Anthony Fish: Warren Football Coach By Day, Police Officer By Night< < Back to
On Friday nights, Warren’s first-year head coach Anthony Fish can be seen on the Warrior sideline wearing a freshly ironed white, button-down dress shirt with an electric-blue tie dancing around in the fall breeze.
The game day attire sported by Fish, however, is not one that he has worn for very long and certainly isn’t the only uniform he has had in the last two decades of his life.
In fact, being the varsity football coach of the Warren Warriors only scratches the surface of Fish’s identity.
Aside from his coaching duties, Fish had previously served five years in the United States Army, where he was deployed four times on missions for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
One of these missions included Fish being assigned to the security detail of former President George W. Bush. During this mission, Fish and his team were designated to protect President Bush’s house in Crawford, Texas.
“[Homeland Security] has given me a whole different aspect in which to look at the world,” Fish said. “It really just opens things up and makes me see things a little different than what the average citizen does.”
After spending half of the last decade with the U.S. Army, Fish returned to southeast Ohio and accepted a coaching position with the Alexander Spartans while also working on the Athens city police force.
And his time with the Spartans paid off as this past offseason Fish accepted an offer to become the new head coach for Warren. When he accepted the job, Fish vowed to remain on the police force in Athens where he has worked since 1995.
“I get to help people everyday and what other profession can you do that in?” he said.
Fish believes that his job with the police helps him view the world in a unique way, a way that he wouldn’t have without his involvement in law enforcement.
“I’ve seen a lot of stuff. A lot of pain, a lot of misery and a lot of death and I try not to dwell on that,” he said. “I’ve seen a lot of good stuff too. Hopefully at the end of the day you come home and it’s been one of those where you’ve gotten to help people or have seen people on the good side.”
The act of balancing police work with being the coach of a high school football team has not been easy for Fish, and he believes that coaching is much closer to a full-time job than what most people would expect.
“It’s been something that I’ve had to work through,” Fish said. “I’ve had to learn how to manage home life stuff, work life and the coaching stuff.”
But despite the stress that comes with being a coach, Fish wouldn’t want it any other way because he not only enjoys his work outside of football but also embraces the idea of being a positive role model for his players.
In a time where positive influences are few and far between and kids are looking up to questionable figures, the Warriors don’t have to look too hard to find one.
The reason—they have one on the field everyday— they have a man that leads them into battle every Friday night and helps guide them off the gridiron. They also have someone to shape them into young men with high morals and strong character because Fish believes that it’s his responsibility.
“I have to be that guy that doesn’t break the rules or cross the line and I think the kids nowadays need to see that,” he said. “So many of their role models and heroes they look up to either push the envelope or just outright don’t have rules that they live by and they need to see people that do live by the rules everyday.”
As a man that has been shaped by his career with the Army and police force, Fish is accepting a new challenge every time he steps on to the gridiron. With a new position and a new team, this former national guardsman has a whole new outlook on what it means to be a leader.