Corey Fisher is one of the many basketball players who began playing basketball in the playgrounds of New York City. Fisher was born in the Bronx (like 2011 NCAA Tournament Star Kemba Walker), and played his high school basketball for the famous St. Patrick’s High School in Elizabeth, New Jersey. As a senior, Fisher was named New Jersey Player of he Year by the Newark Star Ledger, and led his team an outstanding 30-2 record.
Fisher decided to play his college basketball for Jay Wright and the Villanova Wildcats. He played right away, averaging 9.1 points and 2.7 assists in 34 games (21 starts) in his freshman campaign. He improved his statistics his sophomore year, 2008-09, averaging 10.8 points and 2.8 assists per game. Fisher was named Big East’s Sixth Man of the Year for his efforts.
In addition to personal improvement, the team as a whole improved. Led by senior forward Dante Cunningham and junior guard Scottie Reynolds, the Wildcats reached the Final Four for the first time since their 1985 National Championship. While they lost 83-69 in the semifinals to eventual champion North Carolina, it was still Villanova’s most successful season in over two decades.
As a junior, Fisher took on more of a leadership role. He formed a dynamic backcourt with Reynolds, and averaged 13.3 points and 3.9 assists per game. In addition, Fisher became the 52nd player in Villanova history to amass 1,000 points is his college career, and was named to both the all Philadelphia Big 5 (1st team) as well as All Big East (3rd team) teams. The Wildcats finished the season 24-7 and earned a 2 seed in the NCAA tournament. Unfortunately, their tournament ended prematurely, as they were bounced by St. Mary’s in the second round.
Fisher returned for his senior year (surprise! Not everyone leaves early), and now shared the backcourt with sophomore Maalik Wayns. Once again, Fisher improved his scoring and assist numbers, averaging 15.6 points and 4.8 assists in his final season in college. His excellent season earned him the recognition of being one of the ten finalists for the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation’s best point guard.
Once again, Villanova made the NCAA Tournament, but like the previous year, they were eliminated early (a 61-57 loss to George Mason in the Round of 64).
Like his teammate Reynolds the year before, Fisher went undrafted in then 2011 Draft. He played one year for Antalya BB in Turkey, and now currently plays for Joventut Badalona in Spain. According to teammate Manny Quezada, the team calls Fisher “Rat Face”.
Even though he played for Villanova, a rival of my Syracuse Orange, I appreciate how Fisher continues to represent my hometown of Bronx, NY (even if it’s a different part of the borough from where I live). Despite playing across the Atlantic Ocean, the Bronx is featured in his Twitter handle. Thank you Corey Fisher for trying to teach the world that there’s more to this borough than just the Yankees.