It turns out there is another level of speed we didn’t know about.
There’s fast, blazing fast and finally Tutu Atwell fast.
On a field loaded with elite speedsters, Northwestern’s star quarterback, committed to play receiver at Louisville next year, displayed his extra gear on a pair of dazzling touchdown runs Friday night, leading the Bulls to a 14-7 win over longtime rival Booker T. Washington at Traz Powell Stadium.
“I don’t think we’ve seen him run his fastest yet,” Bulls coach Max Edwards said. “I think right now he’s got a little more in him. But I’m just happy to get this victory from a good program like Booker T.”
Atwell (5-9, 158) electrified the crowd when he ran around and through the Tornadoes defense on fourth and goal from the BTW 23 for a touchdown with 4:30 left in the opening quarter.
On Northwestern’s next possession, he did it again on third down and four, escaping the pocket and racing 56 yards down the field for a score with 11:03 left in the half.
The way the Class 6A top-ranked Bulls (3-0) played defense it turned out to be just enough to pull out the win.
In their first game since Sept. 1, after Hurricane Irma halted high school football action throughout South Florida, the Bulls picked off Tornadoes quarterback Daniel Richardson four times including three times in the fourth quarter to lock up its third win in a row in the series.
Florida Gators recruit and senior Divaad Wilson had two of the picks. Larry Robbins picked off Richardson at the Bulls 12 with 3:30 left and then Jermaine Williams sealed the win with an other interception of a deflection inside the Bulls 20 with four seconds remaining.
“I think I have one of the best secondaries in the nation,” Edwards said. “These guys play, work hard, and they all ran track so that starts to pay off.”
Booker T., ranked No. 1 in Class 4A along with defending state champion Cocoa, played its first game since losing 19-17 on Aug. 31 to Miami Central, which is ranked No. 2 in the state in Class 6A.
Richardson threw a five-yard TD pass to Jovan Ferguson late in the third quarter to trim Northwestern’s lead to 14-7 and finished 22 of 34 passing for 123. But he could never get the ball downfield and the Bulls made the big plays when it mattered late.
“I would not have had those picks if it wasn’t for the defensive line,” Wilson said. “Those guys put a lot pressure on him and forced him to throw the ball. We’re good. We feel we’re the best defense in the nation.”