Bob Schlosser is a nationally known expert on basketball’s flex offense, a fact of little everyday utility since he retired from coaching in 2017.
He has found a new way to use it, though, to help a former player, fellow coach and friend.
Kyle Conrad, the second-year head coach at Governor Mifflin High School, played for Schlosser at Elizabethtown College from 2001-05, including a three-year stretch in which the Blue Jays went 65-21, won three straight Commonwealth Conference championships and, in ‘02, reached the NCAA Division III national championship game.
Conrad has been diagnosed with cancer and underwent surgery last month. Schlosser is conducting a coaches’ clinic on the flex from noon-4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22 at Thompson Gym on the E-town campus. All proceeds go to Conrad’s treatment.
“It’s not like it’s going to be a ton of money,’’ said Schlosser, who expects at least 40-50 coaches and former players to attend. “But, Kyle has a family, he has young kids, … everything helps.’’
Schlosser coached for 40 years, at Marian Catholic (Tamaqua) and Allentown Central Catholic High Schools, and then at E-town from 1990-2017.
He learned the flex, an offensive pattern featuring baseline screens and elbow jumpers, from Brian Hill, the former Orlando Magic coach, at a clinic at Lehigh University soon after Marian Catholic hired Schlosser.
From his second year at Marian Catholic through ‘17, Schlosser ran the flex every year, drilling its nuances at every practice, adding endless variations, counters and counters-to-counters.
“We got good at it because we did nothing but,’’ he said.
In ‘02, the national-final season, Schlosser and an E-town student did a videotape on the flex, as the student’s senior project in video production.
Soon after that Schlosser connected with Championship Productions, a company known for coaching videos in all sports. Championship Productions spruced the video up and put it out there as a Comprehensive Guide to the Flex Offense (“Order now and open looks are guaranteed.”).
At one point the video was sixth in the country in sales of instructional coaching videos, alongside tapes by Mike Krzyzewski and other household names.
“We sold a lot of them,’’ Schlosser said. “I still get royalty checks.’’
In recent years, the flex has fallen a bit out of favor as ball-screen and dribble-drive-style offenses came in vogue.
Very recently, though, NBA coaches have started using, if not the full-blown flex continuity, flex sets designed to lead to pick-and-rolls or isolations for go-to offensive players.
“It’s cyclical,’’ Schlosser said. “I’ve had a lot of coaches reach out to me lately, which started me thinking I could do something.’’
The clinic is $75, plus $20 for additional members of the same coaching staff. Attendees may pay at the door, but should pre-register by email at firstname.lastname@example.org