The first part of USA Today Sports’ inaugural ranking of the 50 most influential black people in sports was released on Tuesday morning, which included a bevy of players, coaches, and members of the media.
Some are Super Bowl champions and Olympic gold medalists, while others are emerging superstars in their respective fields. Trae Young was ranked 46th, ahead of recognizable faces in sports like Brian Flores and Maya Moore and behind pioneers like Jay-Z and Shaquille O’Neal.
As Black History Month begins, we begin our unveil of the 50 most influential Black figures in the world of sports.
— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) February 2, 2022
Young is part of the NBA’s next generation of superstars. He’s must-watch TV every time he steps on the court, becoming one of the most marketable young stars in the Association. However, Young’s also inspired a generation of young fans with his off-the-court actions.
Long before he received his max contract extension, Young has given to numerous philanthropic endeavors. In January of 2020, he helped eliminate $1 million in medical debt for struggling families in Atlanta.
In the Summer of 2020, Young and his family donated $4 million for a sports facility — The Young Family Center — in Norman, Oklahoma, which was the largest donation in the city’s history.
Young is a role model for everyone, not just basketball fans or young people. I expect him to keep moving up this list as his career continues.