Injuries finally took a toll on Iowa State linebacker Levi Peters, who announced Monday that his five-year football career at Iowa State has now come to a close.
Peters has suffered numerous injuries and undergone many operations during his career, including multiple knee operations before ever arriving in Ames. At Iowa State, Peters twice had surgery on his left foot and later tore his Achilles tendon in his right foot before completing a special teams play.
Peters had contemplated this decision last November, but ultimately waited.
“When the season ended in November I started to think I didn’t have another year in me. I didn’t open up to many people about it. There were many times where it was really hard to walk out of practice because my feet were hurting so bad," Peters said in a statement. "When the new coaching staff came in, it was in my head, ‘OK, I’m coming off of being a captain and I need to be here to help lead these guys through this transition.’ I needed to do everything I could to get everybody through this."
Iowa State completed its four-week winter workouts last week and begins spring practice Tuesday. Given each timeline, Peters recently came to his final conclusion and informed teammates of his decision Monday.
Peters is the second linebacker Iowa State has lost in recent weeks after Luke Knott ended his career ahead of his senior last month due to hip injuries. Iowa State will now rely heavily on linebackers Jordan Harris, Willie Harvery, Reggan Northrup and Jay Jones.
Peters, meanwhile, may still be around this spring.
"I probably had this decision made a while ago, but we were just starting winter workouts, which is our hardest regimen. I didn’t want to say I was in too much pain to be doing this stuff anymore," Peters said. "I love my teammates so much. I love this coaching staff. I love what they are doing to change the culture here. I wanted to try to be a leader during winter workouts and help guys get through it. I wanted to be there participating with them and not just cheering them on, so I finished winter workouts with them."
"I’m going to stick around and do whatever I can to help this team. I will do anything for them, and I wanted them to know that. I need to come to terms with my decision and make a positive out of it."