A volleyball coach posed a question about a decision they are making with respect to where to position their libero. In this case it is considered from the perspective of who takes the second ball if the setter plays the first.
I am toying with the idea of moving the Libero to middle back. This way my outside/ds can hand set the ball to a hitter while in front of the attack line. Has anyone made the switch who would like to report on their level of success with this? My biggest hesitation is the statistical fact that most outside hitters hit the ball cross court most of the time. Therefore, having the Libero in that position (left back) seems to make the most sense. Just weighing which would serve the team better.
If I were speaking to this coach on the subject, I would ask a few of questions.
- How many first balls do you expect the setter to take?
- How many of those setter digs end up in front of the 3m line?
- Are your OHs’ hands much better than your libero’s bump set?
- How much difference is there in the digging ability of your libero and your OHs?
Another consideration in here is the defensive strengths of the players involved. By that I mean certain types of players are more oriented toward playing forward. That tends to suit playing defense in 5. Other types of players are better moving laterally. This suits playing in 6 when in a standard perimeter defense system. See also the Libero in 5 or 6? post.
And of course there’s the question of offense. Would having the setter taking the second ball negatively impact the team’s ability to score in transition?
For a bit more of an expansive discussion have a look at Thoughts on second contact when setter-out.
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