The “Princeton Offence” is not a set pattern but instead is a structure of play that breaks down into a series of “3 man game” opportunities. The “back door” cut is often regarded as the hallmark of the offence, however it is much more than that.
For a team to effectively use the Princeton Offence all players must have good offensive fundamentals – understanding “spacing” and passing and having the ability to pass, shoot and dribble from the perimeter. Two basic principles underpin the offence:
- The player in front of you (i.e. your defender) tells you where to go;
- If a defender overplays you (denies the ball), cut back door.
There are low-post and high-post opportunities within the Princeton Offence. The high post offence has the following advantages:
- Using the high post spreads the floor more and leaves the area below the free throw line open for cutting (particularly back door cuts) and dribble penetration;
- Opponents “big” defenders may not be as comfortable defending in the high post (this again emphasizes the need with junior players to teach all players both post and perimeter skills);
- It is relatively easier to reverse the ball when there is a high post player, as the high post can relieve defensive pressure on perimeter players.
Some elements of the high post offence are set out below. These particularly utilize “turn out” cuts.