New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson seems to have always had a thing for cougars.
Wilson, 22, took two Cougars – a pair of Brigham Young University cheerleaders – to his high school prom, four years before his ex-girlfriend accused him of sleeping with his mother’s best friend.
A 2018 photo from the high school event showed Wilson smiling coyly as he received a peck on each cheek from his pair of older dates – Breanna Penrod and Brynn Hiatt, who were both Cougars cheerleaders at the time.
Wilson is a Mormon – a religion well known for its promotion of polygamy – and would go on to play football for the Cougars at the Church of the Latter-day Saints sponsored BYU before joining the NFL.
The football star’s ex, Abbey Gile, claimed on Instagram that ‘He was sleeping with his moms best friend… that’s the real homie hopper,’ after she was called out for reports that she was dating his college roommate and best friend, Washington Commanders wide receiver Dax Milne. Wilson and Gile reportedly split in January.
Wilson’s mother, Lisa Neeleman Wilson – sister of multi-millionaire JetBlue founder David Neeleman – has not commented on the matter, and instead reposted a lengthy video on her Instagram in which she characterized social media as being satanic.
‘Satan has found a way to come right into your home and steal your child, without you even noticing,’ she said in the video, ‘The worst part? You let in and you even paid him to do it.
Who Wilson’s lover is remains unknown, but in a 2020 Instagram post his mother wrote that her ‘best friends range in age from 16-75,’ alongside a photo of her with a large group of women she dubbed her ‘tribe.’
She had not responded to DailyMail.com requests for comment at the time of publication.
A 2018 photo from the high school event showed Zach Wilson, 22, smiling coyly as he received a peck on each cheek from his pair of older dates – Brynn Hiatt (left) and Breanna Penrod (right)
Wilson is a Mormon – a religion well known for its promotion of polygamy – and would go on to play football for the Cougars before joining the NFL.
Brynn Hiatt (left) and Breanna Penrod (right). The Brigham Young University Cougars cheerleaders were both Zach Wilson’s dates to his high school prom. They were both in college at the time
Brynn Hiatt (left) and Breanna Penrod (right), perhaps Wilson’s first foray into older women, holding a BYU Cougars sign while cheerleading at a football game
Wilson’s college-aged Cougar prom dates, Brynn Hiatt (left) and Breanna Penrod (right). The pair were both Wilson’s dates to his high school prom
The argument kicked off when Milne posted a picture on his social media of the new couple with the caption: ‘Word on the Street.’
One person commented accusing Gile of being a ‘homie hopper,’ a term denoting someone who breaks up with one person and immediately dates their best friend.
But she fired back with her scandalous accusation, which somebody in the comments backed up, writing ‘Lol, it’s true. I know the best friend’s mom and she freaked out about it for a while.’
Many noted the irony of the accusations against Wilson’s past as a player on a team with the name Cougars.
Jets assistant equipment manager Joe McMahon even jumped in with a shot at Milne, saying ‘Idk what’s going to be the bigger joke this relationship or your NFL career.’
Zach Wilson (right) and Abbey Gile (left). The pair split after Giles said Wilson was sleeping with his mother’s best friend
Giles and Wilson. The pair had apparently been an item since high school . Giles currently attends Utah Valley University
Zach Wilson with his mother, Lisa Neeleman Wilson. Wilson’s ex-girlfriend accused him of sleeping with his mother’s best friend
This is the infamous comment left by Gile where she rejects the accusation of being a ‘homie hopper’
The exact reasons for Wilson and Gile’s split in January was not made public by either party. The pair did scrub each other from their respective social media accounts.
Since then, Gile appears to have removed her Instagram account. According to a 2021 New York Post feature, she and Wilson were an item since high school.
The Post quotes Gile as saying about Wilson following his 20th birthday: ‘He’s the most selfless, kind, hardworking person I know. I’m the luckiest girl in the world and I have no idea what I did to deserve him.’
Wilson characterized himself as ‘A Mormon, an LDS Church member, for sure’ in a 2021 interview with Deseret News, saying ‘I consider myself a really spiritual person,’ and ‘I feel like I have always had a good relationship with God in my life.’ He also said his time at the Mormon sponsored BYU ‘helped me strengthen my relationship with God.’
Giles is currently a student at Utah Valley University in Orem, where she is a member of the school’s dance troupe. Though not an LDS sponsored school, the university offers an extensive Mormon studies curriculum and boasts ‘the largest LDS Institute program in the world,’ according to its website.
Wilson’s current girlfriend is influencer Nicollette Dellanno who boasts over 250,000 followers on TikTok
Dax Milne (left) is now dating Giles. Milne and Zach Wilson were best friend and roommates during their time together at Brigham Young University in Utah
This photo seemingly announced Abbey Gile’s new relationship with Washington Commanders wide receiver Dax Milne
Dax Milne (left) and Zach Wilson (center right) playing football together at Brigham Young University. The pair were roommates in college
This isn’t the first time that Wilson’s mother has made her way into headlines.
In the past few years, she has posted on rants Instagram against mask mandates, promoted Hydroxychloroquine as a Covid-19 cure and supported ex-President Donald Trump.
Neeleman Wilson said in one video in May 2021: ‘Snapchat is for w****s.’ On the platform, she follows popular MAGA celebrities such as Candace Owens and Madison Cawthorn.
In July 2021, she was forced to deny rumors that she had an OnlyFans account saying: ‘I don’t have an OnlyFans account and I have no idea what it is. So if my name is one one it’s fake. Some people need to get a life.’
Wilson grew up in Draper, Utah, as one of his parents six children. His father, Mike, played college ball for the University of Utah in the 1990s.
In the Deseret News feature, Wilson said that his level-headedness and business sense came from his family, including his mother’s JetBlue founding brother.
Zach Wilson and his mother, Lisa Neeleman Wilson. Both are members members of the Church of Latter-day Saints, also known as Mormonism
Wilson’s mother Lisa Neeleman Wilson has made into the news before, such as in July 2021 when she denied having an OnlyFans page
On the day of the allegations about her son, Neeleman posted a lengthy video in which she talked about how important it was to keep children away from social media
In the same article, Neeleman Wilson told the newspaper that her son is a ‘home kid.’ She said that her son loved to spend as much time at home as possible.
She is described in the article as a personal trainer with a burgeoning clothing line in the works.
In the video she posted on the day of the allegations against her son, Neeleman Wilson spoke about an ordeal she and her family went through when she discovered that her teenage daughter was chatting online with an unsavory individual. She said ‘kids make mistakes’ at one point in the video.
In June, Wilson was spotted with TikTok influencer Nicollette Dellanno watching the Yankees play the Tampa Bay Rays in The Bronx.
Dellanno boasts more than 250,000 followers on TikTok. The rumors about Wilson and Dellanno began when they were pictured on Sophia Culpo’s Instagram page.
Culpo is in a relationship with Wilson’s teammate Braxton Berrios.
Wilson suffered through a poor debut season for the Jets with just three wins in 13 appearances, throwing for only nine touchdowns in the process
In June, Wilson told the New York Post: ‘I really do have a lot of confidence in myself. Obviously I think I can be one of the best, and I think if anybody doesn’t say that then they’re not a true competitor’
Wilson suffered through a poor debut season for the Jets with just three wins in 13 appearances, throwing for only nine touchdowns in the process. His contract is worth $35 million per year.
In June, Wilson told the New York Post: ‘I really do have a lot of confidence in myself. Obviously I think I can be one of the best, and I think if anybody doesn’t say that then they’re not a true competitor.’
In their reporting on Wilson’s alleged philandering, Outkick wrote: ‘And just like that the legend of ‘Broadway Zach’ is born,’ a reference to the Jets most famous philanderer ‘Broadway Joe’ Namath.
At the time of writing, there has been no comment from Wilson on the allegation.