« Men’s Basketball 2008-09

Sam Young

University of Pittsburgh
Sam Young


Young maintains an approximate 2.5 GPA.


Sam has overcome many odds during his life, including helping his little brother (who is blind) through a devastating transition.  Off the court, Young is an accomplished pianist and poet.  During the off-season, Young can be found in local coffee shops reading his latest collection of poems, and he has already spoken with a publisher about a future book.  In addition, he passed on the NBA draft to return for his senior season in an attempt to make a deeper run in the NCAA tournament.


Sam remains active in his community despite a demanding schedule.  He has participated in various activities including the WTAE Healthy 4 Life Expo, where he signed autographs and made appearances to help find a cure for diabetes.  Sam has also made visits to a local VA Hospital where he signed autographs and spent time with patients.  He was also an active part of the Panther PAWS (Pitt Athletes Working with Students) where each week, a different team conducted a weekly instructional sports clinic with an educational topic.  The clinic provided over 70 youth from the Hill District community the opportunity to be exposed to different sports and educational presentations. Young also aided the Paw Prints Presentation, in which members of the men’s basketball team used Paw Prints newsletter to promote healthy living and good decision making among middle school students. The team collaborated with Amachi Pittsburgh, local nonprofit community organization. Amachi is a unique partnership of secular and faith-based organizations working together to provide mentoring to children of incarcerated parents. After the team facilitated interactive activities and discussion, they enjoyed bowling with participants.  Additionally, Sam was active in an American Red Cross Hurricane Katrina Fundraiser at a Pitt Football game, and has made visits to Children’s Hospital where he participated in arts and crafts, played video games and board games.


Sam has quite the list of preseason honors in 2008-09 including an Associated Press All-America honorable mention status and becoming a finalist for the Naismith Award.  He was listed as one of CNNSI’s Top-15 Seniors, a CollegeInsider.com All-America choice, Blue Ribbon, Second Team All-America, and Blue Ribbon, First Team All-Big East.  The Sporting News named Young to their All-Big East First Team, and USA Today granted him All-Big East First Team status.  He is listed by Lindy’s as the nation’s No. 3 ranked small forward, a member of their All-Big East First Team, and the Lindy’s Big East’s Most Entertaining Player.  Athlon named Sam the nation’s No. 4 slasher, an All-America honorable mention, bestowed upon him a No. 21 overall ranking (Fantasy basketball), a No. 6 small forward ranking (Fantasy basketball), and a listed him as a member of their All-Big East Second Team.  Additionally this season, Young received CollegeHoops.net Fourth Team All-America status and was tabbed an USBWA All-District and NABC All-District member, and was listed as the 2008 Big East Most Improved Player.  He is a member of the All-Big East First Team and is ranked among Big East leaders in scoring (3rd), field goal percentage (10th), offensive rebounding (14th) and minutes played (18th).  He is the reigning Big East Tournament Most Outstanding Player and Pitt MVP.  He set school records for season scoring (668 points) and double figure scoring games (36) and scored over 20 points in 15 games in 2008.  Young was also a 2005-06 Big East All-Rookie Team selection and was selected as one of the top 30 midseason candidates for the 2009 Wooden Award.