In Scott Tedder’s four seasons on the Ohio Wesleyan University men’s basketball team, he set records for the most points scored, most steals, most free throws, and best scoring average in Battling Bishop history.
He also led the team to a victory in the 1988 NCAA Division III National Championships. The accomplishment still is remembered and celebrated on the OWU campus—and now has been immortalized in Ohio sports history.
Tedder was inducted this spring into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame. He is the third OWU basketball standout to be inducted into the Hall in its six years of existence. The 1988 team also was inducted during the May ceremony, held in Columbus.
“It was great for me individually and for the team to be inducted in the same year,” says Tedder, who lives in Hoover, Alabama, with his wife, LaDonna, and two daughters, Mary Katherine and Elizabeth. These days he works as a buyer for Hibbett Sports. “We all came in as freshman and … we had a four-year journey together to get that championship in 1988.”
Tedder played both basketball and baseball, becoming the first Ohio Wesleyan athlete to receive All-America honors in two sports. He still holds several OWU and NCAC basketball records, but said he isn’t worried about the stats.
“Records are meant to be broken,” Tedder says. “Someday someone is going to break those records. … I think they just speak to the team effort that I was able to put up those numbers.”
Because the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame is so new, Tedder says, it is exciting that the Battling Bishops are so prominently represented already.
“It’s a great honor for Ohio Wesleyan as a … DIII school to have three members in the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame so early,” Tedder says. “It represents the whole state and we already have three people in the first six years. It’s an honor to the University as a whole, and it shows the tradition and backing that the University and Roger Ingles have for the basketball program.”
In addition to Tedder, OWU’s other inductees into the Ohio Basketball Hall of Fame are 11-year NBA veteran Barry Clemens ’65, inducted in 2009, and Frank Shannon, who was inducted in 2010. Shannon was head coach of the OWU men’s basketball team from 1958-1979, during which he won 214 games and set the record for the highest winning percentage with his 1961-62 team. Clemens left OWU as the leading scorer until Tedder’s new record, and Clemens went on to play for five NBA teams during his 11-year career.
Tedder says he encourages current OWU athletes to embrace their time and experiences as Battling Bishops.
“I tell people all the time I played baseball with Michael Jordan,” Tedder says, “but it doesn’t compare to winning the NCAA Championship in ’88 at Ohio Wesleyan.”
Tedder’s advice to today’s student-athletes is to realize just how short four years is and to enjoy the process of growing up. Speaking from experience, he also emphasized how important it is to stay all four years. He was drafted to play baseball his junior year and had the option to leave Ohio Wesleyan.
“I had a decision to make whether I would go play or stay at Ohio Wesleyan—and I chose to stay,” Tedder says.
The decision was the right one, Tedder says, and it worked out well for Ohio Wesleyan, too.
“We had a four year journey to get to that championship in 1988 and now 23 years later people are still recognizing it,” Tedder says. “You don’t realize how big it is until now 23 years later we’re being inducted.”