The Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association is proud to announce that Jim Lawhead of Lorain Catholic High School is the recipient of the 1998 Paul Walker Award. The Paul Walker Award is presented annually by the OHSBCA to an active coaching member of the association who has made significant contributions to high school basketball. The award is named in honor of the late Paul Walker, the long time coach of Middletown High School. At the time of his retirement, he had the most wins as a boys basketball coach in Ohio High School Basketball history.
Jim Lawhead is a native of Lorain, Ohio and graduate of “old” St. Mary High School and Ohio Northern University. He received his Master’s Degree in Sport Management from the United State Sports Academy in Daphne, Alabama in 1990. Coach Lawhead served as the Athletic Director of Lorain Catholic for 30 years and is presently the Dean of Men as well as the head basketball coach.
Coach Lawhead is entering his 36th season as a head basketball coach in the state of Ohio. He began his head coaching career at his alma mater, Lorain St. Mary, in 1962. In five seasons at St. Mary his record was 79-25. Jim also spent two years as head coach at Lorain Brookside in the 60’s. Coach Lawhead became the first head coach in Lorain Catholic history when it opened for the 1969-70 school year. His record at Lorain Catholic is 418-203 and his overall career mark is 506-257.
His 1975-76 team went 25-1, winning 24 straight games before losing 82-81 in the Class AA Championship game at St. John’s Arena. The “76” team still holds several state tournament records including the most points (108) in a game in any class. Coach Lawhead’s 1985 team went 23-4 and advanced to the state semifinals. His teams also won 11 league titles, 19 sectional championships, 9 district crowns, and 9 “Sweet Sixteen” appearances.
Coach Lawhead was named Boys Division III Coach of the Year by the OHSBCA for the 1992-93 season, has received the Bob Arnzen Longevity Award, and was inducted into the Lorain Sports Hall of Fame in 1985.
Jim resides in Lorain with his wife of 38 years, the former Barbara Ann Rodisel. They have seven grown children: Jim, Michael, Kathy, Lisa, twins Maureen & Matthew, and Jason. They also have one granddaughter, Riley and are expecting their second grandchild in April.