Western Mustangs guard Omar Shiddo has broken the men’s basketball team’s all-time point record.
Shiddo pushed his regular season point total to 1,600 during the third quarter against the Algoma University Thunderbirds on Nov. 5, leapfrogging over Western University’s previous record holder, Greg Morrow.
When asked if he was aware of the record, a grin grew across the fifth-year guard’s face.
“Yeah, I knew. I knew for a long time,” says Shiddo. “In my third year, I broke 1000 points. Ever since then, in the back of your mind, you’re familiar with the all-time number. I knew [it was] 18 points to break it and 17 points to tie it.”
Shiddo says that, although people around him exchanged words about the record before the game, the team focused on having a good start of the season.
“My friends, my family ... they all knew about it,” Shiddo notes. “Coach [Brad Campbell] talked about it in passing. Everyone was familiar with it and knew what was happening, so there was a bit of pressure. Honestly, I just thought it was cool and wanted to go out there and see what happened.”
Shiddo dropped 15 points to bring him within one basket of the record in the first quarter.
And in the third frame, after driving through Algoma, Shiddo completed a lay-in, and in the same moment, became Western’s all-time leading scorer. His family roared from the stands.
M🏀 RECORD BREAKER!!!With this point, Omar Shiddo surpasses Greg Morrow and becomes the all-time leading scorer in @Mustangs_Bball program history with 1852 and counting.Congratulations to @BallHardShiddo . 👏👏#RunWithUs #PurpleAndProud #WesternMustangs pic.twitter.com/ZDSjPDL5w1— Western Mustangs (@WesternMustangs) November 6, 2021
“Everything in my life has led me to this point, to be this leader,” Shiddo says. “Sports, to me, is life in a nutshell. You need teammates to get things done. It’s not just you out there. There’s going to be stuff thrown at you, and you need your teammates, your family, to grow around you.”
Shiddo’s journey started back in the eighth grade in Brampton, where he began playing.
After going to prep schools in Nevada and North Carolina during his final high school years, the senior student committed to Western University.
“Coach Brad [Campbell] recruited me pretty early on.... Western was somewhere where I could see myself,” explains Shiddo.
Shiddo models himself after Damian Lillard and Fred VanVleet because of their height — Shiddo is 6-1 — and leadership attitude.
Leadership has been an essential factor for the senior in his final year of eligibility — it’s one of the things that keeps him motivated night in and night out.
“Being the lone veteran on the team, not only do I have to perform statistically, but I also have to lead in all facets,” he says. “[I have to be] working the hardest, be at practice, be level-headed and stay engaged.”
The Mustangs are currently undefeated in both preseason and regular play, winning both of their games against Algoma University – Shiddo averaging 26 points per game.
Shiddo and the Mustangs have their eye on a championship this year. After a bronze medal loss to the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds back in March 2020, Shiddo stresses the importance of fundamentals.
“[We] keep getting better,” says Shiddo. “The teams that get better by the end of February go further. As long as we know we’ve given it our all, we can live with the results.”
Shiddo looks to improve his play further with hopes of playing professional basketball after Western. But for him, basketball is much more than just a profession.
“Basketball is everything. It’s made me the person I am today,” says Shiddo. “It’s given me a place to express myself. A place where I can get away from the stresses of life. Basketball has made me a better and smarter person.”