Walter Harrop had an extraordinary career as a coach at his alma mater – Shawnee High School in Perry County. Legend has it that he was planning to drop out of school in 1919 when he was a sophomore at Shawnee, but the superintendent told him he had too much potential to put his education aside. Harrop said he would stay in school if Shawnee would have basketball teams for the boys and girls.
Informed that there was no money to hire a coach, Harrop offered to coach the teams. His offer was accepted and he immediately led the Shawnee boys to first place in the county League. He coached for three years. Then he attended Muskingum College, serving as a captain of the basketball and football teams.
After graduation Harrop was hired to coach at Shawnee and his girls teams won 80 games between 1929 and 1938 when the program was discontinued. Over 36 years, his Shawnee boys teams won 516 games and lost 242. His 1938 team had a 28-2 record and reached the Class B state semifinals. During World War II, he coached several different schools at the same time and on eight occasions, he had to coach against himself. His wife, Catherine, resides in Shawnee, Ohio. Walter Harrop died in 1964.