MORGANTOWN, W.Va.– West Virginia University safety Karl Joseph is getting more national attention this week after his stellar performance in the Mountaineers’ opener on Saturday night.
The senior has been named the Jim Thorpe Defensive Back of the Week for week one after snagging a career-best three picks in the Mountaineers 44-0 win over Georgia Southern. He also led WVU with a game-high eight tackles and a fumble recovery.
Joseph’s three interceptions were the most by one player in a game since 1994.
The Jim Thorpe Award is one of the most coveted awards in college football. Each week, Phil Steele will be overlooking the candidates issued by the school, the conference and distinguished committee members.
The award was established in 1986 and is named after one of the greatest all-around athlete, Jim Thorpe. He was an outstanding running back, passer, kicker and defensive back. He also excelled in baseball and won Olympic gold medals in decathlon and pentathlon.
The Jim Thorpe Award is a member of the National College Football Awards Association (NCFAA), which encompasses the most prestigious awards in college football. The 21 awards boast 699 years of tradition-selection excellence.
Joseph beat out Josh Harvey-Clemons of Louisville, Justin Thomas of Utah and Tiguan Lang of Marshall for the defensive end of the week honor.
Harvey-Clemons had a career-high 14 tackles in his first career start for the Cardinals. He also had two interceptions in the loss to Auburn.
Thomas helped Utah beat Michigan last Thursday. His 55-yard interception for a touchdown gave the Utes the boost they needed. He also had four tackles.
Lang had 17 tackles and became just the second player in league history to return two interceptions for touchdowns in the same game in the Herd’s victory over Purdue.
Joseph was also named the Eastern Conference Athletic Conference (ECAC) Defensive Player of the Week for the week ending Sept. 6.