Young's place as an outstanding collegiate and professional athlete is secure. He will forever be remembered as one of the greatest quarterbacks ever to play football. However, for many individuals, Young will be remembered for much more than just his on-field heroics and incredible accomplishments.
Young has devoted his time and talents to helping children nationwide. His charitable work off the field is extensive and has made a significant impact in the lives of many. He founded and chairs the Forever Young Foundation, which is actively involved in children's charities nationwide, including developing state-of-the-art recreational therapy rooms at hospitals called Forever Young Zones. He is also a broadcast host for the Children's Miracle Network.
A direct descendant of the pioneer leader Brigham Young, Steve is also an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ for Latter-day Saints, and is actively engaged in serving its members in many different capacities and on special assignments. From the time he was a freshman at BYU, until present day, Young (who is a popular motivational speaker) can often be found encouraging, motivating and inspiring large assemblies of young and old alike.
In 14 seasons with the San Francisco 49ers, Young completed 2,400 of 3,648 passes for 221 touchdowns. He was the NFL's MVP in 1992 and 1994 and became the only quarterback ever to win four consecutive passing titles and compile six consecutive 300-plus yard passing games. He followed up his '94 MVP regular season with a record-setting performance in Super Bowl XXXI, throwing for a record six TDs in leading the 49ers to a 49-26 rout over the Chargers and earning MVP honors. He was selected to seven consecutive Pro Bowls and retired after the 2000 season as the highest rated quarterback in NFL history.
Young also had a stellar collegiate career at BYU, where he earned Academic All-America honors in 1982. A consensus All-American as a senior, Young continued the tradition of phenomenal BYU quarterbacks by throwing for 7,733 yards and 56 touchdowns and was the 1983 Heisman Trophy runner-up. He graduated in 1984 with a 3.15 GPA in International Relations, and eventually earned a law degree from BYU in 1994.
Currently a broadcaster for ESPN's highly successful "NFL GameDay" on Sundays during the NFL season, Young and his wife Barbara reside in Palo Alto, Calif., with their two children.
To be eligible for induction into the Verizon Academic All-America Hall of Fame. a candidate had to be an Academic All-America team member who graduated at least 10 years ago. The 2003 inductees were selected from a group of 160 individuals who were nominated by the Sports Information Directors at their schools, all of whom are members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). There are now 78 members of the Hall of Fame, including this year's class. Honorary inductees are eligible candidates who competed prior to the establishment of the Academic All-America program in their respective sport.
CBS sportscaster and Verizon Academic All-America Hall of Fame member Dick Enberg will be the host for the 16th annual event. The theme of the program is "Defining Moments."
"All of this year's inductees are tremendous role models," said Enberg. "The class of 2003 will help maintain the high standards established by the previous inductees who make the Hall of Fame induction such a prestigious honor."
"The class of 2003 is the ultimate example of the types of individuals who exemplify everything positive about the Academic All-America program and the Hall of Fame. The members of CoSIDA are proud to play a part in this tremendous event," said Alan Cannon, president of CoSIDA.
Under an agreement with CoSIDA, Verizon has been the exclusive sponsor of the Academic All-America program since 1985. Verizon, America's literacy champion, strongly believes that literacy is a key ingredient to success and outstanding achievements in life. The Academic All-America program is part of Verizon Reads, the company's national campaign to promote literacy through corporate philanthropy, partner collaboration, community outreach, and customer and employee participation.
"Literacy is a fundamental skill," said Verizon regional president John Dudley. "By virtue of their accomplishments in college and in their subsequent careers, this year's inductees into the Verizon Academic All-America Hall of Fame are an inspiration to us all, and proof that literacy leading to academic achievement is essential for a well-rounded, successful and fulfilling life."