Someday, if not already, we will start referring to Viejas Arena as the house that Fisher built. His record of high profile athletic accomplishments may be considered unrivaled on Montezuma Mesa, especially at his home in the Aztec Bowl.
But, like so many things at San Diego State University, ΣΑΕ’s can take solace in the fact that one of our own played a small, he maintains microscopic, early part in that hallowed tale.
The year was 1972 and a few years before the Aztecs football team had left historic Aztec Bowl to play their games in Jack Murphy Stadium (i.e. Qualcomm). With their departure, Aztecs shops general manager Harvey Goodfriend had an idea – to build an arena for basketball and other events in its place. Harvey approached Mike Boyle (CA-TH ‘72) suggesting he write a paper on the matter. In Boyle’s humble words, he simply wrote what Harvey and a design professional told him to write, and the idea was placed on paper. Boyle takes zero credit for the arena, deferring to Goodfriend (already largely responsible for our original Aztec Center student union) a visionary who conceived the idea of an arena and (along with others who labored to complete the design, funding and construction) actually made it happen. But it’s a fun tale showing the engagement of our order with everyday life in San Diego as well as the mentoring and encouragement that our students have received from quality educators and staff. Decades later in 1997 Goodfriend saw that Boyle was invited to the arena’s opening.
Boyle’s selection as author of the paper was no accident. He was a student leader, having been elected to the post of Associated Student Vice President in the fall of 1970, but ascending to the Presidency one semester later when his predecessor left his post to join the Marine Corps. Later, Boyle himself joined the Army National Guard and served as an intern for the SDSU Dean of Student Affairs following his return from active duty training.