Accountability in Your Basketball Practices

Accountability in Your Basketball Practices

This basketball coaching article was written by Kyle Getter, an assistant men’s basketball coach at Liberty University. 


As basketball coaches, we all want to hold our players accountable in practice and games, both defensively and offensively. There is an old saying that “you play as you practice.” Therefore we are constantly working on developing good habits every day in basketball practice so that they will carry over to us executing in the game.

This leads to the question of how do you work toward developing these habits consistently? In my experience, it often is not enough to tell a guy to stop turning the ball over or to stop allowing the middle drive in practice. You have to put something on it.

There must be consequences if they fail to do what you demand. Whether it is running sprints, pushing a sled, or a point competition, there must be consequences to not executing.

To help build our habits consistently, we started having a practice long competition called “50/50.” Mike Jones, our Head Coach at Radford University, came up with the basketball drill, and since we have implemented it into our practices, we have seen our execution improve.

We have found that this method of accountability works better because peer pressure comes into play. Each individual’s actions affect the entire basketball team, and everyone is paying for mistakes, not just the person committing the mistakes.

Here is how the drill works. You have 2 teams and start the competition with each team having 50 points. Then throughout practice, every live drill will be scored based on the “50/50” scoring system. All point totals can be more or less points, and categories can change depending on what you want to emphasize with your basketball team that particular day.

It is a running score, and at the end of practice, the losing team owes running sprints. We usually have 3 down and back sprints (9 seconds each) and a 30-second sprint (foul line, ½ ct, opposite foul line, and full-court) as the penalty for losing. Below is an example of our “50/50” scoring system.


Offensive Points

  • Off. Reb = +2
  • 2/3 = +2/+3
  • Perfect Execution = +2
  • No Execution = -3
  • Turnover = -5
  • No Talk = -2
  • Common Foul = +1
  • Shooting Foul = +2/+3

Defensive Points

  • Deflection = +2
  • Charge = +5
  • Middle Drive = -3
  • Show N Go = +2
  • Launching Pad and Seal Down = +4
  • No Talk = -5
  • Team Block-Out = +2


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5 Responses

  1. I’m a student manager at Niagara and I love this! It keeps a competitive edge within players and forces them to constantly play hard!

  2. Hi I’m from Dakar Senegal, I’m learning coaching by your website and I like this kind of training because it offers to players a good mind in a game.

  3. Sad in India coaches waste students time and most of the time students are waiting for a Ball ..Poor planning and facilities effects the quality of the Game prevailing..

  4. Nice concept, but unless you have student assistants/managers, this is difficult. The H.S. coach that is in the gym alone with with his players is most likely not going to take/have the time to do this during the course of a practice.

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