MORGANTOWN - The real tests, of course, remain two weeks in the future and then beyond. But as far as the progress of West Virginia's redesigned and reconstituted defense is concerned, Joe DeForest seems like a pretty happy guy after two-plus weeks of fall camp.
The Mountaineers concluded the pre-classes portion of their preseason Saturday and, at least in the eyes of the team's new defensive coordinator, a few questions about the biggest area of concern for the team - that reworked defense - have been answered.
"No question, I'm satisfied,'' DeForest said. "We're exactly where I thought we would be.''
For the next two weeks, the Mountaineers will put the finishing touches on the preseason and then begin working toward the Sept. 1 opener against Marshall. The offense doesn't seem to be much of an issue. Even with quarterback Geno Smith away for the weekend because of the death of his grandmother, that offense is of little concern.
The defense began August drills not only looking for freshmen who could step in and contribute, but continuing to install the schemes first presented to the team in the spring.
DeForest said he likes the way all of it has gone.
"There have been some players that have risen to the top,'' he said. "We have so much healthy competition. The guys are fighting for playing time. That's something that we talked about in the spring. All of the jobs are open and they're fighting their tails off. Overall, we got most of the package in and we're in good shape.''
The biggest task remaining perhaps is narrowing down just who will play. For the most part, the top 11 to 15 are pretty clear-cut.