FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. —Omar McLeod has made a statement right off the bat, being crowned the 2014 NCAA 60-Meter Hurdle Champion in his first season with the Razorbacks. McLeod’s time of 7.58 earned the Kingston, Jamaica native an NCAA Title in his first-ever championship meet, giving the Razorbacks 10 points on their way to a runner-up finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships. McLeod’s championship time followed an NCAA-leading performance in Friday’s prelims with a school-best 7.57. As a freshman, McLeod owns an Arkansas school record in the 60-meter hurdles (7.57) and ranks among the top-10 in the 60-meter dash (6.73/6th) and 200-meter (21.09/10th). McLeod is proving early on that he is here to carry on the tradition of Arkansas Track & Field.
McLeod on choosing the University of Arkansas… “I came to Arkansas for the coaches. They were so genuine towards me. I was going through a hard time because I was being asked to go pro, but they stood by me through thick and thin. The Arkansas coaches were interested in me before I ever broke the national record, they were with me from the beginning. Other schools came after me following those events, but Arkansas was with me before that. It showed me what kind of coaches they are. I trust them because they were dedicated to me before those victories.”
On what it feels like to be a National Champion… “Becoming a National Champion as a freshman just goes to show how great of a school Arkansas is. They always have your back and work on helping you get better. There is also never a dull moment here — which makes every experience more enjoyable. There is a reason we have National Champions at Arkansas. Without the support from my coaches and teammates, it wouldn’t have been possible.”
On the rich tradition of Razorback Track & Field… “There is a lot of tradition with the Razorbacks. The coaches treat everyone with so much respect, that tradition continues to grow. Between the staff and facilities, it is clear when you step on campus why Arkansas has the reputation it has.”
On the continued success of the Razorbacks each and every year… “Arkansas is all about success, each and every year. I fit in well here because I’m always driving, always pushing to get better. In track & field, you’re not always going to win — sometimes you do, sometimes you don’t. But the mindset here is to keep working no matter what, it really helps me stay on track. With a successful indoor season behind me, I’m really looking forward to the outdoor season.” For more information on Razorback Track & Field, follow @RazorbackTF on Twitter.