FORT WORTH – Thursday night following the Mountaineers fourth-straight loss, defensive vocal leader KJ Dillon voiced his emotions on being sick and tired of losing.
“It depends what type of player you is,” he said. “Me? I’m passionate. It’s all I got to my name. It’s all I do so why not love it, even though you took a hit?”
After losing the heart of the Mountaineer defense (Karl Joseph) to a season-ending injury after just four games, Dillon stepped up into that leadership role.
Recognizing that he and the seniors he’s played with for four years only have a few games left, Dillon refuses to let anyone’s spirits sink.
“It’s all about getting up. That’s what I plan on doing,” he said. “I plan on dragging my teammates with me, whether they like it or not.”
West Virginia’s secondary, which started off the season as one of the strongest in the nation, has dwindled down significantly one injury after another.
Dillon was among those injured in Thursday’s defeat. He left the game at one point with what looked to be an aggravated shoulder, but returned shortly after.
“If you wanna play, you’re gonna play,” said Dillon. “I’m banged up but I know I got five games left guaranteed so I’m gonna play. People like that, if you’re passionate about it, you find a way. They gonna have to carry me off the field.”
Because of those injuries, a handful of inexperienced second and third-string players saw the field against TCU. Dillon says there are absolutely no excuses for the mistakes made by he and everyone else on the defense.
“I have to (coach them) more because the people out there are less experienced,” said Dillon. “But practices, camp, and all that, everybody that’s on the field has gotten reps so there’s no excuses. It’s all about doing your job. It’s either you know it, or you don’t.”
Dillon has 24 solo tackles and eight assisted tackles this season plus one interception. In his career at West Virginia, he has over 100 total tackles and four interceptions.
“I’ll be alright for the next game,” he said. “Trust me.”
Quotes in this article courtesy wvusports.com
Cover image credit: Jeff Ruff, BGS