The Ohio High School Basketball Coaches Association is proud to announce that Bob Arnzen of Delphos S. John’s High School is the recipient of the 1979 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.
Paper and print cannot do justice to the career of Bob Arnzen who spent 43 years as coach at Delphos St. John’s and is the second winningest coach in the history of Ohio High School basketball with 676 wins and 291 losses. His teams were state tournament runner-ups in 1954 and 1973; state semifinalist in 1982; state champs in 1983; and state semifinalist in 1990. St. John’s had no league affiliation until the 1971-72 season, when they joined the WEstern Buckeye League and consequently took the league championship in 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1980, 1981 and 1982. St. John’s joined the Midwest Athletic Conference in 1982, and were champs in 1983, 1987 and 1989.
In addition to basketball, Arnzen was the first head football coach at St. John’s in 1955 and then served as assistant from 1956 to 1965. He was head baseball coach from 1950-62, and served two stints as head cross country coach 1972-76 and 1979-80.
Throughout his career Bob was very active in the coach’s association, not only on the local level but also the state and national levels. He organized the District 8 Coaches Association in 1966, serving as President through 1968. He served as District Director of the OHSBCA from 1966-68 and then was elected Assistant Secretary / Treasurer of the state association, from 1970 to the present. He also served on the Basketball Rules Advisory Committee from 1987-1994. For many years he has also been a member of the National Federal Interscholastic Coaches Association.
Coach Arnzen received many honors during his career, including: Coach of the Year in Ohio twice; National Catholic Coach of the Year; Paul Walker Award; Ohio Pro / Am Award for Distinguished Lifetime Achievement in Sports; Mac Morrison Lifetime Service Award from the Northwest Athletic District Board; University of Dayton Sports Achievement Award; and Northern Kentucky Sports Hall of Fame.
In 1963-1964 he was a coach in the North-South All-Star Game; coached the Ohio All-Stars in the Dapper Dan game in Pittsburgh; the first District 8 game in 1974-1975 and again in 1989-1990. Also in 1990 he coach the Ohio All-Stars in the two game Ohio-Michigan series. In 1989-1990 he was a National High School Athletic Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year finalist.
Bob graduated from the University of Dayton in 1951 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Education, and received his Master’s in Administration there in 1979. He is a devoted family man with wife Alice, sons Jim Arnzen and Ted Arnzen, and daughters Elaine Sheehan, Marie Arnzen and Jeanne Gulick. He has eight grandchildren.