Darren Young

Frederick Douglas Rosser III

D.O.B: 2 November, 1979
Birthplace: Union Township, New Jersey
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 239lbs
Trained By: Dennis Condrey, Kevin Knight, FCW
Twitter: @DarrenYoungWWE

Frederick Douglas Rosser III in a professional wrestler currently working for WWE under the ring name Darren Young.

While with WWE he is best known for being one half of The Prime Time Players, with tag team partner Titus O’Neil.

As a part of The Prime Time Players, Young has held the WWE Tag Team Championship on one occasion.

Before he arrived in WWE, Rosser worked for independent promotions such as the National Wrestling Alliance, the East Coast Wrestling Alliance and Chaotic Wrestling.

Personal Life

Fred Rosser was born in Union Township, New Jersey. He first became interested in professional wrestling in the mid- 1980’s. In his teenage years he wrestled for several backyard wrestling federation’s.

On August 15th, 2013, Rosser revealed that he is homosexual. Even though there have been others such as Pat Patterson, Chris Kanyon and Orlando Jordan who came out as gay after leaving the promotion, Young is the first wrestler to publicly come out, whilst still actively competing with a major promotion. WWE made a public statement of support for Rosser, who has been in a relationship with his partner, Nick since 2011.

Rosser has said that his favourite wrestlers were Ricky Steamboat and Shawn Michaels.

On October 5th, 2011, Darren Young was suspended for 30 days for a wellness policy violation.

Professional Wrestling Career

Ring Names
Darren Young

Rosser as Fred Sampson in IWF

Rosser was trained by Camp IWF in West Patterson, New Jersey. He made his professional debut in 2002 and spent the next few years working the independent circuit. He wrestled for the IWF as well as Chaotic Wrestling. On May 17th, 2003, Rosser won the IWF Heavyweight Championship, his first major title. He held the title for over half a year, before dropping the belt to Roman on January 17th, 2004.

Whilst wrestling for Chaotic Wrestling, Rosser caught the eye of promoter Jim Kettner, who brought him to the ECWA, where he made his debut in the summer of 2004. Soon after his debut, Rosser began a feud with Prince Nana for the ECWA Mid Atlantic Championship.

Rosser would eventually defeat Nana for the title on September 18th, 2004. He would hold the title for two months before losing it to Nick Malakai.

WWE; Darren Young

During 2005 and 2006, Rosser would make several appearances for WWE. These appearances came in the form of dark matches on RAW and Smackdown as well as matches on Sunday Night Heat and Velocity.

In May 2009, Rosser signed a developmental deal with WWE and was assigned to FCW.

In FCW, Rosser was renamed Darren Young and placed into a tag team with Percy Watson, called The South Beach Party.

On February 16th, 2010, it was announced that Darren Young would participate in the first series of NXT, where he would be mentored by CM Punk.

On the 23rd February, 2010, Young made his NXT debut. His character was a South Beach Party Boy and his first match ended in defeat to David Otunga. The storyline saw his mentor, CM Punk question why Young was in NXT at all and say that he wouldn’t train Young unless he adopted Punk’s straight Edge lifestyle.

Young did eventually agree to join Punk’s Straight Edge Society, but he changed his mind before having his hair shaved off. Young was eliminated from NXT a few weeks later.

The Nexus

Darren Young

Young (second right) with the Nexus

After NXT season one had come to an end, Darren Young joined with the other NXT rookies in interfering in a match between John Cena and CM Punk on RAW. The group of rookies attacked both Punk and Cena as well as the commentary team and ring announcer Justin Roberts, before dismantling the ring side equipment.

On June 14th the rookies attacked RAW General Manager Bret Hart after he refused to give them contracts. The following week on RAW, it was revealed that the new General Manager had given all seven rookies contracts. The week after, the group was given the name The Nexus.

The Nexus began a feud with John Cena, whom was targeted by the Nexus for weekly attacks. Cena attacked Young and as punishment was placed in a 7-on-1 handicap match against the group. Young however, did not participate in the match due to injuries caused by John Cena’s attack a week earlier.

The Nexus’ feud with Cena grew to include pretty much the entire RAW roster. This led to a 7-on-7 elimination match at SummerSlam. Darren Young was the first person eliminated from the match. The following night on RAW, The Nexus faced off in one-on-one matches against the victorious Team WWE members, with the stipulation being that if any member of The Nexus lost, they would be forced to leave the group. Darren Young failed to defeat John Cena and as such he was attacked kicked out of the group.

Young would return on the 6th September episode of RAW, where he would distract Nexus leader Wade Barrett and cost him the match against Randy Orton. This turned Young face.

Young then entered a Battle Royal to determine the number one contender for the WWE Championship, but he was eliminated by the Nexus. After this Young had a few singles matches against William Regal and Primo.

Return To NXT

In March 2011, Darren Young was one of the six former NXT wrestlers who were selected to return to the series for its fifth season, NXT: Redemption. This time around he would be mentored by Chavo Guerrero.

While in NXT, Darren Young quickly began a feud with Titus O’Neil after attacking him and his mentor, Hornswoggle. The feud was settled after O’Neil defeated Young in a no-disqualification match. After the match O’Neil turned heel.

After turning his back on the fans, O’Neil urged his friend Percy Watson to do the same. When Watson refused he was attacked by O’Neil leading to a match between the pair which O’Neil won. After the match O’Neil continued to beat down his former friend until Alex Riley made the save.

To combat Riley and Watson, O’Neil teamed with long-time rival Darren Young and the duo defeated Watson and Riley in tag team competition in the weeks following. After the feud with Riley and Watson concluded, O’Neil and Young moved on to feud with The Usos.

Move To The Main Roster; The Prime Time Players

The Prime Time Players

Young with Titus O’Neil as the Prime Time Players

On the 18th April it was announced that O’Neil and Young had been moved up to the WWE’s main roster. They would make their debut on the 20th April edition of Smackdown, where they successfully defeated The Usos. This was the start of a winning streak for the team, as they went on to defeat the likes of Zack Ryder and Santino Marella and Ezekiel Jackson and Yoshi Tatsu.

The winning streak came to an abrupt end on the 18th May edition of Smackdown when the team were defeated by the reigning WWE Tag Team Champions, Kofi Kingston and R-Truth.

On the June 1st edition of Smackdown the team officially named themselves The Prime Time Players.

The newly named Prime Time Players then became the number one contenders for the WWE Tag Team Championships by winning a Fatal-4-Way match at No Way Out. This win came with the assistance of A.W. who turned his back on his current clients Primo and Epico in favour of The Prime Time Players. This led to a feud between the two teams.

As a result of winning the number one contenders match at No Way Out, The Prime Time Players would get a shot at the WWE Tag Team Championships on the July 16th episode of RAW, when the pair lost once again to Kingston and R-Truth.

Not to be deterred, The Prime Time Players defeated Primo and Epico in a number one contenders match after A.W. taunted Kingston and R-Truth into interfering into the match, allowing The Prime Time Players to win the match via disqualification.

The union between The Prime Time Players and A.W. was prematurely ended when A.W. was released from his WWE contract following controversial remarks he made on air.

The Prime Time Players would receive their Tag Team Championship match against Kofi Kingston and R-Truth at SummerSlam, in which they once again were unsuccessful in their attempts to become the champions.

On the September 7th edition of Smackdown, The Prime Time Players once again became the number one contenders for the Tag Team Titles after they defeated both Primo and Epico and The Usos in a triple Threat match. However the following week, they lost their number one contender status when they were defeated by Team Hell No.

At Survivor Series the Prime Time Players were unsuccessful in a 10-Man Elimination Tag Team Match.

The Prime Time Players Split

On August 15th, 2013, Darren Young openly revealed that he was a homosexual in real life. This led to a large increase in fan and professional support, and allowed The Prime Time Players to make an organic face turn.

At the Night of Champions pre-show, the team won a tag team turmoil match, which granted them a shot at the reigning Tag Team Champions later in the evening. Again they were unsuccessful in winning the Tag Team Championships as they lost the match to reigning champions, The Shield.

After losing the match, the team were pushed down the card slightly and began to appear in comedy skits, most notably a hotdog eating contest.

On the 31st January episode of Smackdown, The Prime Time Players took on the team of RybAxel and suffered another loss after Young was pinned. This prompted O’Neil to viciously attack his partner and disband the team.

The pair then entered a short feud with each other, with O’Neil winning the match between the pair at Elimination Chamber. The pair had a rematch on February 26th on Main Event, which was won by Young.

On April 12th, Darren Young was injured in a match with Fandango. On the 16th April, he underwent surgery to repair a torn ACL in his knee, which kept him out of action for several months.

Return; Prime Time Players Reunite; WWE Tag Team Champions

Prime Time Players WWE Tag Team Champions

The Prime Time Players after becoming the WWE Tag Team Champions

On the February 16th edition of RAW, Darren Young and an independent wrestler named Kevin Kross were attacked by The Ascension. During the attack, Titus O’Neil appeared and saved his former partner, thus re-uniting The Prime Time Players.

On February 23rd The Prime Time Players defeated The Ascension on RAW, and handed them their first loss in WWE. They again defeated The Ascension on March 14th.

At Wrestlemania 31, they participated in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal, which was won by the Big Show.

After Wrestlemania, the team again began to perform comedic skits, this time however, they were based more on making fun of other teams in the tag division.

At Elimination Chamber, The Prime Time Players were involved in the first ever Elimination Chamber Tag Team Match. Although putting on a dominant performance and eliminating both The Brass Ring Club and The Ascension, they were ultimately pinned by The New Day.

The following week The Prime Time Players defeated The Lucha Dragons and The Ascension in a triple threat match to become the number one contenders for the Tag Team Championship.

As a result of winning the match, The Prime Time Players would go on to face The New Day for the Tag Team Championships at Money In The Bank. The Prime Time Players won the match to finally capture the Tag Team Championships and embark on their first reign as champions.

At Battleground, The Prime Time Players successfully defended the championships against The New Day.

At SummerSlam, The Prime Time Players lost the WWE Tag Team Championships to the New Day.

Towards the back end of 2015, The Prime Time Players again began pursuing singles careers, but, on December 22, reports appeared, claiming that Young had been put out of action following a quad injury. He denied these reports on Twitter, and then began wrestling on Superstars.

O’Neil and Young would team together occasionally at house shows,

On the Royal Rumble kickoff show, Young teamed with Damien Sandow.

At Wrestlemania 32, Young participated in his third André the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, this time he made it to the final three before being eliminated by Kane.

Bob Backlund; Let’s Make Darren Young Great Again (2016-Present)

On the May 5 episode of Smackdown, WWE legend Bob Backlund agreed to join Darren Young as his life coach, subsequently joining the ‘Make Darren Young Great Again’ campaign, which was an obvious hat tip to Donald Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ campaign.

The following weeks on RAW and Smackdown, saw the airing of vignettes, with Backlund advising Young.

On the July 11 episode of RAW, Darren Young won a Battle Royal to become the number one contender for the WWE Intercontinental Championship at Battleground against The Miz.