NASHVILLE, Tenn. – As a teenager at Long Beach Poly High School, Jurrell Casey attracted college coaches to the school's campus, and into his home.
One of them was Pete Carroll, head coach at the University of Southern California at the time.
The two hit it off, and it was the start of a relationship that became much bigger in time. Back then, Casey was known as "Tut-Tut," his childhood nickname given to him by his aunt, who said he used to walk like a turtle. The moniker followed him to USC, where Casey played three seasons.
"Every time (USC) came to visit, whether it was school, home, whatever, that's what they called me, Tut-Tut," Casey said with a smile. "Nobody called me by my real name. So the first day I got to school (at USC), I'm thinking they're going to call me Casey or whatever. And then, first thing: "Hey, Tut-Tut!" So I thought, I guess they're going to ride with this.
"… Coach Pete is my man. He was a great coach. I enjoyed playing for him, an 'SC guy, so I love him. But not this week."
Casey, a four-time captain and two-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman with the Titans, will see Carroll again on Sunday when the Seahawks face the Titans at Nissan Stadium. The two got a chance to catch up following a game in Seattle in 2013.
Carroll, speaking on a conference call on Wednesday, said he's proud of Casey, a third-round draft pick by the Titans in the 2011 draft who has played in 96 games, recording 471 tackles and 33 sacks along the way.
"Well I take him all the way back to Long Beach Poly and watching him as an inside linebacker and a guard," Carroll, who coached from 2001-09 at USC before taking over as head coach at Seattle in 2010, said of Casey. "He was a terrific high school football player and we were lucky to get him at 'SC. He had a great career, he's just continued to excel and do great things. He's had a great pro career, being in the Pro Bowl and all that. I'm really fired up for him.
"He's a great kid. You may not know him, his nickname is 'Tut-Tut,' you can ask him about that. It'll be fun to see him."
TitansOnline.com looks back at the all-time series against the Seattle Seahawks. (AP Photos)