Notre Dame's Bryant Young voted into Pro Football Hall of Fame

Staff Report
Bryant Young finished with 18 sacks and 22.5 tackles for loss in his four-year Notre Dame career, despite rushing from the inside as a defensive tackle. He led the team in sacks in each of his final three seasons. 
Tribune file photo

Former Notre Dame team captain Bryant Young was announced as a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame late Thursday night during the NFL Honors show.

In a year with no sure-fire first-ballot candidates, the panel of voters opted to choose five players who have waited years — or even decades — for the honor with offensive lineman Tony Boselli, linebacker Sam Mills, defensive back LeRoy Butler, and defensive linemen Young and Richard Seymour all getting the nod

Feb 10, 2022; Los Angeles, CA, USA; former Former San Fransisco 49er defensive end Bryant Young talks to the media during the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2022 Induction Announcement after the NFL Honors program. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

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The five had all come up short as finalists in previous years and been out of the game for between the last nine and 24 seasons but that didn't diminish their remarkable accomplishments that will send them to Canton for induction on Aug. 6. 

Young was a 1993 All-American at defensive tackle for ND. He was a three-starter for the Irish and was in his 10th year of eligibility for the Pro Hall.

The San Francisco 49ers selected Young as the No. 7 overall pick in the 1994 NFL Draft. As a rookie he was on the 49ers' fifth Super Bowl champion team. He spent his entire 14-year career with the 49ers, finishing with 89.5 career sacks.

Young was named NFL Comeback Player of the Year in 1999 after returning to play following a broken leg. He finished the 1999 campaign with 42 tackles, three passes defensed, 20 QB pressures and team-leading 11 sacks, 15 tackles for a loss and one safety. He was a two-time All-Pro.

"I don't want to go out and demand anything. I want to work to get something," Young said. "That was instilled in me from my dad. Every opportunity I had to go out on the field, I never took it for granted and made sure I was prepared. I played the game with utmost respect for my opponent. That was important to me."

Young finished his Notre Dame career with 18 sacks and 22.5 tackles for loss.

Young becomes Notre Dame’s 14th player to be tabbed for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, tying the Irish with the most selections of any school in the country. He joins Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown, Nick Buoniconti, Dave Casper, George Connor, Edward DeBartolo Jr., Paul Hornung, Earl Lambeau, John McNally, Wayne Millner, Joe Montana, Alan Page and George Trafton. 

Bryant Young played for the San Francisco 49ers from 1994 to 2007.

Three others who also have endured long waits were voted in by the panel with former Raiders speedster Cliff Branch getting in as the senior candidate, Super Bowl winner Dick Vermeil in the coach category and longtime head of officiating Art McNally as a contributor.

The Class of 2022 will be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Aug. 6 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton.

Associated Press contributed to this report