Rusty Oetinger, the successful 15-year golf coach at Yosemite High School, has been named the school’s new athletic director, effective July 1.
Oetinger, who teachers algebra, environmental and spatial technology and ROP small business management at YHS, will officially take over his new duties July 1, replacing Michelle Chenowith who stepped down to spend more time in the classroom and to focus her athletic attention on the Badger volleyball program after serving as AD for three years.
Oetinger’s experience includes coaching multiple sports including club volleyball and soccer, and girls basketball during his tenure at Oak Creek Intermediate. But he’s best known as a golf coach.
Since beginning as the Yosemite High golf coach in 2002, Oetinger has produced 10 girls league titles, two Central Section girls runner up plaques, one girls Central Section Championship, five boys league Championships, and one boys Central Section Championship. The Fresno Bee named Oetinger the girls Central Section Golf Coach of the Year this past season.
Oetinger said he was originally a baseball guy.
“I loved baseball so much, that I played until I was 30,” Oetinger said. “At that time I was also coaching in the summer league for Palomar College in San Marcos. I didn’t play in high school because I was really small and focused on wrestling. My goal was to wrestle for The University of Oregon when I graduated. The summer I graduated they did away with the wrestling program at U of O. After that disappointment, my family moved to Orange County and I began running cross country for Saddleback Junior College. After moving back to the San Diego area, I made my way back to baseball and was doing a little bit of work for Cox Cable and The San Diego Padres.”
As a First Tee golf instructor and acting national coach trainer with the First Tee International, Oetinger hopes to model the YHS athletic program much like that of first tee - a nation wide organization focused on the development of character, instilling life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf.
As well as being a Coach Trainer for The First Tee, I am proud to say that I am now a Registered Athletic Administrator and member of the California State Athletic Directors Association and National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association.
“My goals for this upcoming year are to learn the job of being an athletic director,” Oetinger said. “As for the programs on campus, I am going to model our program after the The First Tee. The basic philosophy of The First Tee is to promote positive youth development through the game of golf. We at Yosemite are going develop positive youth development through sports. Finally, we are going to focus on creating a positive and welcoming environment for the schools that come to compete against our teams,” Oetinger said.
Overall Oetinger said he is looking forward to getting started and developing a working relationship with all the Yosemite coaches as well as the administration.
“I am really looking forward to working closely with our new football coach JD Burnett,” Oetinger said. “He and I have similar philosophies that will meld well together. He and I both believe in keeping high standards, while developing not only athletes but good quality people that represent not only Yosemite High School, but our surrounding communities.”