By Mickey Furfari
MORGANTOWN — Michael Joseph now is West Virginia University’s new director of strength and conditioning.
Athletic Director Ed Pastilong made the official announcement on Wednesday after paperwork on his appointment was completed.
Joseph, a Fairmont native, comes to WVU from Notre Dame, where he served as an assistant in strength and conditioning for five years.
He will administer, coordinate, develop, implement and teach strength and conditioning for all Mountaineer student-athletes with a major emphasis on football, according to WVU associate athletic director for finance and administration Russ Sharp.
Sharp, who served as search committee chairman, said Joseph is well qualified for the position.
“We conducted a national search with many excellent candidates and tremendous interest,” he stated. “Michael brings knowledge of the program, exceptional credentials, a great attitude and tremendous recommendations.
“We are all looking forward to his getting started here at WVU.”
Joseph said, “I grew up around West Virginia athletics and went to school there, so I am extremely excited to be able to come back home for a dream job.
“West Virginia is one of the best in the nation, both academically and athletically, and I am very impressed by the administration’s commitment to each. Especially over the past few years, the athletic program has become one of the elite programs in the nation.”
He’s admittedly looking forward to working with each student-athlete and team and trying to advance them to a higher level.
While at Notre Dame, Joseph has worked with football and was responsible for the strength and conditioning programs for baseball, volleyball and softball.
Bill Stewart, who was named WVU’s new head football coach on Jan. 3, thinks the Mountaineer family is thrilled to be able to attract such a highly qualified person in his field.
“We believe he is the finest young strength coach in the country,” he said.
“Having worked with Mike earlier in his career at WVU, I know he has proven he not only has the knowledge to be successful in the position, but has the character and integrity that we want here
“Not only will he be an outstanding coach for our football program, but the entire group of student-athletes and coaches will benefit from his experience.”
At Notre Dame, Joseph worked with the head strength coach with football, assisting with workouts, testing, conditioning, speed and agility training in-season and off-season. He also had the same responsibilities in baseball, volleyball and softball.
In addition, his duties included supervision and maintenance of the facility and equipment and scheduling of all student-athletes for the school’s 27 sports.
Before going to Notre Dame, Joseph spent two years as an assistant strength coach at Eastern Michigan, where he was responsible for the strength and conditioning programs for men’s and women’s basketball, baseball, volleyball and wrestling and also had duties in football.
Joseph was a graduate assistant at WVU for two years (1999-2001), working with football, men’s and women’s basketball, volleyball and baseball. He also had a variety of other duties while here.
He worked at HealthWorks Fitness and Rehabilitation in Morgantown during the summer of 2001. He also served as a camp instructor at the Mountain State Speed and Strength Camp hosted by WVU from May 2000 until April 2001.
Joseph served as strength and conditioning coach at Fairmont State from August 1998 to May 1999. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in biology there and also has a master’s degree from WVU in physical education with an emphasis in sport movement and development.
He was a four-year letterman and three-year captain of the Falcons in football (1994-97). He was a three-time first-team all-West Virginia Conference selection and earned numerous honors, including WVC Offensive Player of the Year in 1996.