Last year, Jeff Saturday left ESPN for a head coaching gig with the Indianapolis Colts. This year, it could be Doug Gottlieb leaving Fox Sports Radio for a job in college basketball.
Gottlieb has been in the mix for college jobs before, notably interviewing for the coaching vacancy at his alma mater, Oklahoma State, in 2017, one day after he was introduced at Fox Sports. Now six years into his tenure at Fox Sports after being denied the job with Oklahoma State, Gottlieb recently interviewed for the head coaching job at Wisconsin-Green Bay, a process he discussed on his All Ball podcast.
“I got a chance to talk to (Wisconsin-Green Bay AD) Josh Moon several times during the year after they had made their coaching job available,” Gottlieb said. “And my approach to how I’ve done these things — and this is not the first time I’ve gone down the path, but this was a different path. Because it was a low-major, mid-major sort of job, because there wasn’t a direct tie or connection.
“I have told people, that for the right job, the radio element to it, for the right thing, I would give it up. The podcast, I’m not giving it up. I love doing this and I do think there’s a very smart world where if I’m coaching I can still do this pod specifically, and do it with coaches and basketball people all over the world, all over the country.”
Gottlieb said over the course of the last month he worked on putting together a coaching staff, but as it turns out, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Phoenix men’s basketball team was not a job worth leaving radio for.
Wisconsin-Green Bay fired men’s basketball coach Will Ryan in January. After a coaching search that included Gottlieb, the university named former Wyoming assistant Sundance Wicks as its next head coach last week. During his podcast, Gottlieb stated he told the school he wouldn’t give up his Fox Sports Radio show for the job, which makes sense. Wisconsin-Green Bay probably doesn’t have the finances to make leaving a nationally syndicated radio show worthwhile, whereas a job like Oklahoma State does. However, it similarly makes sense that Wisconsin-Green Bay might prefer a coach who doesn’t have another full-time job.
“The radio piece for me, is a great promotion for what I’m doing as a coach,” Gottlieb said. “It is in the middle of your day, you do have to have a great staff and I was prepared to take less money than other coaches would, probably than Sundance took. I was going to use that money for a higher-level staff, and a higher level of competent staff mates, so that in my three-hour recording window, I was able to do my pod and do my radio show and not have to worry about what was going on.”
Gottlieb has no college coaching experience, but during the podcast, he did tout the various AAU teams he coaches, telling Wisconsin-Green Bay, “It doesn’t matter who you hire, I’ve coached more games than them in the last three years than they’ve coached their entire career.” The Fox Sports Radio host also coached the U.S. men’s basketball team to a gold medal at the Maccabiah Games in 2017 and 2022.
“That’s what I want to do,” Gottlieb said of coaching in college. “And last year when I was coaching in Israel, that also continued to invigorate or reinvigorate that light on in your soul that this is something I would really like to do. But it has to be the right thing. It has to be the right AD and you have to hit the right notes with the right message.”
Gottlieb was told he was a finalist for the role at Wisconsin-Green Bay but was never offered the job.