Northwestern WR Elijah Caldwell (6-1 190) is the latest standout from South Carolina’s football city, Rock Hill, to commit to USC. Caldwell announced his commitment today picking the Gamecocks over NC State. Caldwell originally committed to West Virginia but decommitted in December.
Some of Caldwell’s other offers were from Georgia Tech, Purdue, East Carolina, Duke, Appalachian State and Middle Tennessee State.
Caldwell played for the South Carolina Shrine Bowl game and had four catches for 61 yards in the game. It was the hours and days following the game that USC receivers coach Justin Stepp really picked up the recruiting intensity with Caldwell.
“He (Stepp) told me he loves the way I play,” Caldwell said. “The offensive coordinator (Dowell Loggains) said they love the way I play and how aggressive I am. They really think I can be a game changer and play in the state I’m from.’
Caldwell caught 77 passes for 1365 yards and 20 touchdowns this past season. Northwestern coach Page Wofford said Caldwell will bring a number of positive attributes to the Gamecocks.
“I think his desire to win, his desire to do well and use the talents that he has,” Wofford said. “He’s a big, strong, physical receiver that we could put anywhere we wanted to. He could change the score from anywhere because he usually broke the first tackle. He was someone we could get the ball in his hands and where was he going to go from there. When he found open space, he was going to score. He wasn’t going to get run down. And his ability to block, he was out there blocking doing the little things. And his leadership as well will be missed.”
Caldwell gives the Gamecocks five wide receivers in their group of 2023 newcomers which now totals 32. He’s also the eighth recruit with ties to the state to pledge to the Gamecocks.