Steve Fisher

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For other people named Steve Fisher, see Steve Fisher (disambiguation).
Steve Fisher
Steve Fisher in 2009.jpg
Fisher in 2009
Sport(s) Basketball
Current position
Title Head coach
Team San Diego State
Record 312–176 (.639)
Biographical details
Born (1945-03-24) March 24, 1945 (age 69)
Herrin, Illinois
Playing career
1965–1967 Illinois State
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1971–1979
1979–1982
1982–1989
1989–1997
1998–1999
1999–present
Rich East HS
Western Michigan (asst.)
Michigan (asst.)
Michigan
Sacramento Kings (asst.)
San Diego State
Head coaching record
Overall 502–257 (.661)
Accomplishments and honors
Championships
NCAA Division I Tournament Championship (1989)
NCAA Division I Tournament Runner Up (1992)*
NCAA Division I Tournament Runner Up (1993)*
NIT Tournament Championship (1997)
MWC Tournament Championship (2002, 2006, 2010, 2011)
MWC Regular Season Championship (2006, 2011, 2014)
*vacated
Awards
Naismith College Coach of the Year (2011)
NABC Coach of the Year (2011)
Wooden Legends of Coaching Award (2015)

Stephen Louis "Steve" Fisher (born March 24, 1945)[1][2] is an American basketball coach who is currently employed as the men's basketball coach at San Diego State University in San Diego, California. Fisher also has served as the head coach at the University of Michigan, where he won the national championship in 1989, and was an assistant at Michigan, Western Michigan University, and the Sacramento Kings of the National Basketball Association.

Fisher attended Illinois State University, where he helped lead the Redbirds to the 1967 Division II Final Four.

University of Michigan[edit]

Fisher moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1982 and took an assistant job at the University of Michigan after having assistant coached at at Western Michigan University since 1979. In 1989, during the final week of the regular season, Michigan head coach Bill Frieder agreed to take the coaching job at Arizona State University beginning the next season. Though Frieder intended to coach Michigan through the end of the 1989 NCAA tournament and told athletic director Bo Schembechler that he would stay to coach the team in the tournament, Schembechler responded, "The hell you will!" He immediately fired Frieder and announced that Fisher would be promoted to replace him. When announcing the promotion of Fisher, Schembechler famously said, "I don't want someone from Arizona State coaching the Michigan team. A Michigan man is going to coach Michigan."[3]

Initially, Fisher was not expected to retain the position after the season. However, Fisher led the Wolverines to an improbable NCAA championship that season, thanks to a strong performance by forward Glen Rice. Schembechler hired him as the school's permanent head coach a week after the championship game. Michigan credits the 1988–89 regular season to Frieder and the NCAA tournament to Fisher.

The next two seasons of the Fisher era were struggles. However, In 1991 Fisher signed the most talented incoming freshman class of all time. High school stars Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, Ray Jackson, Jimmy King, and Juwan Howard all signed with Fisher and Michigan, forming what became known as the "Fab Five". Together, they helped lead the Wolverines to the national title game in their freshman year, only to lose to Duke. As sophomores, they again reached the title game, this time losing to North Carolina. In that game, Webber was called for a technical foul with 11 seconds remaining in the game when he signaled for a timeout when the Wolverines had none left.

After the title-game loss to the Tar Heels, Webber went pro; Rose and Howard followed after an elite eight loss to the eventual National Champion Arkansas Razorbacks. The Wolverines would not reach the same heights until 2013, although they reached the postseason each of the next five seasons and won the 1997 National Invitation Tournament.

In October 1997, Michigan fired Fisher as a result of an off-court scandal (see section below).

Fisher was out of coaching for the 1997–98 season before taking a job as an assistant with the Sacramento Kings.

In 1999, Fisher took over as coach of a San Diego State program that had suffered losing records in 13 of the previous 14 years. In the season before he arrived, the Aztecs had won just four games, but within two seasons Fisher had brought the team up to a .500 record, and led them to a 21–12 record and an NCAA Tournament appearance in year three of his regime. He has since led them to five other NCAA tourneys, and four appearances in the National Invitational Tournament.

Ed Martin scandal[edit]

In 1997, after it was revealed that Maurice Taylor had visited Ed Martin, a retired Ford electrician, the school launched an investigation. After the investigators questioned Fisher's role in arranging complimentary tickets for Martin, Fisher was fired a week before practice began for the 1997–98 season.

Later, additional facts surfaced that further damaged the program's reputation. In 2002, an indictment unsealed in a Detroit federal court charged Ed Martin with running an illegal gambling operation and money laundering. Additionally, it claimed that Martin gave Webber $280,000 in illicit loans while Webber was in high school and college, with another $336,000 allegedly going to three other former Wolverine players – Taylor, Robert Traylor and Louis Bullock. Martin ultimately pleaded guilty, but died in February 2003.

As a result of the revelations, Michigan imposed its own sanctions on the basketball program in 2002, vacating its two Final Four games from the 1992 NCAA Tournament and its standing as the tournament's runner-up. It also vacated the entire 1992–93 season, as well as every game from 1995–96 to 1998–99. Michigan also withdrew from postseason consideration for the 2002–03 season, and removed the banners hanging in Crisler Arena that commemorated their post-season appearances and removed references to the named players' records. The move came because the payments may have compromised the four players' amateur status. The NCAA accepted Michigan's sanctions, and additionally placed the school on probation until 2006. It also ordered Michigan to disassociate itself from the four players until 2013.

The discoveries did not impact Fisher's career with San Diego State (and no new allegations have occurred in conjunction with that program). Fisher denied any knowledge of the Martin misconduct. The NCAA ultimately faulted Fisher for allowing Martin access to his players (though his ties to Michigan dated to the Frieder era), but otherwise cleared him of wrongdoing.[4]

San Diego State[edit]

In 1999, Fisher took over the basketball program at San Diego State University. The Aztecs had not been to the postseason since its NCAA appearance in 1984–1985.

In his third year, Fisher led the Aztecs to their first Mountain West Conference tournament title, and finished with a 21–12 record and continued the upward surge of the program. They returned to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since that same '84–85 team. During the 2002–2003 season (his fourth year), Steve Fisher's Aztecs returned to the post-season when they hosted an NIT First round match against UCSB. The Aztecs earned their first ever Division 1 post-season win. After two rebuilding seasons (2003–2004 and 2004–2005), the Aztecs returned to the NCAA Tournament in the 2005–2006 season; Steve Fisher's seventh season. That year the Aztecs began a present seven year streak of consecutive 20+ win seasons while capturing their first ever Mountain West Conference Regular Season Championship, and winning their second ever Mountain West Conference Tournament Championship.

In 2009, the Aztecs earned a school-record 26 victories and reached the semifinals of the NIT. It was their third consecutive trip to the NIT, and fourth consecutive post-season appearance. In the 2009–2010 season, the Aztecs won another 20+ games, won the Mountain West Conference Tournament, and earned their third NCAA Tournament trip under Fisher. In 2010–2011, the Aztecs who were ranked #25 in the pre-season AP poll, was ranked #4 late in the season, the school's highest ever ranking. SDSU even received three first place votes in the Coaches' Poll at one point. They spent nearly the entire season in the top 10 and won their first NCAA Tournament game ever en route to the Sweet 16. SDSU set a school record in 2010–11 season with 34 wins. They had 3 total losses, the first 2 against Sweet 16 team BYU (who they went on to beat in MWC Tournament Championship game) and their 3rd loss going against future NCAA Tournament winner UConn.

Overall Fisher has guided SDSU to the NCAA Tournament in 2002, 2006, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 and the postseason NIT in 2003, 2007, 2008, and 2009, to go along with nine 20-win seasons (eight consecutive from 2006–present). Additionally, under Fisher, the Aztecs have won or shared three MWC regular season titles (2006 outright, 2011 shared with BYU, 2012 shared with New Mexico), and won four MWC tournaments (2002, 2006, 2010, 2011). Since the 2005–2006 season, Steve Fisher has led the Aztecs to eight consecutive post-season appearances, including three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances—the first time the Aztecs have done this as a Division I team.

Just ten head coaches have won the NIT as well as the NCAA tournaments. The others are Nat Holman (who did it in the same year), John Calipari, Vadal Peterson, Nolan Richardson, Bobby Knight, Adolph Rupp, Joe B. Hall, Al McGuire, Dean Smith, and Jim Calhoun.

Steve Fisher won his 300th game as Head Coach of the San Diego State Aztecs Men's Basketball Program on January 31, 2014 in a game against Colorado State University. "It's not me, it's we…", remarked Coach Fisher.

Head coaching record[edit]

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Michigan (Big Ten Conference) (1989–1997)
*1988–89 Michigan 6–0 NCAA Champions
1989–90 Michigan 23–8 12–6 3rd NCAA Second Round
1990–91 Michigan 14–15 7–11 8th NIT First Round
^1991–92 Michigan 25–9 11–7 T–3rd NCAA Runner-up
^^1992–93 Michigan 31–5 15–3 2nd NCAA Runner-up
1993–94 Michigan 24–8 13–5 2nd NCAA Elite Eight
1994–95 Michigan 17–14 11–7 T–3rd NCAA First Round
^^1995–96 Michigan 21–11 10–8 T–5th NCAA First Round
^^1996–97 Michigan 24–11 9–9 T–6th NIT Champions
Michigan: 185–81 (.695) 88–56 (.611)
San Diego State (Mountain West Conference) (1999–present)
1999–00 San Diego State 5–23 0–14 8th
2000–01 San Diego State 14–14 4–10 7th
2001–02 San Diego State 21–12 7–7 T–4th NCAA First Round
2002–03 San Diego State 16–14 6–8 5th NIT Second Round
2003–04 San Diego State 14–16 5–9 T–5th
2004–05 San Diego State 11–18 4–10 6th
2005–06 San Diego State 24–9 13–3 1st NCAA First Round
2006–07 San Diego State 22–11 10–6 T–3rd NIT Second Round
2007–08 San Diego State 20–13 9–7 4th NIT First Round
2008–09 San Diego State 26–10 11–5 4th NIT Semifinals
2009–10 San Diego State 25–9 11–5 T–3rd NCAA First Round
2010–11 San Diego State 34–3 14–2 T–1st NCAA Sweet 16
2011–12 San Diego State 26–8 10–4 T-1st NCAA Second Round
2012–13 San Diego State 23–11 9–7 4th NCAA Third Round
2013–14 San Diego State 31–5 16–2 1st NCAA Sweet 16
2014-15 San Diego State 6-1 0-0
San Diego State: 318–177 (.642) 129–99 (.566)
Total: 503–258 (.661)

      National champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

*Fisher served as interim coach during the 1989 NCAA tournament after Bill Frieder resigned. Michigan credits the 1988–89 regular season to Frieder and the NCAA tournament to Fisher.

^Michigan vacated its two 1992 Final Four games and its status as tournament runner-up. Official record is 24–8.

^^Entire season, including postseason tournament appearances, later vacated by the school.

Michigan total record includes games subsequently vacated by the school.

Notable players coached[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Jarrett - Fisher". The Jackson Sun. June 19, 2011. Retrieved March 28, 2014.  This is a wedding announcement for Mark Fisher, son of Steve Fisher. "The future groom is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Louis Fisher."
  2. ^ "2011-12 San Diego State Men's Basketball Media Guide". San Diego State University. p. 33. Retrieved March 28, 2014. Steve Fisher was born March 24, 1945. 
  3. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/1989/03/16/sports/frieder-is-dropped-for-taking-a-new-job.html
  4. ^ http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/print?id=1551150&type=columnist