NORMAN — Quinton Carter always hoped his work at Norman's 12th Avenue KinderCare would continue long after he left OU to pursue his dream of playing in the NFL.
Thanks to Sooner freshman cornerback Julian Wilson, it will.
With Carter in California preparing for the upcoming NFL Draft, Wilson has picked up where Carter left off and been visiting the daycare twice a week to hang out with the kids.
“I just like helping the kids. I want to be a positive role model in their lives,” Wilson said. “It's a lot of work, managing it with school, football, but I got to do what I got to do. I've got to keep this thing going. Can't let it stop.”
The central work in Carter's S.O.U.L. foundation the last three years has been mentoring the kids at KinderCare. Last season, Carter began to wonder if he would be able to pass the torch to one of his younger Sooner teammates. It didn't take long for Carter to find that person.
“Julian really looked up to me on the field,” Carter said. “Once he found out about the charity work I did, he said, ‘Man, I always wanted to do that.'
“So wherever I went, he would come along.”
That included the daycare. It also included a Thanksgiving feast Carter's foundation put on for families in need.
“After that, he saw we were serious about helping others,” Carter said. “It wasn't talk. It was about action.”
That's when Carter put Wilson to the test. To see if Wilson was a man of talk or of action.