IOWA CITY (KTIV) — When you’re a 6’5″, 305-pound football player at Iowa, you are noticed. When there are two of you; heads will turn. The Paulsen twins, Landan and Levi, of Moville, Iowa, will play their final home game for the Hawkeyes Saturday.
“I just feel like I poured my heart into this program,”‘ said Levi. “It is going to be a bittersweet moment on Saturday but it will be a lot sweeter when we get the win.”
Levi came into his senior season with three career starts. Landan made his first career start in this year’s season opener. It was the first time twins had started for the Hawkeyes in nearly 40 years.
“As a Hawkeye, from the moment you walk in here you hear all about these stories about leaving the jersey in a better place and what that means,” said Levi. “I’ve owned that jersey for four or five years now. Once it’s over you just hope that the next person that takes the reins of number-66 does exactly what they’re supposed to do and that’s leave it in a better place.”
he brothers have been named to five All-Big Ten Academic teams between them and already have their undergraduate degrees. They’re two of 19 seniors playing their last game at Kinnick Stadium.
“It’s always a special thing,” said head coach Kirk Ferentz. “And, as always, I have such respect for the guys that run the entire race, that stay here and fight through the adversity they go through, whether it’s academically, injury-wise, all the things that are challenging about being a student-athlete at this level.”
The Paulsen’s didn’t shed tears five years ago on senior day at Woodbury Central. This time, it’s a game time decision.
“So hopefully he goes out there and cries and I just look at them and think they’re funny,” said Levi. “I hope I have it out of me but you never know. It’s an emotional day but we’re going to try and put it behind us. We’ve seen it before and it is tough. But the mindset really is on Illinois and that’s what’s important.”
Landan is listed as Iowa’s starting left guard on Saturday. The Hawkeyes and Illini kickoff at 11:00 am at Kinnick Stadium.