Laurel twins are doubletrouble for opponents

By 
Joe Kusek
Thursday, September 15, 2022
Identical twins (from left) Gus and Will Robertus are captains for the Laurel football team. Photo by Joe Kusek

Identical twins (from left) Gus and Will Robertus are captains for the Laurel football team. Photo by Joe Kusek

The hair.

It is the easiest way to tell them apart when out of uniform.

“Mom wanted us to get haircuts for pictures but he said no,” said Gus Robertus, tossing a glance to his brother Will.

Will, older by two minutes, has the longer hair.

The identical twins share more than a mirror image.

Both are good students. Both are friendly with Gus a bit more talkative, which goes with his position on the football field. Both prefer country music with some rock and rap on their listening lists. They offer a firm handshake in greeting and both have worked for their father Sam’s landscaping business.

The two tried to switch places on a teacher in class. “It didn’t go very far,” they said almost simultaneously.

The brothers got their own bedrooms after older sister Zoey moved out of the home. The brothers plan to attend college but have not decided on a field of study.

The pair are also physical twoway starters for the Laurel football team. Will is the lone returnee on the offensive line while Gus plays quarterback. Both play linebacker on defense.

They offer more than physical skills on the field. Well respected by their teammates and coaching staff, they are also two of four captains selected for this season.

“Just their consistency,” said Laurel head coach Mike Ludwig of the pair’s strength. “You can count on them. I can count on them and their teammates can count on them.”

And they have always been able to count on each other.

“You always have somebody around,” said Will.

“It’s like having a friend around. It’s good having a twin,” Gus added.

Will, a left guard, is leader on the Locomotives offensive line for an offense that had to replace nine starters from a year ago.

“Will, he knows more of the offense. He’s a bit more experienced,” said Gus. Gus is one of those who reaps the benefit, running the football behind his brother.

“He’s got a strong arm,” said Will of Gus. “When he goes, he hits the hole hard.”

Both share a penchant for contact.

“Depends,” answered Gus of preferring playing on offense or defense. “I like offense … but I do like to hit people.”

“I like the physicality of it,” Will replied.

Both stand 5-foot-9 with Will listed as 35 pounds heavier.

“I get his hand me downs after he grows out of them,” said Gus.

Their mother Sharon allowed them to develop their own identities.

“Mom tried to keep us different,” Will said.

“She never dressed us identical,” continued Gus.

Sharon Robertus made it easy for family and friends.

“Will wore red and Gus wore blue,” recalled Camden Johnson, long-time classmate and current teammates.

Not overly superstitious, the pregame preparation differs for the Robertus brothers.

Gus prefers to sit in silence before the game. “I like to prepare myself,” he said.

Will’s concerns are more sartorial.

“I always wear the same T-shirt under my shoulder pads. It’s a camp T-shirt,” he said.

Pause. “I wash it,” he added. While different, both have matching work ethic. Both put the time in during the summer in preparation for this season.

“Just getting better,” said Will. “I didn’t play a lot of defensive line last year, I have to keep working, And I’m blocking 10 times better.”

Gus had his own list. “A lot of things,” he said. “Being a leader, working on ball accuracy. You’re always trying to get better.”

After having them in class, Ludwig can identify each.

“In practice, it’s easier now to tell them apart,” said the head coach. “Before, I would see them in the hallway or in class, I couldn’t tell them apart.

“They’ve been around for a while, If I mess up, it’s on me.”

Both said the best part of football is “Hanging out with your buddies.” But both want to keep Laurel among the upper echelon of Class A teams.

“There is a lot of pressure,” said Will. “We have to work hard in practice. We have to keep the intensity high.”

Gus agreed. “Hard work,” he said of the key to 2022. “Team work, that’s a big one. If you’re not working as a team, you’re not getting anywhere.”

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