OSU men's basketball: Gottlieb likes the potential

2014-06-25T21:05:00Z 2014-06-25T22:25:45Z OSU men's basketball: Gottlieb likes the potentialBy JESSE SOWA, Corvallis Gazette-Times Corvallis Gazette Times

I sat down with Oregon State men's basketball assistant coach Gregg Gottlieb on Wednesday for my story on OSU's three new assistants.

Here are some tidbits from Gottlieb that didn't make it into the story.

When asked about the opportunity at Oregon State, Gottlieb noted the "clean, immaculate campus" and the many new buildings, including the OSU Basketball Center.

"The key is somebody else has done a lot of heavy lifting and we’re going to benefit from it," he said. 

Gottlieb talked about head coach Wayne Tinkle's positive energy, demeanor and ability to interact with people.

All four of the program's coaches (Tinkle, Gottlieb, Kerry Rupp and Stephen Thompson) are living in the same Corvallis hotel near campus until their families arrive later in the summer. Gottlieb says that has helped the staff get to know each other.

"We all get along well. We like each other. There’s a respect there. We’ve enjoyed each other’s company," Gottlieb said. "The fact that our families aren’t here right now has helped us get to know each other really well in a short period of time."

On recruiting to Oregon State: "This school has a tremendous amount of potential. The fact that the league (Pac-12) is good only helps us right now. Kids want to play in this league, and our job right now is to try and get in the top half. You get in the top half, you have a great chance to get into the NCAA tournament. When you get in the NCAA tournament, anything can happen. You do it once, then all of a sudden you’re always in that conversation."

On the Oregon State school pride he's noticed in his short time on campus: "Everyone wears orange around here."

More on recruiting and the perceived challenge of getting athletes to Corvallis: "I don’t look at it as a negative. When you’re not close to a lot of players you have to work at it. It’s the same thing when I was at Cal ... it’s not easy to get kids there all the time. They’ve got a thousand things going on. I think that’s the same wherever you are. That’s going to be our task, getting kids on campus.

"Starting with Oregon kids, starting with kids in the Northwest in general and then branching out ...

"Honestly, they’ve had some talented kids here. You’ve got to find the right combination of guys and then you have to teach them how to play together and how to win. Those are the things that we’ve all talked about."

On working with Tinkle: "The first time you’re with him and you walk away and you’re like, 'I like that guy.' You know what, that’s what kids think, and their parents and their coaches when they meet him. You have to try and take advantage of that."

On moving forward: "I think there’s a tremendous amount of potential. That being said, do we have a long way to go? We’ve got a long way to go. But it’s pretty darn fulfilling when you reach that potential."

Sports reporter Jesse Sowa can be reached at 541-758-9565 or jesse.sowa@lee.net. Follow him on Twitter @JesseSowaGT

Copyright 2015 Corvallis Gazette Times. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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