On Board the Wilson Express

On Board the Wilson Express

Kyle Wilson is flying up draft boards... and rolling in style. Bill Huber brings us the story of a player, his bus, and pre-draft marketing taken to the next level.

Kyle Wilson is taking the express lane to the NFL.

Two things jump out to observers at the Senior Bowl here in Mobile, Ala. One is the play of Wilson, a cornerback on the North squad. The second is the 34-foot RV bearing Wilson's image and Boise State's orange-and-blue color scheme that's stationed in the parking lot.

"When I first saw it, all I said was 'Wow!' That's exactly what I told him," fellow North cornerback Brandon Ghee said. "I said, 'When can I take a ride on your bus?' Everybody's been asking him about it and telling him we need to take pictures in front of it. It's cool. I wish I had a bus."

The bus was the brainchild of Wilson's oldest brother, Gerry. It serves as transportation as he and friends and family drove to all of but one of Kyle's games (the exception being the game at Hawaii) this season. It also serves as tailgating headquarters, postgame meeting place and marketing tool.

"The whole purpose is just for people to be aware that Boise State exists and Kyle Wilson exists," said Gerry, who played cornerback at Princeton. "Then you just watch the videotape, and everything else is self-explanatory. People can decide based upon facts."

The facts are that Wilson was arguably the best cornerback in practice this week. He got better as the week went on, capping it with an almost-spotless performance during a lengthy red-zone period on Thursday. Wilson didn't give up a catch and broke up at least three passes. While some cornerbacks struggle with turning and finding the ball, Wilson does it with his ease. Gerry chalks that up to Wilson being a better offensive player than defensive player in high school.


In a standout group of cornerbacks in Mobile, Wilson played physically, athletically and intelligently.

"I've got an all-around game," he said. "I've got the physical, I've got the ball skills. Whatever anybody's looking for, I've got it. I love playing football and I love competing. Coming out here with the best of them and learning a bunch of new techniques, I'm just soaking it all in and I'm grateful for this opportunity."

Wilson's strong play all week has the scouts hopping on the bandwagon, errrr, RV.

Asked about the RV, Wilson yields a sheepish smile. He's obviously close to his family -- middle brother Vincent played cornerback and safety for Iowa and Delaware -- but he's certainly not one to point attention to himself.

"Kyle's a very low-key kind of guy so he didn't really think too much of it," Gerry Wilson said. "He's not egotistical or anything like that. For him, it was a big surprise. To see the proof in the PDF on your computer is a lot different than a 34-foot RV riding down the street. He was definitely amazed. It's been a great kind of meeting place for everybody to tailgate or go to after the games. It's more of a symbolic gesture for the family than anything else, but a great marketing tool."

Needless to say, Wilson's teammates were impressed and a bit dumbfounded.

"I seen it and I couldn't believe it," cornerback Chris Cook said. "I thought it was Bob Sanders' bus. I didn't know who it was. I seen his picture, and I actually took a picture of it. I wish I had a bus."

The "I wish I had a bus" was a familiar theme from the cornerbacks. And while Kyle Wilson said he didn't get any ribbing over the fancy wheels, Ghee says that's not exactly the case.

"Yeah, we all (give him crap)," Ghee said. "Anytime he says something, we're like, 'I don't have a bus.'"

"I tried to (give him crap), but the bus looks so good, I couldn't talk too much," Cook added. "I couldn't hate on the bus. It's got the perfect color and it's a nice picture."

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