Adam Young has had a passion for sports since a young age and even more of a passion for sports broadcasting.
Young, 33, is the director of broadcasting for New Mexico State athletics, and works for the company Learfield. He covers play-by-play for TV and radio, covering NMSU football, baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball and softball. He is from the St. Louis, Missouri, area and attended college at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Young got his start on air at the age of 18.
“I got experience in a lot of different areas,” Young said. “I had a really good four years of college. I knew whenever I started doing [broadcasting], that’s what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.”
Before coming to NMSU, Young’s first job out of college was being the radio voice for the Fayetteville SwampDogs, which at the time was a collegiate summer league baseball team. “I walked for graduation on Saturday, had my graduation party on a Sunday, then at 6 a.m. on a Monday drove 14 hours to Fayetteville, North Carolina, to take over as their broadcaster,” Young said.
“I’ve been working at NMSU for around 15 years, and Adam is one of the most prepared play-by-play guys that I’ve had a chance to work with.”
Young’s first big break was when he became the radio voice of the minor league baseball team the Gateway Grizzlies, which was located just outside of his hometown. “It was my first big break since the job included salary and benefits,” he said. “I was able to be 20 minutes from my hometown and call professional baseball.”
When his career just started, Young was told by mentors that you go where the job is. “You don’t think twice about an opportunity to advance your career — take it.”
Being a sports journalist means you face a lot of sacrifices. Young is one who has been through it all when it comes to leaving behind many personal things for doing the job that he loves.
“You sacrifice everything for this job,” Young said. “My entire family is in the Midwest. I came out here [to Las Cruces] by myself, knowing no one.”
Young has had to deal with more sacrifices after meeting his now wife in Las Cruces during an interview. She accepted a coaching job at the University of Southern California for women’s basketball, forcing the couple into a long-distance relationship that lasted for four-plus years. “We both understand how hard it is to work in this particular business,” Young said. “These are the sacrifices you have to make in this business to have success.”
Broadcasting for Western Athletic Conference and NMSU games means that announcers must be very unbiased when calling games. Young knows that people are watching his games all over the nation and knows to call his games 50-50.
“I’m very aware that people watching the games might not be Aggie fans,” he said. “I pride myself on not being a homer and being as neutral as possible.”
Games are broadcast on multiple media outlets such Bally Sports Arizona, Comcast and ESPN+, which can be viewed anywhere in the U.S. “They could be a huge fan of the opposing team,” Young said.
Young has received much laudation from listeners, along with his broadcasting partners, for his call on games. Danny Knee is a color commentator for NMSU football on AggieVision and has been working alongside Young for nearly seven years. “I’ve been working at NMSU for around 15 years, and Adam is one of the most prepared play-by-play guys that I’ve had a chance to work with,” Knee said. “He is so knowledgeable in all of the sports, and brings a breath of understanding of all the different players and coaches.”
Knee believes that Young is a great person in the Las Cruces community and an even greater role model for younger journalists. “He gives back to the community, which is very important,” he said. “He’s willing to talk to anyone, which is important in being a good role model.”
Patrick Knapp is the color commentator for NMSU women’s basketball and has worked alongside Young since he came to the university. “[Young] is very well prepared when it comes to analyzing a team,” Knapp said. “He has a lot of notes and good information when he starts a telecast.”
Knapp mentioned that he has a great presence on screen and a great voice when calling games. “He shows that excitement when a team does good, and he shows great enthusiasm on air.”
As for Young’s future, he sees himself staying as a play-by-play announcer and just wants to call games at the highest level in any sport. “I am 100% confident I will never leave play-by-play,” he said. “This is the part of the business I really enjoy.”