Continuing his chalk-talk series, former Ohio State coach Jim Stone covers defensive strategies for down balls and free balls in this video.
After explaining the 2 terms, he talks about what shape defensive players should take when faced with either a free ball or down ball. He also explains how setters should react in certain free-ball situations and what blockers should do in certain down-ball situations.
One big key to making a good play on a down ball, Jim notes, is awareness by the defensive players. For instance, when they see an attacker facing a certain direction, they need to move to the spots where the ball is most likely to go.