How are you training your inbounder? (Human Player)

I have a feeling that some teams will overlook the help of the inbounders during the match. Last year, we had the human players throwing the tubes over the wall to return the tubes closer to your rack, saving time from retrieving from the wall. Some teams were well prepared for this, training their human players (such as myself) to throw them as far as possible. Others overlooked this convenience and quite perhaps could only pick up tubes from the wall.

Thus, this raises questions about the significance of the inbounder on your team. Is your team doing anything special to train your inbounder for the competitions? What’s the strategy you’re going with in terms of returning basketballs? Does your inbounder serve a significant purpose in terms of helping during the match, apart from returning the basketballs to the field?

Seeing the difficulty in feeding the ball where you want it, it would be difficult to be as effective as the human players in, say, lunacy. There has been much talk of full-court shots in the last 20 seconds which was confirmed in the Q&A, I believe. The ideal strategy would be to train your human player to release the ball such that it bounces over the bump/bridge, if there are no defense bots available.

Do you know how difficult it is to accurately throw the ball over the wall in the endgame? I have practiced a bit with great success (scoring a number of baskets in the 3-point one) but with underhand throwing and with a makeshift wall - people standing in front of me with their arms up. lol
I’m not too sure whether the inbounder’s baskets count towards the score, and whether it is possible to get the basket over the wall is throwing underhand. Although, being able to bounce the basketballs over the bump does save quite a lot of time to maximize scoring.

we have our human players “shoot” half court shots to help them practice their accuracy for the last 30 seconds.
its fun watching them make them-since its rare, but they do improve a lot after a couple hours.

We’re lucky enough to have room for a full court and have built some baskets and an inbound station. The kids are always throwing on their downtime, and we have a number that are very good. Not quite consistent scorers (though I think one got 3 in a row once), but if you watch them you’re likely to see a basket before you get bored. Sometimes more than one, though not always top hoop. It’s nowhere near as difficult as I was worried it’d be.

On the other hand, while it’s nice to be able to bounce over the bridge/barrier, I wouldn’t count on being able to do it very often. That spot will end up being primo defense territory if you’re good at it. Being able to get it to your alliance robots (hopper or close on the floor) could also be helpful, but requires a lot more flexibility and versatility.

We have recently required a 4-year Varsity Basketball player on our team, and make her practice shots…

I do think it is important for HPs to be trained. I was the Human Player last year and we practiced throwing tubes sooo much, and it actually helped. If you can, it is obviously going to be an advantage to have your Human Players as practiced as possible, just by bouncing balls in or throwing them over and into hoops.

Our human player practices throwing the ball around alot but the most important thing is she thoroughly understands the rules. Whats the point of hitting some prayer shot if your human player is accumulating a ton of penalty points beforehand?
Rarely does the human player factor into the game enough to decide the outcome (2004, 2009) but they can certainly cost you victories with their Stupid Human Player Tricks which I have witnessed time after time after time at the many events I have traveled. Some of the errors were stunning and inexcusable.
The human player who stood outside the driver station with the trident in 2010 and collected balls while a ref watched and issued him penalty after penalty after penalty until he got tired of doing it and went up to the kid and nudged him back into the station. The analyst who during a match was coaching his human player on their side of the field and was told by a ref to go back to his side of the field (but did not bother to penalize him) to which he responded to this order by standing to the side of the field and watch the match until I told him to go back to his side of the field. The analyst who was sent back to his pit by his team right before a match started because they had nothing for him to do. In 2006 the far too numerous human players who would uselessly toss balls away when it wasn’t their scoring period and my all time favorite the human player who after placing the bot on the field stood over by the judges and watched the match unaware that he was supposed to stay within the lines.
The training of Human Players is a tell tale sign of a good team vs. a bad team in my book. Good teams explore every detail to ensure victory. Bad teams have tunnel vision and ignore details they do not see as important (build the robot over training the Human Player who they must assume will train themselves or their role is irrelevant and thus does not merit training). Training the human player is the easiest thing to do as all it requires is reading the official FIRST rules. There really is no reason or excuse for poor human player performance when all it takes is simply reading the rules.

To clarify, I would like to also add that

  1. Our inbounder is extremely well-versed in the rules, and is probably the best rules person on our team.
  2. The points do count.
  3. You cannot make those shots during regular teleop, and you’ll need something for the shooters to do with the ball seeing that they’re throwing into enemy territory.
  4. I’m not saying that we’ve abandoned training, I just believe that it will not have as big of an impact other than morale (making the buzzer beater) or penalties from inexperience, which is rather easy to counter on our side of things.

Does playing with the Kinect count as training? If so, we’ll have a human player trained.

Actually, I never thought of it from that perspective, so actually, yes, it very much does. I personally consider them more of a driver than a human player, but that’s just me.

Our HP will go to the gym over breaks and try for ~54 shots. Currently he can make 4/15.

just so you know a half court shot is about 15 or more feet short of the field. and me being the human player that extra few feet make a difference in your throw.

As it’s been mentioned, there are three things a HP needs to do.

  1. Know the rules, very critical. they can’t be causing unnecessary fouls.

  2. Be able to bounce the balls over the bump.

  3. Have the strength to go for Hail Mary shots at the last 30 seconds.

How many HP’s do you train? I hold tryouts, for our drive team and then rotate them during competition. This keeps it fair, and people don’t get worked up if they screw up or something.

How long is the human player shot to the basket? Just the linear number please, i don’t need the hypotenuse/shortest path. (in other words, ignoring height of the goal.)

56’ ish.

Good luck with the Hail Mary shots in the last 30 seconds. You’re throwing balls that the other team has already scored, with very little chance of scoring any points in return.

There’s a reason that the human players on Einstein in 2009 were feeding their alliance robots instead of trying to score themselves … :wink:

Unfortunately, i believe most teams have overlooked some items of very high importance. Throwing over the wall is good for 30 secs. In-bounding through the slot is good for 2 minutes. Training your hp to be able to in-bounding half-court to full-court shots is much more effective and a much better and more effective way of training an in-bounder.

We have trained our hp to be able to get 8-10 over the bridge. You have no real need to practice throwing the balls over the wall because anyone could do that. It is also a very limited time frame where you would only throw around 2-3 balls if your lucky. If your good at in-bounding throughout the match you could in-bound 6-8 or even more balls depending on the opposing alliance.

There are two ways that i have deduced that will achieve greatest probability of getting the half to full court in-bound. The two-hand on each side doing a bounce off the bottom of the slot for more distance. This way gives you much more control for less distance. The other is the one hand side ways toss. Kind of like football throwing styles. You toss if sideways through the slot. This way gives you much more distance and power for less control of the ball.

Many people will disagree and continue to practice overhand throwing(or underhand). But i believe that a hp that is able to get balls over the bump and bridge during the match will be better than any hp who can throw one 3-point shot in the last 30 secs.

If the human player throws cross court and misses then the ball is on the correct side of the field, near the goal and presumably near scoring robots, even on Einstein you will likely see teams shooting with <30seconds to go.

Well, of course you have to get it to through the slot. That’s a given, but those last 30 seconds, throwing over is more efficient mainly because you should be able to make it over the half court every time, without a bounce. Whether or not you go for the hail mary is up to your HP at that point.

I know my team is practicing the slot and hail mary’s but the slot being most important. I’m not sure if the “bounce it off the bottom” is the most effective.