TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Marvin Wilson has been a household name for college football fans since February of 2017, when he signed with the Seminoles on national television and proclaimed his love for the honey-fried chicken served on Florida State’s campus.
Come next week, Wilson will meet a broader audience.
A junior defensive tackle from Houston, Texas, Wilson is one of two players hand-picked by coach Willie Taggart to represent FSU at ACC Football Kickoff – otherwise known as “media days.”
Wilson, Taggart and receiver Tamorrion Terry will all travel on Wednesday to Charlotte, N.C., where they’ll go through a gauntlet of interviews, photoshoots and whatever else the assembled reporters from around the country can think of.
“Being selected to be one of the ambassadors for the team and represent the ACC, it feels good,” Wilson said.
Wilson intends to look good, as well.
After his Friday-morning workout, Wilson put the finishing touches on his ACC Kickoff attire – a custom suit complete with a bright red bowtie and pocket square.
And, given Wilson’s 6-foot-5, 314-pound frame, Wilson’s tailor had his work cut out for him.
“It’s going to be really ‘drippy,’” Wilson said with a big smile. “I’m going to have the drip, the sauce and everything for everybody.
“They’re not going to be ready. They’ve never seen a big dude dressed like me.”
Wilson, though, intends for media and fans to see far more than a sharp-dressed big man.
In his mind, ACC Kickoff is the first chance for the public to see the new Florida State football team.
To see, as he put it, that “we mean business this year.”
Wilson knows what’s coming in Charlotte. He expects plenty of questions about last season, about what went wrong for the Seminoles and why he thinks things will be different in 2019.
Wilson is ready for them.
“I’m prepared for it,” he said. “Everybody wants to talk about last year and keep us in that little lull. But we’re already past it. We’re going to show everybody that we’ve been past it.”
Wilson figures to be a big part of the Seminoles’ steps forward.
An honorable-mention All-ACC selection a year ago, Wilson in 2019 is a preseason All-American (Phil Steele, Athlon) and one of the anchors of what Florida State hopes will be an improved defense in Year 2 under coordinator Harlon Barnett.
Despite playing a position that doesn’t typically rack up gaudy statistics, Wilson had the sixth-most tackles among FSU’s returning defenders, and his 3.5 sacks were second only to first-round pick Brian Burns.
Burns, incidentally, represented Florida State at last year’s ACC Kickoff along with running back Cam Akers. And Wilson, then getting ready to enter his sophomore season, was taking notes.
“I started paying attention last year,” he said, “watching them go through the process, just having fun with it, taking advantage of the opportunity to go out and introduce themselves to the world before the season even started.”
Wilson plans to do the same. And, with his head coach and teammate by his side, he plans to make clear Florida State’s intentions for the upcoming campaign.
“This is the first time that we get to show some of the key faces of our program,” Wilson said, “with ‘Coach Tagg,’ me and Tamorrion going up there to set the tone, and give everybody the alert that we’re coming and we’re coming for everybody else.”