the sideline (foul line extended), the ball settles as two defenders trap #4 white at the point where the lead and trail's primary coverage areas intersect. Notice how the lead steps out wide to begin officiating the trap. Both officials eyes are watching the same play for roughly 5 seconds (leaving the other 7 players playing on the 'honor system'). The lead should position himself wide enough to take an 'outside-in' look and accept the play as it settles near the sideline. The trail needs to remain on the court and have a 'big picture' mentality and get as many players in his vision (including the players involved in the trap). When the ball is passed out of the trap, the trail must run back toward a spot between the 'NCAA' logo and the 3 pt arc to help with rebounding.
2 man- half court inbounds play coverage example
During this play, look where the lead and trail position themselves when the thrower-in is handed the ball. The lead takes several steps away from the thrower-in and positions himself too wide. The trail's position is good as he starts slightly above the 3pt arc and off of the sideline. As the initial inbounds pass is made across the paint to #14 black as he cuts to the basket, the trail has an initial open look to officiate the play. The lead needs to move at an accelerated pace to close down when this pass is made. As #14 black accepts the pass and begins his move with his back to the basket, the trail should step down to obtain an open look. The trail officiates this play flat footed and is looking through #14 blacks backside when the try is released. Obtaining an open look will help you correctly rule on illegal arm/elbow contact, 'step-throughs', and verticality.
3 man- half court coverage / rotation example
(click here for video)
Trail- as the trail, you want to remain 1-2 steps to the side and 2-3 strides behind the ball handler as the ball is moving from the back court to the front court. Additionally, the trail needs to maintain an open look between the ball handler & the primary defender while keeping as many other players in his vision (big picture mentality). Center- as the center, the ideal starting position is free throw line extended & 1 step off of the sideline. From this position, use the 'two step' rule to position adjust to obtain open looks both on and off the ball. To maintain an open look, stay at least 2 steps away from the players. If they move and you end up in ‘stacked’ position, you can take 1-2 steps to regain your open look; the closer you are to the players, the more steps you will need to take in order to maintain open looks. This also applies to movement in the trail position.Lead- lead official initiates almost all rotations. As the lead, there are 3 'immediates' or instances when you should NOT rotate- an immediate swing pass, an immediate shot, or an immediate dribble drive. In all other situations where the ball moves to the other side of the front court, the lead should initiate a rotation. As the ball crosses half court, the lead should 'mirror' the ball and position him/herself slightly wider then the ball while continuing to look 'outside->in'. When the ball enters the lane area extended, the lead should 'close down' or 'pinch the paint' and position him/herself at the point where the laneline and endline meet.
When the ball moves across the laneline extended to the opposite side of the court, the lead should briefly pause to determine if one of the ‘3 immediates’ will occur. Provided they do not, the lead should move at an accelerated pace across the lane to initiate a rotation. As the lead moves across the lane, he/she should ‘referee where they came from’ (assuming there are ‘match ups’ in the paint that require it) instead of immediately starting to watch the ball.
In this example, the lead did not close down / pinch the paint properly when the ball entered the laneline extended. If the lead closes down and stops briefly, a rotation would not have occurred as an ‘immediate pass’ occurs and the ball ends up back on the lead / trail’s side of the court. When the post entry pass is made, the lead would be correctly closed down (instead of on the opposite side of the paint). As #23 white makes his offensive move, the trail in the video would still be in the center position (approximately foul line extended- had the lead not rotated) and have the best open look to officiate this play.