Santa Clara University alumnus Cameron Rast has led his alma mater to seven NCAA tournaments and five West Coast Conference Championships since taking over the Bronco men’s soccer program in 2002. A former All-America player on Santa Clara's National Championship team of 1989 and U.S. Olympic Team captain in 1992, Rast spent eight seasons as an assistant coach at SCU from 1994-2001.
The 2019 season marks his 18th as the Bronco head coach. Rast has done a remarkable job developing young talent, recently seeing forward Erik Hurtado taken No. 5 overall in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft. Two of his 2011 seniors, Mykell Bates and Brandon Zimmerman were also drafted by MLS clubs. Hurtado - the 2012 WCC Player of the Year - was also named an All-American by the NSCAA and classmate Larry Jackson was honored as the WCC's Goalkeeper of the Year in 2012.
He owns a 166-123-47 career record and is 84-43-28 all-time at SCU’s Stevens Stadium (formerly Buck Shaw Stadium). He is Santa Clara men's soccer's winningest coach passing previous head coach Mitch Murray, 143 wins, in 2015. On May 17, 2006, Santa Clara inducted Rast into its Athletic Hall of Fame.
Rast and his SCU side won its first WCC title since 2010 and his fifth overall during the 2015 campaign. The Broncos lost the conference opener then went unbeaten the rest of the way with one draw and two overtime wins to clinch the title. The squad made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament before falling to eventual champion, Stanford. Rast is currently second all-time in WCC coaching wins with a 86-49-25 all-time league record. His 2012 team went 8-2-2 in conference play. In 2011 the Broncos were 7-4-1 vs. WCC teams and the 2010 side was 7-1-4, appearing in the NCAA tournament's first round at Sacramento State.
The announcement of Rast being named the 2015 WCC 'Coach of the Year' marked the fifth time he has earned the honor and his first since 2010. Rast also earned the honor when he guided SCU to consecutive league titles in 2006 and 2007. The Broncos advanced into the NCAA College Cup Final Four in 2006. He also guided Santa Clara to the WCC Championship and was named the league’s coach of the year in 2003.
The Broncos finished the year strong in 2009, going unbeaten in their last five matches. Despite going 10-20-12 in 2008-09, 2008 defender and All-WCC First Team honoree Jide Ogunbiyi shined and became the second highest Major League Soccer draft pick in SCU history as he was chosen No. 18 overall by the New York Red Bulls. Thirteen Broncos were named to All-WCC teams in 2008 and 2009, while four earned NSCAA/adidas Scholar Athlete honors.
The Broncos finished 16-2-4 and 10-0-2 in the WCC in 2007 and put together an 18-game unbeaten streak from Sept. 9-Nov. 28 to earn a No. 7 seed in the NCAA Tournament and a first round bye, bowing out to Notre Dame 2-0 in the third round. For his efforts, Rast earned his third WCC Coach of the Year award and his first Far West Region Coach of the Year nod. Peter Lowry, who earned first-team All-American honors, was named the WCC Player of the Year, Jalil Anibaba was the WCC Freshman of the Year and Jamil Roberts picked up WCC Defensive Player of the Year honors.
All told, nine Broncos were named All-WCC. Four players were later selected in the 2008 MLS SuperDraft - the most since four were selected in 1996: Lowry, (Chicago Fire), Matt Marquess (KC Wizards), Roberts (FC Dallas) and Matt Hatzke (LA Galaxy). SCU set a school record with 10 conference wins in 2007 and became the first team in league history to complete the double round robin format unbeaten.
Rast and his staff led the Broncos to a 13-5-5 overall finish in 2006 and went 8-2-2 in conference - winning the league for the second time five years with Rast as head coach. Rast was named the WCC Coach of the Year. The Broncos then earned the No. 10 seed in the 2006 NCAA Tournament and a bye in the first round. SCU defeated the University of Washington 3-2 in overtime in the second round before eliminating Indiana University on the road on penalty kicks. The Broncos' run to the College Cup was halted by Wake Forest in the quarterfinals as the Demon Deacons defeated Santa Clara 3-1.
In 2005 under Rast, the Broncos had another strong season, placing second in the West Coast Conference and earning a spot in the NCAA Tournament for the 16th time in program history. The team ultimately lost on penalty kicks in the second round of the tournament, but eight players earned All-WCC honors, including WCC Player of the Year Mehdi Ballouchy, the program's first First Team All-American since 1999 (Eric Denton).
Prior to becoming head coach, Rast spent eight seasons as an assistant with the Broncos, including serving as the associate head coach in 2001. Rast has contributed greatly to the incredible amount of success that Santa Clara has achieved throughout the years, putting his unique stamp on the Santa Clara program.
During his tenure as head coach, Rast has seen his players earn 52 All-West Coast Conference first and second-team honors, two WCC Player of the Year awards and six All-American selections. For the 2015 season, Kendall McIntosh was named WCC Co-Goalkeeper of the Year and Luis Urias was named the WCC Freshman of the Year. In 2006, StephenMcCarthy was named the WCC Co-Freshman of the Year, while Peter Lowry, Keith DeVey and Jamil Roberts all earned All-Far West honors. In 2003, he was named the WCC Coach of the Year for the fi rst time, as he led the Broncos to the WCC Championship and an appearance in the NCAA College Cup.
Prior to becoming Bronco head coach in 2002, Rast helped produce 73 All-West Coast Conference selections, seven All-Americans, five WCC Defenders of the Year, one WCC Player of the Year and numerous athletes that went on to a career in professional soccer. The Broncos amassed a record of 101-42-14 with five WCC titles and seven NCAA Tournament appearances.
A former player and two-time All-American sweeper at Santa Clara, Rast earned a piece of Santa Clara's 1989 national championship and played a key role in leading the Broncos to the 1991 NCAA championship game. During his four-year career, the Broncos compiled a 57-4-11 record. As a sophomore in 1989, he earned his first All-American selection, scoring a career-high 30 points on 11 goals, as Santa Clara finished with a 20-0-3 record, the nation's top ranking and a share of the NCAA title.
A knee injury forced Rast to sit out much of his junior season in 1990, but he returned to form his senior year in 1991. He and the Broncos returned to the national championship game, this time claiming the second-place trophy. Rast earned his second All-American honor, as did his twin brother and fellow Bronco defender, Matt. In 1991, Rast was a finalist for both the Hermann Trophy and the Missouri Athletic Club Award, both given to the nation's top collegiate men's player.
Following his graduation from Santa Clara, Rast made an impact on the international scene. He helped the United States team to a gold medal at the 1991 Pan-American Games in Havana, Cuba, and served as the captain of the 1992 U.S. Olympic Team in Barcelona, Spain. He also played in the 1993 World University Games in Buffalo, N.Y., and was a member of the U.S. Under-20 team that reached the semifinals of the 1989 Youth World Cup in Saudi Arabia.
In the spring of 1997, Rast was named an assistant coach with the U.S. Under-17 National team, helping guide the squad to a fourth-place finish in the 1999 U-17 World Cup in New Zealand. Additionally, he served the sport with his participation as an executive member of U.S. Soccer's Board of Directors and on the Athlete Advisory Council representing soccer to the U.S. Olympic Committee from 1998-2002.
Rast and his wife, Mindy, live in San Jose, Calif. with their sons Jake and Timothy.