- Associated Press - Monday, August 29, 2011

SAN DIEGO (AP) - San Diego State basketball coach Steve Fisher has been given a four-year contract extension and long-time assistant Brian Dutcher has been designated as his eventual replacement, a person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the Aztecs hadn’t announced the deal. The school called an afternoon press conference Monday for what it said was a “major announcement.”

When reached by phone, Fisher said he had been asked by a school publicist not to comment.

Fisher, 66, has turned what had been a sad-sack program into a consistent winner. The Aztecs had a breakthrough season in 2010-11. They set a school record by going 34-3, secured their first two wins ever in the NCAA tournament and were ranked in the AP Top 25 for the first time.

The Aztecs reached the West regionals before losing to eventual national champion Connecticut. It was their sixth straight 20-win season, and seventh in 12 years under Fisher.

Fisher will have a big job trying to keep the Aztecs playing at a high level after losing four starters. Point guard D.J. Gay and forwards Malcolm Thomas and Billy White were seniors, and star sophomore forward Kawhi Leonard left for the NBA draft. Additionally, center Brian Carlwell was denied a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA.

The San Diego Union-Tribune first reported that Dutcher has been designated as Fisher’s eventual replacement.

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