By Dan Murphy
SAN DIEGO — The notification that San Diego State was cutting its women’s rowing program was delivered, like most bad news in 2020, in a Zoom meeting.
Madison Fisk sat at a desk in her bedroom in the off-campus house she shared with several teammates in November 2020 and listened to her coach explain that their scholarships — if they had them — would still be honored, but there would be no team for her senior season. There would be no races or regattas, no team bus rides, no 5 a.m. sunrise workouts. She would no longer have the soaring sensation of a boat in rhythm, nothing to launch her pulse into her throat for those few cherished seconds when she stared back at the taut, determined faces of her closest friends and waited for their oars to hit the water.
Fisk was a coxswain in the Aztecs’ top boat, and as such considered herself an extension of their coach on the water.