Cavaliers' Lindsay Gottlieb Agrees on Contract to Become USC WCBB HC

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMay 10, 2021

FILE - In this March 23, 2019, file photo, California head coach Lindsay Gottlieb instructs her team in the first half of a first round women's college basketball game in the NCAA Tournament, in Waco, Texas. The Cavaliers have hired former California coach Lindsay Gottlieb as an assistant on John Beilein’s staff. Gottlieb joins Beilein’s staff after serving eight years as the University of California, Berkeley women's basketball head coach, where she led the Golden Bears to a combined 179-89 (.668) record (86-58, .597 in Pac-12) since taking over the helm in 2011-12.  (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)
Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

The USC women's basketball program announced Monday that it has hired Cleveland Cavaliers assistant Lindsay Gottlieb to be the team's next head coach.

USC Women's Basketball @USCWBB

💥We got GOTT! 💥 The Trojan Family is extremely excited to announce the hiring of new women’s basketball head coach Lindsay Gottlieb! Welcome to Troy, coach! #FightOn ✌️ https://t.co/M7ZNX5gCpG

USC Trojans @USC_Athletics

New @USCWBB head coach Lindsay Gottlieb has distinguished herself not only by leading Cal to the Pac-12 title and Final Four but as a pioneer for female coaches in the NBA. https://t.co/eQl9VrPYs9

Per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Gottlieb is signing a six-year contract with the school.

Gottlieb took to social media to show her appreciation for the city of Cleveland:

Lindsay Gottlieb @CoachLindsayG

Cleveland- you accepted me with open arms and my relationships with the city, my guys on the team, and the organization will be with me forever. I cannot thank you enough. https://t.co/VpWZ5DHTLO

Gottlieb, 43, will return to the college game after two seasons on J.B. Bickerstaff's staff in Cleveland (she was originally hired by John Beilein, though he lasted less than a season as head coach), where she "played a role in everything," per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

That included "game preparation and player development with the Cavs' strong young core of Jarrett Allen, Collin Sexton, Darius Garland and Isaac Okoro."

Previously, she served as the head coach at UC Santa Barbara (2008-11) and Cal (2011-19). She won two Big West championships, a Pac-12 regular-season championship, led Cal to the Final Four in 2013 and led her teams to seven NCAA tournament appearances.

Per Woj, Gottlieb made the decision to return to the college ranks "after an aggressive USC pursuit to bring her back to the Pac-12 Conference, including a massive upgrade in program salary and resources with hopes of restoring USC to the elite of women's college basketball."

Chris Fedor @ChrisFedor

USC had been aggressively pursuing #Cavs assistant coach Lindsay Gottlieb for quite some time now. She was set on staying in Cleveland. The NBA is where she wanted to be. But USC kept making offers and she couldn’t turn it down.

She'll have her work cut out for her at USC—the team went just 11-12 last season and hasn't made an NCAA tournament since the 2013-14 campaign. In the past 24 seasons, the USC women's basketball team has made the tourney just three times.