Watts describes meeting Caldwell as "life changing"

DETROIT (WXYZ) - The NFL draft is less than a week away, and Lions head coach Jim Caldwell is doing more than getting ready for the season.

He recently spoke at a Detroit Public Schools event about teamwork and integrity. It was a dinner hosted by UAW-Ford, and Caldwell's message hits close to home for one student-athlete.

Students like Sergeio Watts were on hand to hear words of encouragement from Caldwell.

"To me seeing coach Caldwell come here to speak to all of us means a lot not just to me but all of the student-athletes," said Watts, who's a senior at Medicine and Community Health Academy at Cody High School.

Watts describes meeting Caldwell as a "life changing experience."

"You just don’t have to work a 9-5 p.m.," said Watts. "You can be a head football coach or President of the United States."

"You can see when he talks to them he relates to them," said Jimmy Settles Jr., who’s the vice president of UAW-Ford. "He’s on their level. You can sense that by just looking at the kids."

Watts is one of many kids who are inspired by Caldwell becoming the first African-American head coach in Lions history.

"I don't take it for granted; the fact that you know I'm the first here. It's something of note," said Caldwell. "But it doesn't define everything that we do."

"I agree with him when he says you have to set goals when you do anything you do," said Watts. "You have to put your best effort forward and your mind to it to be the best."

"We don’t want to put too much pressure on him [Caldwell] in terms of trying to help us save our kids. He’s gotta save the Lions first," said former Detroit Mayor Dave Bing with a smile.