- - Friday, December 16, 2011

BLACKSBURG, Va. — Virginia Tech junior running back David Wilson is on the verge of realizing a lifelong dream of playing in the NFL. But he has to decide whether he wants to go pro this year or wait until after his senior season.

His father said he thinks he should choose the NFL now.

“I think he should go, personally, but I haven’t told him that yet,” Dwight Wilson said in a phone interview on Friday.

Wilson has spoken to his son at length about his football future, but he has never told him what he should do. He said it’s up to David to make that decision.

He has a strong feeling about where his son is leaning.

“I think he’ll probably go ahead and go,” Wilson said. “He didn’t tell me. Honestly he didn’t, but that’s just my opinion. I think he’s going to go.

“I’d say it’s a real high percentage that he will go, but it’s up to him. I’ll just be glad he doesn’t come back home.”

As recently as last Saturday, David Wilson said he was torn between staying for his senior season and declaring for the draft. He was singing a different tune during an interview Thursday.

“I’m still thinking about both, but I kind of know what I want to do,” he said.

Wilson, the ACC Player of the Year and a second-team All-American, seemed much more certain about his football future, but he said he would not make his intentions known until after the Jan. 3 Sugar Bowl.

Wilson, who has rushed for 1,627 yards and nine touchdowns this season, still hasn’t received his paperwork back from the NFL’s draft advisory board, which evaluates an underclassmen’s draft stock and projects where he might be selected.

But there’s plenty of information out there to indicate Wilson could be drafted high.

ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay lists Wilson as a potential first-round pick, and NFL.com ranks him second among all draft-eligible running backs.

Despite the lofty projections, Hokies running backs coach Shane Beamer thinks Wilson could benefit from another year of college.

“I think it would be great for him as a player and then off the field to be more prepared and more ready for that level [in the NFL],” Beamer recently said. “Having said that, he’s got to do what’s best for his family.”

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