Nine-person pepper may sound intimidating, but Oregon State Head Coach Mark Barnard breaks down how players rotate in sequence to keep the pepper rally going.
To run the drill, the court is separated into four quadrants: both sides of the net have two quadrants (which are split by the center of the court). Each group of three occupies a quadrant and one quadrant is always empty.
Two players in each group are on at a time. The off player rotates on when the group moves to a new quadrant. Groups move counterclockwise to the next quadrant after completing a dig, set, and hit over the net (or dig, set, and set over the net depending on skill level).
If run correctly, the ball should alternate being hit angle and line over the net. The pattern of the ball’s movement will look like a bow tie and there should always be a group on the other side of the net waiting to play the ball.