The team scheduled a luncheon Thursday to make the announcement official, but teammates were already talking about the honour.
"I don't think it will be that much different than last year. The C adds a little bit, but it's just a letter," defenceman Ryan Whitney told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. "He's been a leader and will continue to be. This shows the rest of the league that he has completely arrived."
Crosby, who won't turn 20 until August, led the league in scoring with 120 points (36 goals, 84 assists) in his second season with the team. The team followed Crosby to its first playoff berth since 2001, losing in the first round to the Ottawa Senators.
Crosby, a native of Cole Harbour, N.S., is the youngest NHL captain by about two months. The Tampa Bay Lightning named Vincent Lecavalier captain in 2000, when he was 19 years 11 months old, but later took the title from him.