"He's got a great combination of size and speed,'' Dunlap said of Dillon. "He's a lot like Robert Sands was. It's just a matter of how much can he take and how soon can he absorb it all. He's a smaller version, but yeah, both he and Karl Joseph are a lot like Robert was.''
There are, of course, some steps yet to be taken by Joseph. He'd not practiced with the first team until this week, and right off the bat he was thrown into one of WVU's first up-tempo team drills.
Instead of thinking about what he was supposed to be doing with the second defense, he was being asked to react almost without thinking as the first defense went against the hurry-up offense.
"It was the first time we'd run the high tempo in practice, but it was also the first time I'd been with the [first-team defense],'' Dillon said. "Those two mixed together, it was crazy.''
Until then, though, Dillon had been adapting pretty well. The tempo thing will come with more reps.
"When I first saw the defense I was like, 'This is going to be hard to learn,' '' Dillon said. "So yeah, I'm kind of surprised that I've picked it up the way that I have so far. But at the same time I'm not surprised. They had high expectations for me.''
To date, Dillon said his best moments are when he has any degree of success stopping guys like Austin. The worse moments, of course, are when he doesn't.
"How does a guy who just came into college cover Tavon Austin?'' Dillon asked. "It's crazy. You go out and cover him and he gives you one of those moves that you've never seen in your life, it's crazy.
"I've had my battles with Tavon a few times. I lose most of them, but sometimes I win.''
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at Twitter.com/dphickman1.