South Carolina, Florida and Cincinnati looked at Joseph as a cornerback and Joseph ended up picking the Mountaineers over them and Tennessee, as well as his hometown school, Central Florida. Joseph liked the Knights and what they were doing, but David Kelly, the assistant coach recruiting Joseph, resigned last November in a recruiting scandal in football and basketball that also claimed the athletic director.
"I think what really changed for me was I knew that program was having problems, but even though Coach Kelly and I were close throughout the recruiting process, it really didn't make a difference because deep down I knew this was the place where I wanted to be," he said. "I had my mind made up before that."
The Mountaineers were excited to see Joseph commit and enroll in January. He jumped into the weight room and got into 7-on-7 drills as often as possible. The head start has him at bandit backing up junior Darwin Cook, who was second on the team with 85 tackles in 2011.
"I'm not saying he doesn't make mistakes or miss tackles or any of that - he does - but from a demeanor standpoint, the effort and the maturity and the physical capabilities of being able to handle it, he is the guy that is going to be fine," Holgorsen said.
But why is it Joseph, one of five true freshmen to enroll in January? Why not fellow Floridian safety Sean Walters, who hasn't been bad and has added 25 pounds so he can adjust to playing the Star position closer to the line of scrimmage?
"You guys tell me," Joseph said.
He doesn't know the answer because he doesn't know any other way to play than the way he has so far.
"I knew I'd be able to compete," he said. "I take football serious. I knew at an early age football was what I wanted to do with my life."
This is just the beginning, too. He doesn't think he's a finished product or even ready to go. He says there are many things he has to learn before he can begin to get them better. He also knows there are now five spring practices left and all of the summer's opportunities for improvement before fall camp. He's more excited to get those started than he is to finish.
"That's the way you've got to do it," he said. "You can't go out there just to get through it. You've got to take it as an opportunity to get better."
Contact sportswriter Mike Casazza at mi...@dailymail.com or 304-319-1142. His blog is at blogs.dailymail.com/wvu.