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San Diego State Basketball Coach Steve Fisher Discusses Career, Retirement

San Diego State basketball coach Steve Fisher talks with guard Jeremy Hemsley, rear, during the first half of a game against Kansas on Dec. 22, 2015, in San Diego.
Associated Press
San Diego State basketball coach Steve Fisher talks with guard Jeremy Hemsley, rear, during the first half of a game against Kansas on Dec. 22, 2015, in San Diego.
San Diego State Basketball Coach Steve Fisher Discusses Career, Retirement
San Diego State Basketball Coach Steve Fisher Discusses Career, Retirement GUEST: Steve Fisher, former head coach, San Diego State University men's basketball team

It was announcement that took people by surprise. Last week the basketball coach Steve Fisher announced he was ending at your career as both teacher and coach. He passed on the reins of the Aztecs to the assistant coach. During his years at SDSU men's basketball and from a fruitless struggle to a thing of beauty. Even though he says he has not lost his enthusiasm for coaching Mojo it was the right time to leave. Joining me is Steve such Steve Fisher welcome to the program. Last week your announcement seemed like it came out of the blue. How long have you been thinking about retiring I'm 72 now open at San Diego State 18 years. You referenced 50 years as a teacher and as a coach. I know that I could go on for another two or three or four more years with energy and enthusiasm about a grandson who is 3 1/2 ago about Mark who has ALS and will continue to coach. All of these things factor and. I have never done it like the Lone Ranger. Anime -- the consultation of both her sons where the consultation with GLA go. I want to take you back to when he started coaching at SDSU in 1999 it was after an already successful career in Michigan. The first year he coach the Aztecs they won only five games. What did you think you have gotten yourself into. I was not wet behind the ears. It is 54 years old when I came here and had a long coaching teaching career prior to that. I looked at the facilities and I looked at that time what was Cox Arena. I said to myself why not. Why not be able to create an environment and a program that we can be proud of and to be honest a little bit like recruiting when we tell moms and dads and kids to close your eyes and dream and we hope at the end of the day when you graduate it will be better than what we are telling you is it turned out better when I closed my eyes and dreamed I knew we could do some things but it has been better than I dreamed about. There has been a lot written about how your coaching but the Aztecs from obscurity to mount West titles. What do you think turned it around. I had tickets in every pocket. I knew that we needed help in terms of ask about players so we recruited hard and smart and got a little bit lucky in recruiting and one brick on top of another we had a program. He will continue working in what capacity? To be determined. As we stand here today I'm not 100% certain. Want to be involved in anything I can do to help I don't want to be in the way but I think I bring value and a whole lot of areas. We tell you something that has been floated around. There's an idea that you may be involved in SDSU wanting to develop the QUALCOMM Stadium the needle public face as sort of a point person. Would you be interested in being that person. I have not been approached. I don't want people to take sides. To be honest with you I am not as up to speed on everything that is involved. I've read the paper and I've heard in the told John David Victor and our President whatever I do to be of assistance. That is on the table and that lends itself to a whole laundry list of things and I haven't been approached on that and I don't know that they would want me involved in anything like that. The basketball team is bound to go through changes as the years go on. For instance there's debate going on about whether to change the team name Aztecs. What other changes do you think may be coming down the pike the basketball. The head coach in waiting since 2011 -- he and I have and joined at the hip in terms of coaching with one another since 1988 both assistance together back in Michigan. He stopped everything that a coach does he will put his own stamp on what he does. We hope that we can go from where we are to get back there. The last climb up the top of the mountain is the hardest we have done a good job of sustaining and said what can we do. From a sweet 16 to a final four. I've been speaking with basketball coach Steve to show. Thank you for speaking with us and thank you for all of your great work. Thank you my pleasure to be with you.

The era of Steve Fisher as head coach of San Diego State’s men’s basketball team is over.

After leading the team for 18 seasons, Fisher announced his retirement last week.

Fisher, 72, is credited with transforming the men’s basketball program and putting the team on the national stage.

When he took over the program in 1999, the team had won just four games the previous season.

Under Fisher, San Diego State made eight NCAA tournament appearances and won 10 Mountain West conference titles.

Fisher discussed his career at San Diego State and future plans, Thursday on Midday Edition.