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Switching Players' Positions In-Season

Posted by CoachHouser on Aug 17, 2008 10:26:50 AM

Coach Houser:

No one has really stepped up as MB2. Therefore, I'm thinking of using my taller girl to play right when we play a team with strong OH's, yet playing her at MB when our opponents have strong MB's. I don't think you would prefer this. But why? It sounds great to me!


There are reasons that I don't switch my players too much.


We all know how hard it is to play MB! But let's look at the right side players's just as tough a position to play!



Your rights must:

a) be ready to set when the setter takes the first ball. That'll take a while to learn.

b) Then they must decent at setting, which may take longer!

c) When they move to the back row, most coaches require them to set when the setter take the first hit. The back row pass is very delicate (takes practice!!) and she must be quick enough to cover behind the MB and the setter, not only on tips, but also on unexpected 1-balls and setter dumps.



Another reason I'm hesitant to move players around is the following. My priorities in coaching high school ball are:

1) passing & serve reception

2) serving

3) setting

4) bonding

5) playing offense & defense (the reason why I don't switch kids a lot!!)

6) hitting

7) digging

8) conditioning

9) blocking.



Of course your conference may be tougher, so blocking may be a higher priority. But I've discovered that if my team passes better, and the setting is good, then we hit more. More hitting makes our opponents dig/scramble/run, which lessons the need for us to be a good blocking team!! YES!! In addition, if we're serving to location well, and maybe serving some bombs and some short, then that will lesson our need to block also!!



See, a lot of teams believe blocking is a huge issue, but many of those teams can't hit well and don't serve well! Those coaches don't realize that if they did 1 thru 8 better, blocking wouldn't be anywhere near as critical!


I understand what you're saying about no one has stepped up yet. But if i were you, I'd be getting antsy about ensuring that my players completely understood their positions (priority 5)!! Therefore, I'd commit someone as MB2 asap, commit someone else as the right asap, then teach them and teach them and teach them those positions so our offense & defense would run smoothly.


If you discover in a week or month from now that you didn't make the best choice for MB2, then oh oh. Now, hurry, hurry and try a different combination. But unfortunately, now you have even less time to ensure that priority (5) is taken care of.



WARNING: After you make a switch, don't teach those girls their positions while the other girls are standing around picking their noses. That's more time wasted!! Use stations to catch up a player who's lost.......the reason they're lost doesn't matter........just don't teach 1 girl this, another girl that, another girl this, while others are standing their bored. The director of your station can be an assistant coach or a senior who understands the position!



Tom Houser

Six summer camps in Va, Pa & Delaware have been completed!! They were incredible!

For info about a site camp in 2009, please visit me at



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