New Mexico Lobos men's basketball
The New Mexico Lobos men's basketball team represents the University of New Mexico, competing in the Mountain West Conference in NCAA Division I. UNM established basketball as a varsity sport in 1899 and began competing with regional colleges after establishing an athletics department in 1920. Lobo basketball first achieved national prominence after Bob King was hired as head coach in 1962. King transformed a moribund program into a consistent winner and produced future ABA MVP Mel Daniels; the Lobos won the Western Athletic Conference championship in 1964 and 1968, making frequent appearances in national rankings. The team reached the NIT tournament final in 1964 and received its first bid to the NCAA tournament in 1968; the success of the program continued after King departed, winning WAC titles in 1974, 1978, 1994, winning the conference tournament in 1993 and 1996, earning post-season tournament bids. The Lobos became frequent participants in the NCAA tournament during the 1990s and have made fifteen appearances overall, as well as nineteen NIT appearances.
They have won the conference tournament four times each. In addition to Daniels, other prominent players produced by the Lobo program include five-time NBA champion Michael Cooper, three-time NBA champion Luc Longley, NBA all-star Danny Granger, Kenny Thomas; the most renowned enduring feature of the Lobo basketball program is its home venue, known as "The Pit", recognized as one of the best college basketball arenas in the country. The Pit opened in 1966 and the Lobos have been dominant playing there, winning over eighty percent of their games, while placing among national leaders in attendance; the arena has hosted NCAA tournament games, including the 1983 NCAA Final Four that featured one of the most memorable finishes in tournament history. Roy Johnson, nicknamed "Old Iron Head", was fundamental to the early development of Lobo athletics. Johnson arrived in 1920 after a successful athletic career at the University of Michigan; the UNM gymnasium at the time was a small wooden building where the walls were out-of-bounds markers for basketball games.
Basketball was an intramural sport, with occasional games against other schools, including Albuquerque High School, no regular schedule. Johnson set about building collegiate-level athletics facilities, performing some of the hard labor with his own hands, he oversaw construction of Carlisle Gymnasium in 1928 and Zimmerman Field in 1938, the first football stadium at UNM. During his nearly forty years at UNM, Johnson coached every men's sport the school offered, while teaching physical education. A decorated veteran who served in World Wars I and II, he was the UNM athletic director from 1920-49, he established scheduled games against regional colleges, in 1931 UNM joined the Border Conference as a founding member. Johnson coached the UNM basketball team for all but two seasons from 1920-40. From 1924-34, his teams posted a 104–38 record; the Lobos won 165 games with Johnson as head basketball coach, a school record for over thirty years and third on its all-time list. Johnson stepped down as head basketball coach after the 1939-40 season.
The position passed to a few different coaches before Woody Clements took over from 1944–51 and 1953–55, compiling a record of 113-119. The Lobos won the Border Conference in 1944 and 1945, they appeared in the NAIA post-season tournament in 1947, losing to Hamline University in the first round. From 1951-62, the Lobos competed in the Mountain States Conference, known at the time as the Skyline Eight. In 1957, while still on faculty, Johnson oversaw construction of the 7,800-seat arena that bears his name, Johnson Gymnasium. For many years, Johnson Gym was the most prominent feature of the UNM campus for those driving along Central Avenue in Albuquerque, part of historic U. S. Route 66. Lobo basketball first achieved national prominence under Bob King, an assistant coach at his alma mater, the University of Iowa; the Lobos had only two winning seasons from 1947–62, compiling a 113–252 record, including a dismal 42–149 during the last eight years. King had an immediate impact on the program; the Lobos won as many games in his first two seasons as in the previous seven combined and went 116–44 over his first six seasons.
They went 175–89 in ten seasons with King as head coach, winning two conference titles and making four appearances in post-season tournaments. New Mexico joined the Western Athletic Conference as a founding member before King's first season, his first team went the best Lobo record in seventeen years. The following season, 1963–64, the Lobos won their first WAC championship, led by Ira Harge, who King had recruited from a junior college in Iowa; the team posted wins over Kansas and at Purdue and received a berth in the 1964 National Invitation Tournament at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The Lobos defeated Drake and NYU before falling to Bradley in the championship game, finishing with a 23-6 record and ranked 16th in the UPI poll. Harge averaged 18.8 points and 11.8 rebounds a game during his two seasons at UNM and was selected in the second round of the 1964 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers. The rise of the program continued in the 1964–65 season, led by sophomores Mel Daniels and Ben Monroe.
After an early loss at Kansas, the Lobos won ten straight building a 19-3 record and attaining a #10 national ranking, their first appearance in the AP poll. They dropped their next four games on the road, including a one-point loss at #10 BYU, they were again invited to the NIT, where they lost to St. John's to finish 19-8. Daniels averaged over 17 points and 11 rebounds a game, providing the fast-gr
Utah Utes men's basketball
The Utah Utes men's basketball team represents the University of Utah as an NCAA Division I program that plays in the Pac-12 Conference. They are led by head coach Larry Krystkowiak and play their home games at the Jon M. Huntsman Center; the school has made the NCAA Tournament 27 times, which ranks 20th in NCAA history and tied for third most appearances behind UCLA and the University of Arizona in the Western United States. They last made the tournament in 2016. Utah won the NCAA Championship in 1944, defeating Dartmouth College 42–40 for the school's only NCAA basketball championship. However, the school claims the 1916 AAU National Championship, awarded after winning the AAU national tournament, they have won the NIT once, defeating Kentucky in 1947. In 1998, the Utes played in the NCAA championship game. Utah began play in 1908, finishing with a record of 3–8. However, by 1916, they had won their first national championship, winning the National AAU Tournament; the team would compete in the tournament two other times, in 1918 and 1919.
But it wasn't until 1927 that Utah began laying the foundation for what would become one of the winningest programs in college basketball. That began with the hiring of Vadal Peterson, who would become the winningest coach in Utah basketball history. Peterson would guide Utah to 6 conference and state championships and reached the ultimate prize in 1944, when the Utes won the national championship. Oddly enough, Utah had turned down a bid to the NCAA Tournament because they wanted to play in the NIT. Back the NIT was a far more prestigious tournament and drew the big time college basketball programs. However, after being bounced in the first round by Kentucky, Utah was given a second chance to play in the NCAA Tournament; the Arkansas Razorbacks were forced to withdraw after two of their players were badly injured in a car accident. Needing another team to take the Razorbacks' place, the NCAA invited Utah; the Utes accepted and went on to defeat Dartmouth 42–40. The legendary Arnie Ferrin was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player after scoring 28 points in the final two games.
Three years Peterson would lead Utah to the more prestigious NIT championship, as they defeated enough, Kentucky 49–45. Peterson would retire from Utah with a 385–230 record and is the only coach in Utah history to have won a national championship. After Peterson retired, Utah basketball was known as one of the strongest in the west; that tradition helped convince Kansas State head coach Jack Gardner to accept the job. Gardner had led the Wildcats to two Final Fours prior to accepting the job and during his 18 years at Utah, he built a legacy that many today feel is the strongest in Utah history. Jack Gardner was known for his quick offenses, where Utah got its name as the Runnin' Redskins; because of his radical offensive sets, the Utes were regarded as the team that helped usher in a new era of college basketball. By his second season, Gardner had the Utes in their first NCAA Tournament since the 1945 season and the Utes dominated their way to a conference championship. Finishing the year 24 -- 4, Utah was eliminated in the second round.
In Gardner's third season he once again guided the Utes to a conference championship and an NCAA tournament berth. That year the Utes climbed to 11th in the polls and made it to the Elite Eight, before bowing out to eventual champion San Francisco, led by future NBA legend and Hall of Famer Bill Russell; the Utes kept their postseason streak alive for Gardner's fourth and fifth seasons, making the NIT, they lost in the first round both years. In 1959, Utah again returned to the NCAA Tournament, before losing to Idaho State in the second round; the Utes would make the NCAA Tournament again in 1960, like in'59, were defeated in the second round, this time by USC. After getting eliminated in the second round in consecutive years, Jack Gardner and Utah made a run at the national championship in 1961; that year the Utes finished 23 -- 12 -- 2 in conference play. They were faced Loyola-California in the first round; the Utes won 91–75 and advanced to the Elite Eight, where they defeated Arizona State 88–80, to make the school's first Final Four in 17 years.
There they would face the eventual national champions Cincinnati Bearcats, losing 82–67. Though the season had ended short of the national championship, Utah had returned to the national stage and would prove to be a worthy national foe for years to come. A season after the 1961 Final Four ushered in great change for Utah athletics; the Utes, along with the Arizona, Arizona State, BYU, New Mexico, Wyoming decided to form the Western Athletic Conference. The competitive conference made it far more difficult for the Utes to win, as Gardner struggled in the first three years of the conference's formation. During that span the Utes would go 12–14, 19–9 and 17–9. However, by 1966 Utah was once again ready to make a national splash, after cruising to a conference championship and the program's first tournament berth since the 1961 season during that season. Utah faced Pacific in the semifinals. After a easy 83–74 victory over the Tigers, Utah advanced to the Elite Eight where they would face the Oregon State Beavers.
In a competitive game, the Utes came out on top, defeating the Beavers 70–64 to once again advance to the Final Four. This was a historical achievement for Jack Gardner, because it made him the first, only, coach to guide two different teams to two Final Fours, but it was the cultural significance of this Final Four that would have far reaching historical impact and change the game
Andrew Michael Bogut is an Australian professional basketball player for the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association. The 7-foot center began his career in the National Basketball Association after he was selected by the Milwaukee Bucks with the first overall pick in the 2005 NBA draft, he earned All-NBA Third Team honors with the Bucks in 2010. He was traded to the Golden State Warriors in 2012, was named NBA All-Defensive Second Team in 2015, when he won an NBA championship with the Warriors. Bogut played college basketball for two years with the Utah Utes, earned national player of the year honors in 2005, he declared for the NBA draft, became the first Australian to be the NBA's first overall pick. In his first year with the Bucks, Bogut was named to the NBA All-Rookie First Team in 2006, he earned all-league honors in 2010 after averaging a career-high 15.9 points along with 10.2 rebounds per game. He missed most of 2011 -- 12 with an ankle injury. After winning the NBA Finals in 2015, Bogut helped the Warriors win an NBA-record 73 games in 2015–16.
He was traded to the Dallas Mavericks, where he played before other short stints with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers. In 2018, he returned to his home country to play for the Sydney Kings. Bogut was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1984, his parents and Anne, had immigrated to Australia from Croatia in the 1970s. Bogut grew up playing Australian rules tennis in addition to basketball; as a child, he patterned his basketball game after Toni Kukoč, a Croatian NBA player who spent the majority of the 1990s playing for the Chicago Bulls. As a 15-year-old, he was cut from the Victoria junior state representative team. In response to this setback, Bogut began to improve his game with the help of Siniša Marković, a professional basketball player from Yugoslavia. Bogut's emergence began after he earned a roster spot with the Australian Institute of Sport in 2002, he competed in the South East Australian Basketball League in 2002 and 2003, helping the AIS win the East Conference title in his first season.
He joined the U-19 Australian junior national team, was named the most valuable player of the 2003 FIBA Under-19 World Cup, in Greece, after leading the Emus to the title. In eight games, he averaged 26.3 points, 17 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.5 blocks per game, he shot 61 percent from the field and 74 percent from the free throw line. One of the highlights of his MVP conquest was a 22-point, 18-rebound performance, in a 106–85 win over the US, in the quarter-finals of the medal round; as a freshman at Utah in 2003 -- 04, Bogut averaged 9.9 rebounds in 33 games. He subsequently earned CollegeInsider.com All-Freshman Team honours, Mountain West Conference Freshman of the Year, second-team All-Mountain West Conference, NABC second-team All-District 13. As a sophomore in 2004–05, Bogut started all 35 games for the Utes, leading them to a 29–6 record, the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, a Mountain West Conference championship, he led the nation with 26 double-doubles and scored in double figures in 37 consecutive games dating back to the final two games of the 2003–04 season to have the sixth-longest streak in the country.
He ranked 19th in the NCAA in scoring, second in rebounding and eighth in field goal percentage, led the Mountain West Conference in scoring and field goal percentage. He became one of 31 Utah players all-time to score 1,000 points in his career, but just the third to reach that mark in two seasons, he was named the 2004–05 national player of the year by ESPN.com and Basketball Times, earned Associated Press first-team All-American and leading vote getter, becoming the 11th Ute all-time to earn All-America honours. He earned Naismith College Player of the Year honours and the John R. Wooden Award, he had his No. 4 jersey retired by Utah. Bogut was selected by the Milwaukee Bucks with the first overall pick in the 2005 NBA draft, becoming the first Australian player and the second Utah player to be drafted number one overall; as a rookie in 2005–06, he earned All-Rookie First Team honours and finished third in votes for the NBA Rookie of the Year Award. He played in all 82 regular season games for the Bucks in his first season, averaging 9.4 points and 7.0 rebounds per game.
Bogut's second season in the league was cut short after spraining his left foot and being put on the injured reserve for the final 15 games. He had played in 153 consecutive games, he improved his numbers in 2006 -- 8.8 rebounds per game. In the 2007–08 NBA season, Bogut set career-highs in points, blocks and minutes per game, he tallied a career-high 29 points against the Phoenix Suns in December and finished 9th in the NBA in blocks, 11th in rebounding and 12th in double-doubles. He started in 78 games for the Bucks. Bogut appeared in just 36 games for the Bucks in 2008–09, missing the final 31 games of the season with a stress fracture in his lower back, he faced more time on the sidelines during the 2009–10 season due to a strained ligament and bruise in his left leg. On April 3, 2010, near the end of a breakout season, Bogut suffered a major injury; that night, in a game against the Phoenix Suns at the Bradley Center, Bogut had a chance to score on a fast break attempt. As he went up, Amar'e Stoudemire appeared to make some contact with Bogut and he lost his balance while completing the dunk.
He hung onto the rim for a brief moment to try to right himself but could not, fell at an awkward angle. Placing his right arm out to break the fall
The shooting guard known as the two or off guard, is one of the five traditional positions in a regulation basketball game. A shooting guard's main objective is to steal the ball on defense; some teams ask. A player who can switch between playing shooting guard and small forward is known as a swingman. In the NBA, shooting guards range from 6' 3" to 6' 7" and 5' 9" to 6' 0" in the WNBA; the Basketball Handbook by Lee Rose describes a shooting guard as someone whose primary role is to score points. As the name suggests, most shooting guards are good long-range shooters averaging 35–40 percent from three-point range. Many shooting guards are strong and athletic, have the ability to get inside the paint and drive to the basket. Shooting guards are taller than point guards. Height at the position varies. Shooting guards should be good ball handlers and be able to pass reasonably well, though passing is not their main priority. Since good shooting guards may attract double-teams, they are the team's back-up ball handlers to the point guard and get a fair number of assists.
Shooting guards must be able to score in various ways late in a close game when defenses are tighter. They need to have a good free throw percentage too, to be reliable in close games and to discourage opposing players from fouling; because of the high level of offensive skills shooting guards need, they are a team's primary scoring option, sometimes the offense is built around them. In the NBA, there are some shooting guards referred to as "D" players; the term 3 and D implies that the player is a good 3 point shooter who can play solid defense. The 3 and D player has become important as the game sways to be perimeter oriented. Good shooting guards can play point guard to a certain extent, it is accepted that point guards should have the ball in their hands at most times in the game, but sometimes the shooting guard has a significant enough influence on the team where he or she handles the ball often, to the point where the point guard may be reduced to a backup ball handler or spot-up shooter.
The Basketball Handbook. Lee H. Rose ISBN 0-7360-4906-1 Media related to Shooting guards at Wikimedia Commons
2007–08 NCAA Division I men's basketball season
The 2007–08 NCAA Division I men's basketball season began on November 5, 2007 ended with the 2008 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament's championship game on April 7, 2008, in the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. Behind Mario Chalmers' clutch three-pointer at the end of regulation, the Kansas Jayhawks won an overtime battle against the Memphis Tigers to take their third NCAA tournament title, twenty years after Danny Manning led the Jayhawks to their last championship. Bill Self sheds the title of "best coach never to go to a Final Four" in dramatic fashion. For the first time since teams were seeded for the NCAA Tournament, all four number one seeds advanced to the Final Four. In February, Kelvin Sampson agreed to a buyout and was relieved of his duties as coach of Indiana University following a recruiting scandal concerning impermissible phone calls. Dan Dakich was named interim coach, but the damage had been done as the Hoosiers go 3–4 the rest of the season and bow out to Arkansas in a listless performance in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
After the season, IU hired Marquette coach Tom Crean to tackle the major rebuilding job ahead. Sophomore Stephen Curry put on a shooting display as the Davidson Wildcats upset Gonzaga and Wisconsin - narrowly succumbed to eventual champion Kansas 59–57 - to go to their first Elite Eight since 1969. Curry scored 40, 30, 33 and 25 points in the four games and was named the Midwest Region Most Outstanding Player. North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough and Kansas State's Michael Beasley engaged in a season-long battle for National player of the year honors. Hansbrough swept the POY awards, while Beasley won all Freshman of the Year awards and joined Hansbrough as a unanimous first-team All-American. Memphis flirted with being the first undefeated team since 1976, they started the season 26–0, but on February 23 cross-state rival Tennessee defeated the Tigers 66–62 on Memphis' home floor in a battle of the #1 and #2 teams. The Tigers finished the season 38 -- 2. However, all 38 wins were vacated by the NCAA in 2009, due to an invalid SAT score for star Derrick Rose.
After beating Memphis, Tennessee attained the #1 ranking for the first time in school history. They lost their next game at Vanderbilt; the preseason AP All-American team was named on November 5. Tyler Hansbrough of North Carolina was the leading vote-getter; the rest of the team included Roy Hibbert of Georgetown, Chris Lofton of Tennessee, Drew Neitzel of Michigan State and Darren Collison of UCLA. The Drake Bulldogs — picked in the preseason to finish ninth in the 10-team Missouri Valley Conference — had a dream season, starting 13–0, finishing 28–5 - and were ranked as high as #14 at one point during the season. Drake's charge was led by an unlikely hero — senior point guard Adam Emmenecker, a three-year walk-on who would go on to capture both the MVC's regular-season and tournament Most Valuable Player awards. On February 4, career coaching wins leader Bob Knight retired as head coach of Texas Tech, handing the reins to his son Pat. Knight would reappear as a studio host for ESPN in the postseason.
A severe storm ripped a hole in the Georgia Dome. After game delays and a venue change, the Georgia Bulldogs scored an unlikely championship run that included winning two games in one day. At Arizona, coach Lute Olson took an unexpected leave of absence just prior to the season's start. Kevin O'Neill, assistant coach and supposed Olson successor, was named interim coach. Olson announced he would return for 2008–09 and did not retain O'Neill on his staff as rumors of a disagreement between the two swirled; the first College Basketball Invitational was held, offering a post-season alternative to teams not selected for the NCAA Tournament or NIT. Tulsa defeats Bradley in a best of three series to take the inaugural title. Wake Forest head coach Skip Prosser died at 56 of an apparent heart attack the July before the season began. Assistant Dino Gaudio was named successor and led the Deacons through an emotional year punctuated by an upset of Duke. Lester Hudson of Tennessee-Martin recorded the first-ever quadruple-double in NCAA history.
Against Central Baptist College, Hudson scored 25 points, grabbed 12 rebounds, dished out 10 assists and recorded 10 steals in a 116–74 win. On January 23, Baylor beat Texas A&M 116–110 in five overtimes in the season's longest game. Houston's Rob McKiver scored 52 points in a game against Southern Mississippi to set the single-game scoring high for the season. Stephen Curry broke the NCAA record for three-pointers made in a season, connecting on 162; the previous record had been held by Butler's Darrin Fitzgerald set in 1987. Mike Krzyzewski, Eddie Sutton each won their 800th career games. North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough, Tennessee's Chris Lofton, Vanderbilt's Shan Foster, Virginia's Sean Singletary, Western Kentucky's Courtney Lee, Utah State's Jaycee Carroll, Colorado's Richard Roby, UNC Greensboro's Kyle Hines, High Point's Arizona Reid, Rider's Jason Thompson, Hofstra's Antoine Agudio, New Orleans' Bo McCalebb and VMI's Reggie Williams all eclipsed the career 2000-point mark during the season.
Effective this season, the Mid-Continent Conference changed its name to The Summit League. Presbyterian, Cal State Bakersfield, Florida Gulf Coast, South Carolina Upstate and North Carolina Central, all moved up to Division I competition. Conference realignments: IPFW, North Dakota State and South Dakota State began play in the Summit League, while UC Davis competed in the Big West Conference for the first time. All four programs were independent in 2006–07. Valparaiso began play in the Horizon League after leaving t
Naismith College Player of the Year
The Naismith College Player of the Year is an annual basketball award given by the Atlanta Tipoff Club to the top men's and women's collegiate basketball players. It is named in honor of the inventor of Dr. James Naismith. First awarded to male players in 1969, the award was expanded to include female players in 1983. Annually before the college season begins in November, a "watchlist" consisting of 50 players is chosen by the Atlanta Tipoff Club board of selectors, comprising head coaches and media members from across the United States. By February, the list of nominees is narrowed down to 30 players based on performance. In March, four out of the 30 players are placed in the final ballot; the final winners are selected in April by both the board of selectors and fan voting via text messaging. The winners receive the Naismith Trophy. Since its beginning in 1969, the trophy has been awarded to 23 female players. Lew Alcindor of the University of California, Los Angeles and Anne Donovan of Old Dominion University were the first winners, respectively.
Bill Walton of UCLA and Ralph Sampson of the University of Virginia have been the only men to win this award multiple times, with both winning three times. Eight women in all have won this award multiple times. Cheryl Miller of the University of Southern California and Breanna Stewart of the University of Connecticut are the only three-times winners, while seven others won it twice: Clarissa Davis of the University of Texas, Dawn Staley of the University of Virginia, Chamique Holdsclaw of the University of Tennessee, Diana Taurasi and Maya Moore of the University of Connecticut, Seimone Augustus of Louisiana State University, Brittney Griner of Baylor University. Davis and Moore are the only ones of either sex to have won multiple times in non-consecutive years. Two award winners were born in United States territories: Alfred "Butch" Lee, born in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Tim Duncan, born in the U. S. Virgin Islands; the only three award winners who have been born outside the jurisdiction of the United States were: Andrew Bogut, born in Melbourne, Australia.
Patrick Ewing, born in Kingston, Jamaica. Buddy Hield, born in Freeport, Bahamas. Three of these players were developed at least in the U. S. proper—Lee was raised in Harlem from early childhood, Ewing immigrated to the Boston area at age 12, Hield attended high school in suburban Wichita, Kansas. Duncan did not move to the U. S. proper until he arrived at Wake Forest University, Bogut lived in Australia until his arrival at the University of Utah. Duke has had the most male winners with eight, while Connecticut has had the most female winners, with ten awards won by six individuals; the award has been won by a freshman three times: Kevin Durant playing for Texas in 2007, in 2012 by Anthony Davis of Kentucky and Zion Williamson of Duke in 2019 List of U. S. men's college basketball national player of the year awards Naismith Prep Player of the Year Award Official website
The five basketball positions employed by organized basketball teams are the point guard, the shooting guard, the small forward, the power forward, the center. The point guard is the leader of the team on the court; this position requires substantial ball handling skills and the ability to facilitate the team during a play. The shooting guard, as the name implies, is the best shooter; as well as being capable of shooting from longer distances, this position tends to be the best defender on the team. The small forward has an aggressive approach to the basket when handling the ball; the small forward is known to make cuts to the basket in efforts to get open for shots. The power forward and the center are called the "frontcourt" acting as their team's primary rebounders or shot blockers, or receiving passes to take inside shots; the center is the larger of the two. Only three positions were recognized based on where they played on the court: Guards played outside and away from the hoop and forwards played outside and near the baseline, with the center positioned in the key.
During the 1980s, as team strategy evolved. More specialized roles developed. Team strategy and available personnel, still dictate the positions used by a particular team. For example, the dribble-drive motion offense and the Princeton offense use four interchangeable guards and one center; this set is known as a "four-in and one-out" play scheme. Other combinations are prevalent. Besides the five basic positions, some teams use non-standard or hybrid positions, such as the point forward, a hybrid small forward/point guard; the point guard known as the one, is the team's best ball handler and passer. Therefore, they lead their team in assists and are able to create shots for themselves and their teammates, they are quick and are able to hit shots either outside the three-point line or "in the paint" depending on the player's skill level. Point guards are looked upon as the "floor general" or the "coach on the floor", they should study the game and game film to be able to recognize the weaknesses of the defense, the strengths of their own offense.
They are responsible for directing plays, making the position equivalent to that of quarterback in American football, playmaker in association football, center in ice hockey, or setter in volleyball. Good point guards increase team efficiency and have a high number of assists, they are referred to as dribblers or play-makers. In the NBA, point guards are the shortest players on the team and are 6 feet 4 inches or shorter; the shooting guard is known as the two or the off guard. Along with the small forward, a shooting guard is referred to as a wing because of its use in common positioning tactics; as the name suggests, most shooting guards are prolific from the three-point range. Besides being able to shoot the ball, shooting guards tend to be the best defender on the team, as well as being able to move without the ball to create open looks for themselves; some shooting guards have good ball handling skills creating their own shots off the dribble. A versatile shooting guard will have good passing skills, allowing them to assume point guard responsibilities known as combo guards.
Bigger shooting guards tend to play as small forwards. In the NBA, shooting guards range from 6 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 8 inches; the small forward known as the three, is considered to be the most versatile of the main five basketball positions. Versatility is key for small forwards because of the nature of their role, which resembles that of a shooting guard more than that of a power forward; this is why the small forward and shooting guard positions are interchangeable and referred to as wings. Small forwards have a variety such as quickness and strength inside. One common thread among all kinds of small forwards is an ability to "get to the line" and draw fouls by aggressively attempting plays, lay-ups, or slam dunks; as such, accurate foul shooting is a common skill for small forwards, many of whom record a large portion of their points from the foul line. Besides being able to drive to the basket, they are good shooters from long range; some small forwards have good passing skills, allowing them to assume point guard responsibilities as point forwards.
Small forwards should be able to do a little bit of everything on the court playing roles such as swingmen and defensive specialists. In the NBA, small forwards range from 6 feet 6 inches to 6 feet 9 inches; the power forward known as the four plays a role similar to that of the center, down in the "post" or "low blocks". The power forward is the team's most versatile scorer, being able to score close to the basket while being able to shoot mid-range jump shots from 12 to 18 feet from the basket; some power forwards have become known as stretch fours, since extending their shooting range to three-pointers. On defense, they are required to have the strength to guard bigger players close to the basket and to have the athleticism to guard quick players away from the basket. Most power forwards tend to be more versatile than centers since they can be part of plays and are not always in the low block. In the