Former player takes over at the helm of Spartan basketball

Southwestern Head Men's Basketball Coach Devin Kastrup
Southwestern Head Men's Basketball Coach Devin Kastrup

The Southwestern Community College men’s basketball program has named its next head coach—Devin Kastrup of Gunnison, CO. It won’t be Kastrup’s first time in Creston or on the hardwood in the Spartan gymnasium; but this time, Kastrup will be at the helm of the Spartan basketball program, as opposed to wearing a Spartan jersey.

Kastrup, originally from Colorado Springs, CO, was a forward for the Southwestern Spartan basketball team from 2011-13, when the program was under the direction of Head Coach Mike Holmes. After earning his Associate of Arts degree from Southwestern, Kastrup transferred to Western Colorado University in Gunnison, CO, where he finished his collegiate playing career and earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise and sports science with an emphasis in sport and fitness management. Kastrup was team captain for both college programs and earned all-conference honors.

Most recently, Kastrup has been the assistant men’s basketball coach at his alma mater, Western Colorado University. During his first year coaching at Western, 2017-18, he helped guide the program to more than double their wins from the previous year and earn more wins during a single season than the team had earned since 2012. The Mountaineers made the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) playoffs for the first time in five seasons. The next two years, Kastrup coached four all-conference selections, including one first team selection. The team led the RMAC in academic all-conference selections with seven in 2018-19.

Doug North, Southwestern athletic director, said timing was everything in bringing Kastrup back to Creston.

“A late head coaching opening is always a worry, but after the initial review of resumes we knew we had quality applicants,” North stated. “Devin is going to provide stability for the program and has a priority of recruiting strong and respectable student-athletes. Our men’s basketball program is being passed on to some very capable hands.”

Kastrup played professionally for three seasons in Spain and China. During Kastrup’s first season overseas, he was named Rookie of the Year. Kastrup’s second season was cut short due to an injury. At that time, spring 2017, he returned to the United States and joined the coaching staff at the University of Maine at Presque Isle for the second half of their season. He was an associate head coach for The Force Basketball, in Colorado Springs, CO, during the summers from 2015-17.

Kastrup said he is confident his coaching priorities will bring strong student athletes to Creston and ensure Southwestern’s men’s basketball program continues its exemplary tradition.

“I am passionate about coaching and mentoring young men, leading them to successful roles on-and-off-the-court,” Kastrup explained. “I believe demanding excellence teaches student athletes lessons translating into on-the-court success; and more importantly, setting them up for success in future endeavors.”

Kastrup will arrive in Creston and begin his position next week.