Every night in the Gottlieb household, the dinner conversation turned to one of two things - court cases or sports. In a family of lawyers, the former was bound to happen. For one person, however, the interest was certainly in the latter. So, instead of following in the footsteps already created by her family, Lindsay Gottlieb decided to create her own path and venture into the world of sports. So far, it's been an excellent choice. "I majored in political science and as intellectually interesting as it was, I didn't want to sit in a law office everyday," Gottlieb said. "My mind was constantly on sports." Having been part of four successful women's basketball programs in her previous stops, Gottlieb hardly missed a beat in continuing that success in her first season at UC Santa Barbara. In her first season, 2008-09, Gottlieb led the Gauchos to a 22-10 overall record, a 15-1 mark in the Big West and an NCAA Tournament appearance. She was named Big West Coach of the Year, leading the Gauchos to the regular season and tournament championships. Gottlieb was the first-ever coach at UCSB to win 20 games in her first season and became one of only seven active coaches nationwide to win 20 games in her first year and also win Coach of the Year honors. Other firsts for Gottlieb included becoming the first coach in UCSB history to win her first 11 conference games and the first coach in school annals to finish her inaugural season with a winning record. Gottlieb led the Gauchos to their 18th consecutive winning season and the team won at least 20 games for the 12th time in the past 14 years. Under her tutelage, UCSB ranked in the nation's top-10 in field goal percentage defense and the top-20 in points allowed per game, while setting a school record in free throw percentage. Formerly the Associate Head Coach at Cal, Gottlieb became the first coach at UCSB not named Mark French since the 1986-87 season and just the fourth coach in program history. Gottlieb came to Santa Barbara after spending her previous three seasons as an integral part of the Golden Bears' staff, where she helped guide the team to an overall record of 68-28 (.708) over that span, helping turn around a previously moribund program that had suffered through 13 consecutive losing seasons before her arrival. In her first year as associate head coach under Joanne Boyle in the 2007-2008 season, Gottlieb helped Cal register an impressive 27-7 mark, which set a school record for wins. The Bears earned a third consecutive NCAA Tournament berth and advanced to the second round before being upset by George Washington, 55-53. "It was about creating a culture of excellence," Gottlieb says of Cal's transformation. "We were eighth in the Pac-10 when we got there. By the end of last season, we were eighth in the country." The Scarsdale, N.Y. native worked with all aspects of the program during her tenure at Cal, including recruiting and scouting and served as the team's academic liaison. Gottlieb was an integral part of the development of the Golden Bears' post players and worked extensively with Devanei Hampton and Ashley Walker, who were both named State Farm/WBCA honorable mention All-Americans in 2007-08. Cal posted its first winning season in 13 years in Gottlieb's first year on the staff in 2005-06 and the Bears qualified for the Big Dance for the first time since 1993. In 2006-07, Gottlieb helped Cal to an overall record of 23-9 and the Bears earned another bid to the NCAA Tournament after posting their best-ever Pac-10 finish at 12-6. Prior to her arrival at Cal, Gottlieb was an assistant coach under Boyle for three seasons at the University of Richmond, where she helped lead the Spiders to three straight 20-win seasons and a postseason appearance each year. In 2004-05 Richmond finished with a 23-8 overall record and earned the program's first NCAA Tournament berth in 14 years. The Spiders qualified for the WNIT in 2003 and 2004. In her time at Richmond, Gottlieb coached former Santa Barbara High School standout Araceli Gil, now the director of operations for the UCSB women's basketball team. Before joining the staff at Richmond, Gottlieb served as an assistant coach at New Hampshire in 2001-02, under head coach Sue Johnson, which is where she met Kelly Barsky, now one of the Gauchos' assistant coaches. She was also an assistant coach for two years at Syracuse alongside Marianna Freeman and obtained additional coaching expertise with the Westchester Basketball Association AAU program and Kutsher's Sports Academy. While at Syracuse, Gottlieb earned her master's degree in philosophy of education. Gottlieb's playing career consisted of three seasons at Brown - where she graduated in 1999 with a bachelor's degree in political science - and one year in Australia when she was a junior studying abroad at the University of New South Wales. After playing for Brown she was a student assistant coach during the 1998-99 campaign and received the Team Heart and Soul Award in 1999. "I knew I was ready to be a head coach, but I wasn't going to just go anywhere," Gottlieb said. "I was in a great situation at Cal, but UCSB was the right fit for me. I was attracted to four main factors. "One, academics. No coach can guarantee wins, but I can guarantee that my players here will receive a tremendous education. "Two, location. Life doesn't get much better than it is in Santa Barbara. "Three, there is a winning tradition here. With the community support and administrative backing we have, this is one of the country's best spots to play women's basketball. "Four, there's an even higher level we can get to and that excites and motivates me."