Robert Guster is in his seventh season as an assistant coach at UTSA, where he assists with recruiting duties, academics and scheduling in addition to on-the-floor coaching duties.
In his six years in the Alamo City, UTSA has registered the school’s first-ever NCAA postseason victory in any sport, captured one league championship, made two conference tournament title game appearances and recorded the most successful four-year stretch (76 wins) in two decades. Twenty school records have fallen under his watch, while eight players have earned all-conference honors, three have been tabbed Southland Freshman of the Year (Devin Gibson, 2008; Melvin Johnson III, 2010; Jeromie Hill, 2011) and six have garnered Southland All-Academic Team accolades, including three Southland Student-Athlete of the Year honorees.
Last season, Guster helped guide UTSA to an 18-14 record and its fifth consecutive berth in the Southland Conference Tournament. The Roadrunners recorded a 10-6 league ledger, their most conference wins since 2004-05, which resulted in a third-place finish in the West Division. Hill was tabbed Southland Student-Athlete of the Year and second-team all-conference and NABC All-District 23, while Johnson III and Kannon Burrage earned third-team and honorable mention accolades, respectively.
The 2010-11 campaign arguably was the most successful in 20 years. He helped lead UTSA to the Southland Conference Tournament Championship for the first time since 2004 and to the program’s fourth NCAA Tournament appearance, where it registered the first NCAA postseason victory in any sport in the department’s 30-year history with a 70-61 first-round victory over Alabama State during the First Four on March 16 in Dayton, Ohio. That win gave UTSA its first 20-win season in 19 years. The Roadrunners recorded their second consecutive 4-1 start — a school record — and their fourth straight 4-0 start at home. UTSA tied for third in the Southland West Division and fifth overall to qualify for its fourth straight Southland Tournament, where it upset the top three seeds en route to the crown. Top-ranked Ohio State ended the Roadrunners’ season at 20-14 with a 75-46 setback in the NCAA Second Round in Cleveland.
In 2009-10, UTSA opened with a 4-0 overall record for the first time in school history and got off to the best 15-game start in school annals with a 12-3 mark. That stretch included a historic road win at Iowa — the Hawkeyes’ first home-opening loss since 1962 and first season-opening defeat since 1978. The Roadrunners finished 19-11 overall and tied for third in the Southland Conference West Division and fifth overall with a 9-7 league mark. UTSA won a school-record 10 non-conference contests, including a UTSA-best seven victories against Division I opponents, and advanced to the Southland Tournament for the third consecutive year.
In 2008-09, the Roadrunners posted a 19-13 record, including an 8-8 league ledger. It marked the most overall wins since the 2003-04 team also won 19 games. In its second straight Southland Tournament appearance, the Roadrunners upended Sam Houston State and Nicholls en route to making the program’s first championship game in six seasons.
In his second season, UTSA tied for third place in the Southland Conference West Division and tied for sixth in the overall league standings with a 7-9 record, making a return to the Southland Tournament for the first time since 2006.
In his first year on campus, UTSA set school records for fewest field goals allowed in a season (649), fewest field goals allowed in a game (13, San Diego, Nov. 26, 2006) and lowest field goal percentage by an opponent (24.5%, San Diego). UTSA also finished second in the Southland in scoring defense (66.3 ppg).
Guster came to UTSA from Southeast Missouri State in Cape Girardeau, Mo., where he served as an assistant coach under head coach Gary Garner. While at SEMO, he was heavily involved in the Redhawks’ recruiting efforts and also oversaw the program’s academic affairs.
Prior to his two-year stint at SEMO, Guster was an assistant coach for five seasons at Missouri State-West Plains Community College under head coach Tom Barr from 1999-2004. During his time at West Plains, the Grizzlies posted a 120-36 record. Ten of the players that he directly recruited signed to play NCAA Division I basketball.
Top players during Guster’s tenure at West Plains included NJCAA All-Americans Jason Detrick, who played in the Final Four with Oklahoma, Tevoris Thompson, who made a junior college record 29 3-pointers in a two-game span, and Terrell Everett, an All-Big 12 player at Oklahoma.
Also a standout player, Guster spent two seasons as the starting point guard at West Plains before moving on to a two-year career as the starter at Missouri-Rolla. He led Missouri-Rolla in assists both seasons and also led the MIAA Conference in assists-to-turnovers ratio. The Miners posted back-to-back winning seasons in his two years.
A native of West Monroe, La., Guster earned his bachelor’s degree in history from Missouri-Rolla in 1999. He received his master’s degree in elementary education from Missouri State in 2002.
He and his wife, Melissa, have one daughter, Alivia, and a son, Shiloh.
The Robert Guster File
· 2006-present: Assistant Coach, UTSA
· 2004-06: Assistant Coach, Southeast Missouri State
· 1999-2004: Assistant Coach, Missouri State-West Plains Community College
· 1997-99: Missouri-Rolla
· 1995-97: Misouri State-West Plains CC
· 1992-95: West Monroe (La.) High School
· Earned a master's degree in elementary education from Missouri State in 2002
· Received a bachelor’s degree in history from Missouri-Rolla in 1999
· Earned an associate’s degree in general studies from Missouri State-West Plains Community College in 1997
· Wife: Melissa
· Daughter: Alivia
· Son: Shiloh