BYU Football Top 100: No. 9 Steve Young, the Greatest NFL Player from BYU
We are almost at the start of the season for BYU Football as the countdown hits No. 9 of all time.
As the season continues to get closer and closer, the more I realize exactly how important the game against Utah is, not just for the team but for everyone involved with BYU Football.
Essentially, if the Cougars are able to take down Utah in game one, they are setting themselves up for a real chance to start off the season 3-1 and be ranked very high after taking down three Power Five teams. If they lose, the season isn't over by any means, but the path to getting ranked and energizing the fan base gets much MUCH more difficult.
Today's player in the countdown is a player that has one of the oddest stories ever for the Cougars and can be compared to in many ways Taysom Hill.
No. 9 Steve Young - Quarterback
If Taysom Hill goes on to have an amazing career in the NFL, people will think of him as both an amazing college and NFL player. While Hill was a great player for BYU, he wasn't the best ever, even though someone new to the game would look at him and think because of what he is doing in the NFL he is a Top 25 player.
Steve Young was a really good player for BYU, in fact he was the ninth best player of all time, but if you only saw his play in the NFL, you would think he was the best player ever because he had the best NFL career of any former Cougar at any position winning Super Bowl MVP's and multiple championships.
But when you look back at what he actually did in college, again it was an amazing career, it becomes evident that he wasn't BYU's greatest quarterback or player ever.
Steve Young was the kind of player that if the game was going bad, he could take things into his own hands and completely change the entire game. There were so many times when receivers weren't making catches, the line wasn't opening up holes for the running backs and the defense wasn't getting stops where Young would just keep the ball and pick up 20 yards on the ground and change the momentum of the game. He also is an inspiration for thousands of other athletes who may be on the bench or where they want to be. If he could go from 8th string quarterback to Super Bowl MVP, then why can't anyone be a starter for their team at any level?
Believe it or not, Young wasn't actually the starter for that long. When he arrived to BYU he was so far down the depth chart that it was nothing short of a miracle the he ever even saw the field. At one point, he was No.8 on the depth chart and was actually watching the games from the bleachers. The crazy thing is, even when he did finally get into the game, it took until his senior season until he became the elite player that is remembered today. His first two seasons he threw 23 TD's and 23 INT's and threw less than 60% completions.
His senior season changed everything. Not only did he lead the Cougars to a 11-1 record, he completed 71.3% of his passes for 3,902 yards, 33 TD's and only 10 INT's for a QB rating of 168. Add his 429 rushing yards and eight scores on the ground and he makes a real case to have the greatest individual season by a BYU quarterback.
Memorable Moments A+
The 1983 Holiday Bowl catch that Young had was one of the greatest moments in BYU Football history. In that game he became the first player in a bowl game (and maybe ever) to throw a passing touchdown, run for a touchdown and catch a touchdown pass. The win is still played and probably forever will be played during all BYU Football highlight reels.
He had a lot of many other moments as well that aren't quite as memorable but are still very memorable. Against Utah State he had the game winning touchdown run with only 11 seconds remaining in the game. In a game against San Diego State he passed for 436 yards and three touchdowns and also added another two touchdowns on the ground.