MORGANTOWN — West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen announced Wednesday that senior All-American safety Karl Joseph sustained a right knee injury in a non-contact drill Tuesday during practice and will miss the remainder of the season.
One of the greatest Mountaineers to ever wear the Gold and Blue, Joseph has started all 42 games of his career and logged an incredible 3,388 plays, including 2,980 on defense. He has produced 284 tackles, including 209 solo stops, 16.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, nine interceptions, 14 pass breakups, eight forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries.
“I am devastated and heartbroken for Karl,” Holgorsen said. “He is a young man who has given everything he has to our football program and University over the past four years and who elected to return to WVU for his senior season to earn his degree and to be a part of something special with this team. He exemplifies what it means to be a Mountaineer. Karl is an All-American, a fierce competitor, a leader and I know he will have a full recovery, and I can’t wait to watch him on Sundays next fall.”
Joseph, a first team All-Big 12 performer in 2014, is known nationally for his hard-hitting and aggressive defensive ability. He was having an outstanding year to date, playing at an All-American level, leading the nation in interceptions (5), No. 23 in passes defended and No. 27 in fumbles recovered. This season, he is No. 2 on the Mountaineer defense in tackles with 20, including 15 solo stops. He also has a sack, two tackles for loss, a pass breakup and a fumble recovery.
“I want to thank my teammates and my coaches for their outpouring of support,” Joseph said. “This has been difficult for me and my family but I know I will come through this stronger than ever. I will forever be a Mountaineer and will be cheering on our team every step of the way.”
Joseph was named National Player of the Week by the Football Writers Association of America, Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week and the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in game one against Georgia Southern. He was awarded the game ball by Holgorsen after putting up eight tackles, had three interceptions in the third quarter and recovered a fumble.
He finished second the team with 92 tackles as a junior and led WVU as a sophomore with four fumble recoveries, ranking No. 2 nationally. He also had 68 tackles, five pass breakups and three tackles for loss. Joseph was named a freshman All-American and WVU’s Defensive Player of the Year in 2012 after leading the Mountaineers in tackles (104), solo tackles (76) and tied for the team lead in forced fumbles (3) and interceptions (2).