Steve Fisher: Reflections of a 'teacher-slash-coach'

Legendary Aztecs hoops coach Steve Fisher recalls his time as a high school math educator, and calls for more young people to enter the teaching profession.

Sunday, March 17, 2024
Former SDSU Head Coach Steve Fisher (SDSU)
Throughout his college basketball coaching journey, Steve Fisher considered coaching as an extension of his teaching career.

Long before Steve Fisher was synonymous with San Diego State University men's basketball, his journey began in an unlikely place.

The legendary coach, who guided the Aztecs from obscurity to national prominence during his tenure from 1999-2017, started his career as a self-styled "teacher-slash-coach" at Rich East High School in the Chicago suburbs.

Fisher recently sat down with the College of Education to discuss his experiences teaching math and driver education and how it shaped his path. He also discussed the critical need for more young people to consider a career in teaching. 

"They help shape who you're going to be, who you are," Fisher said. "You want those folks to be caring, driven, passionate and good — and we need more of them. I'm a champion for adding to the quality of this profession."

Learn more about SDSU's teaching credential pathways at

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