RALEIGH — N.C. State's Russell Wilson still can't decide if he wants to play football or baseball, so he plans to continue to do both.
In fact, Wilson's baseball future is with the Colorado Rockies, after they chose him in the fourth round of the Major League Baseball draft on Tuesday. Wilson said he will still play football for the Wolfpack this fall but only after he signs with the Rockies and spends the summer in their minor league system.
"I love them both, and that's why I play them both," Wilson said Tuesday.
Wilson said the Rockies know his situation and he was confident they would allow him to continue his football career.
"We've talked about it, and we'll continue to talk and figure this thing out," Wilson said.
A spokesman for the Rockies declined to comment on Wilson's situation.
As a fourth-round pick, No. 140 overall, Wilson can expect a signing bonus of about $250,000, according to Baseball America's John Manuel.
It's not unprecedented for baseball teams to allow prospects to play college football, Manuel said, citing Drew Henson, Ricky Williams and former North Carolina quarterback Mike Thomas as examples of former college football players who have done both.
"The trend in the last decade, though, is to buy the player out of their football commitment," Manuel said.
Wilson has experienced more success in football, leading the ACC in touchdown passes (31) in 2009 and a first-team All-ACC selection in 2008, than in baseball, but his professional prospects project to be better in baseball.
Wilson said he would figure out his future "down the road," for now he plans on to continue to juggle both sports.
"It's all going to work out just fine," Wilson said.
He started 25 games in the outfield for the Wolfpack this season, hitting .306 in 47 games and he also had an 0-1 record with 5.84 earned run average in 10 pitching appearances with one start.
This is the second time Wilson has been selected in the MLB draft. He was taken out of high school in the 41st round by the Baltimore Orioles but chose to come to N.C. State to play both football and baseball.
He has two seasons of eligibility remaining in football and one in baseball. By signing with the Rockies, his college baseball career would be over. He doesn't know if he'll return for his senior season in football in 2011.
"I'm not worried about that right now," Wilson said. "I try to focus on one thing at a time."
Draft prospects have until Aug. 16 to sign - and most in the top picks will wait until the deadline to negotiate - but Wilson indicated he'd like to get a deal settled with the Rockies and get to work as soon as possible.
N.C. State's football practice begins Aug. 3 and coach Tom O'Brien said on Tuesday that he expects Wilson to join the team then. O'Brien said the details of Wilson's summer schedule still need to be worked out.
"There are lots of things that have to be discussed," O'Brien said. "One thing I do know about Russell, if he wants to play football, then that's what he's going to do."
The Rockies have a history of taking quarterbacks. Their starting lineup includes two former college QBs - first baseman Todd Helton (Tennessee) and left fielder Sam Smith (Ole Miss) - and they took Clemson's Kyle Parker in the first round of this year's draft.
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