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The heart of San Domenico’s family: Mike Fulton

Max Preps

If you go to San Domenico, chances are you’ve heard of Mike Fulton. Mike Fulton is a basketball coach, mentor, and vital member of the San Domenico community. This is his 18th and final year at San Domenico. Before working at San Domenico, he was the head Branson girls coach, leading them to back to back state championships. He started working at San Domenico in 2006 as a part time P.E. teacher for middle school. In 2007, he was hired full time in the hopes he could build the basketball program, which he has. He has exceeded expectations, leading the girls varsity team to the state championships two times in a row. He was later hired to be part of the resident faculty and lived at San Domenico working with boarding students full time.

Fulton has many strong bonds with the people with whom he works. Dave Levine, the varsity assistant coach who coaches alongside Fulton, has known him since he was a child.

“I’ve known coach for many, many years, I met him when I was a kid,” Levine said.“I would meet up with Mike and his dad, Larry, in Hildas. We would go on Saturday mornings and have breakfast, and then we would go to the Fairfax pavilion and workout … shooting [baskets], playing two on two, three on three. Those were some of my happiest days.” 

Levine isn’t the only person Fulton has made an impact on. He has shifted the entire San Domenico community. Mina Swaim, one of his varsity players, has been coached by Fulton for six years. She describes how he is the one who inspired her love for basketball. 

“He really made me understand how important it is not only to give it your all when you’re on the court, but also, give it all to the people that you play with,” Swaim said. “So the coaches are my family; teammates are my family…” 

Fulton has had many accomplishments in his lifetime. He was inducted into the College of Marin Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2015. His knowledge of basketball is significant, which makes him a very observant and attentive coach, building great teams. 

“He’s really good at observing what’s going on and making an adjustment based on what he sees, as opposed to going into a situation with an idea of what he wants to do. He’s really good at just kind of making an adjustment on the fly,” Levine said about Fulton’s coaching strategies. 

“Coach will get upset, but he won’t walk away when he’s angry. He’ll talk through it and tell you exactly what you did wrong and how you can fix it instead of walking away and just shaking his head,” Swaim said. 

The reason Fulton is so successful is his approach to the game. He really cares about the players and only wants them to get better. In my experience of having him as a coach, he has only ever supported me and tried his best to help me along the way. 

Coach Fulton has always treated his players and colleagues like family for as long as he has been at San Domenico. 

“The kids and people I work with are just some of the best people I’ve ever been around,,” Fulton said. “It’s just amazing, like it’s a family out here.” 

Not only has Fulton made an impact on San Domenico, but San Domenico has made an impact on Fulton. He lived on campus for eight years with his father, Larry Fulton, before he sadly passed away. San Domenico is like a home to him.

“I feel everyone [at San Domenico] is like a part of my family. And I don’t think you get that in a lot of high schools,” Fulton said. “I’ve been at some really good schools and colleges, and I guess this is by far the best place I’ve ever been.”

One thing is for sure, Fulton will be dearly missed next year when he leaves San Domenico, but he will always be a part of the family. And the people he has impacted will always be grateful for him. 

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About the Contributor
Delaney Whaley
Delaney Whaley, Sports Editor
Delaney is a sophomore at San Domenico School. She is a contributor of The Panther Press. She enjoys playing basketball, listening to music, and hanging out with friends.

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