Simeon Caldwell

Four-Star Safety Has Surprising Tie to Ohio State

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Ohio State is off to a good start with class of 2026 Jacksonville (FL) Bolles School safety prospect Simeon Caldwell and it’s not just because of Caldwell’s interesting tie to the Buckeyes.

The 6-foot-2, 185-pound prospect is the nephew of Ohio State defensive backs coach Tim Walton, but there is more to like about the Buckeyes than just having his uncle on staff.

“Just going up there and seeing the environment that they’ve built up with coach Day and coach Knowles on the defensive side,” Caldwell told on our Southern Swing tour. “When I went up to practice, they had some scuffles but I loved the competitiveness of it. They have the top players like Jeremiah Smith and Caleb Downs and there’s trash talking but at the end of the day it’s all love. Between the lines, they’re enemies but then when they step off the field, they’re best friends.”

One thing that Caldwell has appreciated so far is that Walton isn’t recruiting him like a family member, but rather building a coach/player relationship.

“He told me straight up, ‘we’re not doing the uncle thing’,” Caldwell recalled. “He’s just recruiting me just how he would treat any other person. He’s been doing a great job. He’s been getting all of the top athletes like Devin Sanchez, so he’s doing a great job and I feel like he’s doing the same with me.”

Caldwell’s father, Mike, is a long-time coach in the NFL and currently with the Las Vegas Raiders. Because of that, Caldwell is wide open when it comes to location and distance from Jacksonville won’t be a factor in his recruiting process.

“(Location) isn’t really something that factors with me,” he explained. “My dad is an NFL coach so we’ve moved everywhere. It’s kind of like I’m a military kid. This is only my third or fourth year in Florida. I’m a Florida kid, but it’s not like a true home for me, I lived in New Jersey for a while so I’m used to the cold and everything.”

Hear more from Caldwell on his thoughts about Ohio State, what Tim Walton the Uncle is like, and when he plans to get back to Ohio State in the future.

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