The University of Tennessee officially announced that former defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell is returning to the program as the Assistant Director of Life Skills and Character Development on Tuesday Evening.
Caldwell was hired as the defensive ends coach at Tennessee by Phillip Fulmer in 1995 and served in that role until 2008— when Fulmer was forced to step down as head coach of Vols after a disappointing start to the season. In addition to coaching the defensive ends, Caldwell coached Tennessee’s special teams from 2000-2005.
In his new role in Tennessee’s Athletic Department, Caldwell will serve in a counseling type role, as the University of Tennessee states that he will, “implement and manage strategic development plans for incoming football student-athletes as they transition to campus life and high-level intercollegiate athletics.” The University’s statement went on to read, “(Caldwell’s job) centers on providing mentoring and guidance as it relates to academics, athletics, life skills, personal and professional growth and social responsibilities on campus and throughout the community.”
Caldwell’s coaching career also included stops at Arkansas State, Nevada, Ole Miss, Arkansas, and Boise State— where his coaching career came to an end after the 2017 season. During his career, Caldwell was a part of 2 National Championships— including the Vols’ in 1998— and his experience simply speaks for itself.
Even though Caldwell will not have a large role for the University of Tennessee, it just seems right for him to return to Rocky Top after all of the time and dedication he spent in Knoxville. After all, we will leave you with Caldwell’s own words when he was asked about returning to Tennessee: “I’m truly a Vol For Life.”