Steve, meet Kevin.

Kevin, Steve.

The most famous sports star in BYU history, who shares the last name as school founder Brigham Young, is ready to make room for another one.

“I’m not sure that we are related, but we are now!” said NFL Hall of Fame quarterback and former Cougar Steve Young about BYU’s new head basketball coach Kevin Young. “People worry about the Cougs being able to answer and build and rise up to the Big 12 challenge — this is our answer!”

Kevin Young, the soon-to-be former Phoenix Suns associate head coach, is leaving the NBA to lead BYU into its second season in the Big 12 and beyond.

Both Young and the Cougars are enjoying a boomerang effect — what went out is coming back in.

With a single media post by ESPN’s NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski to announce Young was leaving the Suns to become the Cougars new head coach, BYU’s six-day anxiety storm subsided, and the program’s uncertain future was made certain.

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The hiring may not have come soon enough to keep key Cougars from entering the transfer portal or from losing the commitment of its highest-rated basketball recruit since Danny Ainge, but perhaps with help from Ainge, landing Young opens the door for so much more.

It also marks a week of firsts for BYU. Never had the Cougars lost a head coach to a national blue-blood program and never had BYU hired his replacement directly from the NBA. Make no question, the Cougars paid to get him and reportedly Young didn’t come cheap. He also did not come to retire or to honor a personal favor or to get somewhere else. He is coming to win and build BYU into a Big 12 contender.

Born in Salt Lake City, the 42-year-old gets Utah. He gets the church. He gets the culture and he gets the history. He also comes from an address where every promising player wants to live — the NBA.

For the moment, Young may be unfamiliar to Cougar Nation, but he is no stranger to basketball. He’s coached locally, nationally and internationally. His NBA efforts earned him high praise from his peers and the highest salary among all assistant coaches.

Young’s career is also linked to a boomerang effect. His college coaching started in Utah Valley as an assistant at UVU in 2007, and 17 years later his career is bringing him back to its point of origin, just two miles to the east where he gets to join the Young family — Brigham and Steve.

Phoenix Suns acting head coach Kevin Young directs his team during a game against the Boston Celtics, Friday, Dec. 31, 2021, in Boston. | Mary Schwalm