David Wilson August 2014

New York Giants running back David Wilson had his NFL career come to an abrupt, unfortunate end after suffering another serious neck injury. However, it seems like Wilson is at peace with the decision and is now ready to move on to the next phase of his life.

It looks that next phase of his life could still involve athletics. Back in Virginia Tech and high school, Wilson was a two-sport star as he also excelled in track-and-field.

His coach, Charles Foster, called him a fearless competitor, via NJ.com:

During a track practice at Virginia Tech, coach Charles Foster remembered seeing David Wilson veer off from the group to begin sizing up the wooden rafters that stretch from the top of the bleachers all the way to the ceiling of the arena.

The moment of curiosity turned to disbelief as Foster watched the young kid climb them like handlebars without any harness or support. It didn’t take him long to reach the peak of the Cassell Coliseum, where he was hovering more than 100 feet above the wooden basketball court with no remorse.

This was fun for him.

“He said it didn’t bother him at all until he had to figure out a way to get back down,” Foster said this morning.

Foster's point is that Wilson likely still has that competitive spirit and attitude in him, where he can use it for something else. He believes going back to the track-and-field could be the way to go.

“I’ve certainly talked to my colleagues about it,” Foster said. “He will come here in due time and I’m going to advise him. I’ve been one of his closest associates. I’m going to advise him on his options.”

Wilson, according to NJ.com, wasn't exactly known as much as for his speed but his ability to jump.

In track circles, Wilson wasn’t known as a burner among sprinters, but his ability in the long and triple jump was extremely rare. He was a two-time state champion and national champion in high school. In his final track season at Virginia Tech, he finished sixth nationally at the triple jump and was named an All-American. Jumpers typically develop later in life, too, and could hit their peak as late as 28. There is still plenty of time for him to find his form.

“As far as his jumping ability, he can jump out of a gym. He can jump out of a football stadium,” Foster said. “I have a feeling he’s going to come back and talk to me about jumping again.”

Wilson could have the ability to make a huge impact in that field.

John Moon, the legendary track coach at Seton Hall, has scouted Wilson in person a few times and was floored by Wilson’s natural ability. Not only would he bring attention and notoriety to a sport desperate for young stars, but he could contend globally with the proper training and coaching.

“I was like ‘Wow, this guy has moves. He has springs. What an athlete,” Moon said. “You find a guy that can do both long and triple jump, it’s a rare commodity. You don’t find too much of that. Put it this way, he will have a future in track and field if he wants to.”

The transition, of course, from the NFL back to the track will be tough, though.

The transformation would be a project of sorts. From football, Wilson developed hulking shoulders, pectorals and other upper-body muscles. Foster said those would need to change if he wanted to get serious about jumping again. He guessed that, with a doctor’s blessing, the shift could take about a year.

“He has to go back and re-sculpt and get him some track legs again,” Foster said. “He’s going to have to go back to the drawing board and get some running legs. His muscles will need to be reprogrammed for what he needs to do. I’ve certainly spoken to my colleagues about that.”

Foster, however, believes Wilson can make it happen.

“He’s 23 years old, he’s not gonna sit on his butt,” Foster said. “Chances are, I’m going to see him soon.”


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