When Lisa Ryckbosch took over the helm for the UIC women's basketball team in 2002, the Chicago native was ready to make school history and turn the Flames into a Horizon League contender.
In just eight years, Ryckbosch finds herself as the winningest coach in UIC program history (114-123 .481). She has tallied 114 wins and guided the squad to first-ever postseason appearance at the WNIT in 2007.
Ryckbosch has also steered the Flames to their first-ever Horizon League Tournament title game (2005), first-ever vote in the Associated Press Top 25 poll (Nov. 2002) and highest-ever Horizon League finish (2nd - 2003, 2006).
She has developed 17 all-league performers during her tenure with those players helping UIC set single-season team records in most points scored (2,184, 2006-07), three-pointers made (200, 2005-06), most steals (344, 2002-03) most assists (492, 2006-07) and consecutive victories (11, 2006-07).
The Flames also broke the school record for most wins in a season (19, 2006-07).
After a record breaking season in 2007-08, Ryckbosch and the Flames experienced an rebuilding year in 2008-09. Jessie Miller did reach the 1,000 career-point mark in 2008-09, and a pair of Flames in Shamia Green and Jasmine Bailey earned spots on the Horizon League's All-Newcomer Team, boding well for the future.
In 2007-08, Ryckbosch watched her hard work pay off as seniors LaShonda Grant, Krystal Hugelier and Jacquay Holmes each hit the 1,000 career-point plateau.
Ryckbosch has built UIC into a successful program by attracting top student-athletes.
Her extensive knowledge of the Windy City, has allowed her to lay down the recruiting groundwork to keep the top recruits from the talent-rich Chicagoland area close to home.
Ryckbosch enjoyed a great start to her UIC head coaching career as the Flames posted 17 wins in 200
2-03, which was the second-most in school history and the most victories since the 1995-96 campaign. The team also tied the school-record for Horizon League wins with 11 during her rookie campaign, on the way to the Flames' first-ever second-place conference finish in 2002-03.
Ryckbosch came to UIC after spending 11 seasons on the coaching staff at DePaul University, where she served most recently as associate head coach under Doug Bruno. She had been instrumental in bringing top Chicagoland and national talent to the Blue Demons' successful women's basketball program, including five players that competed in the WNBA.
While at DePaul, Ryckbosch helped guide the Blue Demons to five NCAA Tournament appearances and three WNIT berths. DePaul owned a record of 186-140 during her tenure, while winning a pair of Great Midwest Conference titles (1989; 1991) and the first-ever Conference USA regular-season championship in 1996.
Prior to her stint with the Blue Demons, Ryckbosch, ironically, got her collegiate coaching start as a member of the UIC staff in 1990-91, serving under then-head coach Eileen McMahon.
Ryckbosch began her coaching career at Hillcrest High School in Country Club Hills, Ill., where she served as the Head Girls' Varsity Basketball Coach and a math teacher for three years.
A standout collegiate athlete at Loyola (Ill.), Ryckbosch was a four-year starter and two-time team captain for the Ramblers from 1980-84 and still ranks fourth on the school's all-time scoring (1,296) and rebounding (765) charts. She played an instrumental role in leading Loyola to a school-record 23 wins and the inaugural North Star Championship - now the Horizon League - in 1984.
Ryckbosch is married with two children. Her husband Bart, a native of Belgium, is the Archivist at the Art Institute of Chicago.
Ryckbosch's oldest son, Steven, is entering his fourth year at Georgetown University, while Peter is in high school at St. Ignatius Prep School just down the street from the Flames Athletic Center.
The Ryckbosch family makes their residence in the Old Irving neighborhood on Chicago's North Side.