About the coach...

Coach Rusty Blair



In his tenure as head coach Rusty has turned Cuesta College into a force in the state.  He was named to lead the men's basketball program in June, 1992.  In 1997, he led Cuesta College to its finest season ever, a 33-5 record and it’s only CCCAA State Finals appearance.  He has led Cuesta to eleven 20-win seasons, ten Western State Conference titles and sixteen playoff berths in his twenty-four seasons as head coach.  He was the WSC Coach of the Year in 1997, 1998, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2015.  Rusty has placed 89 of his student/athletes with scholarships at four-year colleges and universities, including 29 at the NCAA D-1 level.

Rusty came to Cuesta and took over the reins of the basketball program following an extensive playing and coaching career. A 1968 graduate of San Luis Obispo High School, where he was California State High School basketball player of the year and 1st team All American.  He attended the University of Oregon, where he was a three-year starter for the Ducks.  He played professionally for 12 seasons in Europe beginning in 1972 and returned briefly to the United States to serve as an assistant coach at Cal Poly SLO.  He returned to Europe to play full-time in Belgium and Holland from 1977 until 1985. He averaged 27.2 points and 10.4 rebounds as a professional and in 1984-85 hit a Dutch record 95% of his free throws. 
During the 1978-79 season, Rusty led Europe in scoring with 38.5 points per game.  Rusty coached several teams in Europe and while coaching in Holland's top professional league in 1989 led his team to within one game of the final eight of the European Championships. He received Coach of the Year honors.

Rusty earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Oregon and his Master's and teaching credential from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

He and his wife, Kaatje, have two children, Casey and Kelly.  They live in San Luis Obispo. His daughter Kelly and his son Casey were both all-conference basketball players at Cuesta.