Chatarius “Tutu” Atwell came to Louisville from Miami Northwestern high school. Tutu came with all kinds of hype since he played quarterback where another beloved Card, Teddy Bridgewater, played. But Card fans knew he was recruited as an athlete/receiver and wasn’t expected to play QB. It didn’t matter what position he played, fans just wanted to see his speed displayed on the field. The stories of his speed were just crazy including the story that Tutu was undefeated in tag as a child.
He set a Louisville record for most receiving yards (132) in a game by a true freshman, in 2018.
In 2019 he led the nation with four receptions of 70 or more yards. He also led the ACC in receiving yards (1,276), touchdowns (12) and receiving yards per game (98.2). As for UofL records, he set the school record in receiving yards, tied a school record with those 12 touchdowns while tying a school record of seven 100-yard games.
In 2020, the Louisville offense didn’t quite put up the same numbers as 2019 but Tutu still managed to post good numbers while making some spectacular plays. He was the teams leading receiver and averaged 13.6 yards per reception while finding the end zone seven times. Thats pretty solid for only playing in nine games. And I want to clear something up… Tutu did NOT opt out of the last game. He was still injured and the medical team did not clear him to play. I know I read several reports that he opted out but those reports were false. He wanted to play.
Tutu leave Louisville tied for fifth in school history with 21 touchdown catches, ranks fourth with 10 100-yard receiving games, and eighth with 2,307 receiving yards.
Here is our interview…
I want to start by thanking you for taking the time to answer a few questions with me. I also want to thank you on behalf of all Cardinal fans for all your hard work and dedication during your time at Louisville.
CSZ – How difficult was the transition from being a high school quarterback to a D1 college wide receiver?
TA– It wasn’t that difficult. I’d been playing quarterback for a long time since I was growing up but I’m just an athlete so the transition was easy. I had some to work on receiver wise but other than that it wasn’t that hard.
CSZ – . There is a long line of guys from your high school who played in the NFL – Two guys in particular that card fans adore, Teddy Bridgewater and Eli Rogers. Did you get an opportunity to meet either of them while you were in high school and what kind of influence were they on you?
TA – Yea I’ve met Teddy. Teddy is like my mentor. We hang out and work out together a lot. I’ve met Eli a few times too. They are both great mentors, Eli to help with my receiver game but Teddy has been there from the jump since highschool and day 1. We have a great friendship and bond.
CSZ – What was it about coach Satterfield’s offense that helped you put up ridiculous stats in your sophomore year?
TA– Pretty much Coach Satt offense was a great little scheme that he had set up for the team. Basically it runs around the M the position I play, so it was just many ways to get the M the ball and set up for the run and get other wides the ball. Basically I’m like a decoy but I’m still a big part of the offense that the defense needs to worry about.
CSZ – You get one last meal in Louisville – you could go anywhere in the city for free – you can take three teammates with you. Where you going and who you rolling with?
TA – Sapporo and I’m taking Malik, Dez and the whole receiving corp with me.
CSZ – It was reported that Miami didn’t offer you a scholarship because they thought you would only go somewhere that you could play QB. Did Miami ever ask you if you would play receiver?
TA – No. They never took a chance on me. They never even looked at me. Well maybe they did. They sent me a letter one time but it wasn’t an offer letter or anything.
CSZ – Which young receivers currently on the team do you think could have a breakout season next year?
TA – Justin Marshall, Braden Smith and Josh Johnson and also Jordan Watkins.
CSZ – I asked Hawkins this question, so I’m gonna lay it out there for you too. Foot race! – You, Lamar and Javian are all lined up on the goal line.
Who is the first and who is last to run to the 50 yard line?
TA – Me, no doubt. I’m the first. Although Javian got speed on him too. It might be close but I’m going to take it.
CSZ – Anyone would be happy for any opportunity to play for a team in the NFL but do you have a dream team that you would love to play for? Maybe a team you grew up rooting for? (Please don’t say Pittsburgh)
TA –I don’t have one team I grew up rooting for. I have different teams that I played on video games like the Cowboys and the Eagles and the Chiefs. But I would like to go to play for the Chiefs.
CSZ – Your fasted 40 time has been reported in the 4.2’s all the way up to 4.4. I want to get the correct number straight from you, what is your fastest 40 time?
TA – My fastest 40 time is a 4.27 and 4.33. Those are my two fastest.
CSZ – During your college career, what was your favorite uniform combination?
TA – The all red and the black and red.
CSZ – What is your favorite memory from any game in college?
TA – My favorite memory is when I scored against Syracuse, the long 90 yard touchdown.
CSZ – What part of your game do you think you need to work on the most to have a successful NFL career?
TA – Route running and better nutrition.
CSZ – The trend in the NFL is a leaning towards a smaller and faster wide receiver. Since 2013, the average size of the first receiver selected in the NFL Draft was 6-foot, 194 pounds. With that in mind, is Tyreek Hill a guy you want to model you game after?
TA – Yes, for sure!
CSZ – Should Louisville fans be upset that Satterfield listened to an offer from South Carolina? What about the team, should they feel betrayed or upset?
Was his apology satisfactory in your opinion?
TA – No, I don’t think the fans should be mad or upset. I don’t think he did a bad thing. At the end of the day it’s a business, so whatever he did. He told us everything, that he would listen to what they had to say but that he wasn’t going to take the job from the jump. So whether he listened to them or not, he wasn’t going to take the job so the fans and players shouldn’t be mad. People need to understand this is a business.
CSZ – You have the floor to send all the Card fans one last message…
TA – Thank you for letting me attend the University of Louisville and I appreciate you guys and go Cards!
As Always, GO CARDS!