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Three Steps to Winning the Rebounding Battle

In two of the three seasons as a full member of the NAIA, Lindenwood – Belleville has been the #1 team in NAIA Division I in total rebounds.  We believe that rebounding is an essential part of success.  We also believe that it’s one of most underrated statistics in both scouting and recruiting.  In order to build a successful rebounding team, we believe you must continually focus on the following areas:

Anticipation – Knowing when the shot is going to take place based on the surrounding elements and quickly considering where it is taking place from.  Successful anticipation allows the rebounding secure positioning.  Like any skill, this must be drilled. 


Positioning – If one anticipates properly, they will have the opportunity to secure good positioning.  The most important aspect of positioning is to convince your players that rebounding has nothing to do with jumping.  In fact, we drill rebounding in practice daily and do not allow the players to jump.  This forces them to anticipate the shot, run to a spot, and gain position.  We know they will jump in the game and we consider that an added bonus.  Like anything, in order to teach this successfully, the players must understand that it’s a priority.  We chart rebounds in practice and post them in the locker room so the players understand the value. 


Recruiting – Everyone wants a player that can shoot, or drive, or block shots, or rack up assists, but fewer coaches focus on rebounding in recruiting than should.  In my opinion, aggression and toughness are the hardest things to teach. Many players just have it or don’t, it’s hard to develop.  While we can certainly teach anticipation and we can teach positioning, it takes a certain type of player to execute those two things and still be able to grab the rebound in traffic and take the subsequent contact.  We specifically look for players that rebound the ball with two hands in traffic.  This sounds elementary, but a player that is willing to take hits to the mid-section and can still hold onto the ball is tough, and rebounding takes toughness.  Because we value it, we heavily consider rebounding statistics in recruiting for both guards and posts.  


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