Virginia Tech offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring was in the middle of discussing his unit’s struggles during Saturday’s open scrimmage when he was cut off by the sound of screeching tires behind him.
“Is that my son,” Stinespring asked.
This reporter then responded, “No, it’s one David Wilson,” showing off the acceleration capabilities of his new Ford Mustang in a back alley near the Hokies’ practice field. Stinespring moved on to talking about the pistol formation Virginia Tech’s offense unveiled Saturday when he was again interrupted by Wilson, who was putting on his own drag-racing exhibition to the delight of a group of teammates.
“He’s not even here and he’s still grinding me,” Stinespring finally said with a laugh.
The always-entertaining Wilson was in town Saturday to see just how the Hokies would look without him on the field, a rare break from training for the NFL draft and visiting with prospective teams. But he also took some time to talk with reporters about a process that is now reaching its final weeks with the 2012 draft less than three weeks away.
Wilson decided to forgo his senior season at Virginia Tech following the Sugar Bowl after setting a school record with 1,709 yards and earning ACC player of the year honors. He’s considered one of the top three or four running back prospects this year, but after some initial projections listed Wilson as a potential first-round pick, his stock seems to be falling a bit.
Last week, ESPN’s Mel Kiper and Todd McShay both had Wilson had a late second-round selection even though reports indicated that he improved his 40-yard dash time during Virginia Tech’s pro day last month.
Wilson said Saturday he has already visited with the Cleveland Browns and Tampa Bay Buccaneers and he will travel to San Francisco to spend time with the 49ers this week. Like many players at this point in the draft process, Wilson is trying to avoid the daily predictions of analysts and instead focus on what he’s hearing from team personnel.
“To any team that I go to, I think that I offer a lot as far as my speed, my hands out the backfield, return game, special teams,” Wilson said. “I like to use the word variety. When you get me, you’re getting a lot of variety, so just put me out there and I’m ready to make plays or help the team win.”
Wilson added that he has not yet received an invitation to go to New York for the draft like Ryan Williams did a year ago, and at this point he’s planning to watch from home in Danville, Va., with his family.
On Saturday, though, he was paying close attention to freshman tailback J.C. Coleman, one of several potential successors who also happens to be the player wearing Wilson’s old No. 4 jersey these days.
“A lot of players wore that number, and a lot of them play well in it,” Wilson said. “I don’t know if it’s the number or the people that wear the number, but it’s a good number to have.”
Befitting his reputation as one of the more upbeat players to ever step on the practice field at Virginia Tech, Wilson admitted he has a constant itch to play football again and it likely didn’t help watching his former teammates on the field Saturday.
As always, though, he seems to be enjoying himself.
“The whole thing has been one big memory and it’s fun. None of it I look back and like, ‘That was so whack or boring.’ I’ve been enjoying the whole thing,” Wilson said. “Going to visit, teams fly me out, meeting a lot of people – a lot of pro athletes and people I watch on TV — and they all have good things to say about me.”