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Don't Be Fooled, This Is One Mean Musical Act

Posted Apr 30, 2011

Julian Vandervelde sang the national anthem for President Barack Obama last March during an appearance in Iowa City. He also sang for the President Bill Clinton and his wife, Hillary, a few years back.

But he doesn’t want to make a name for himself as a singer.

"I’ve done some big things there, but hopefully my football career will overshadow my singing career here pretty soon," Vandervelde said.

Vandervelde was drafted as the 161st overall pick in the fifth round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles on Saturday.

"Of all the teams that I had a feeling about, they were definitely at the top of my list," Vandervelde said. "I could not be happier than I am right now."

The 6-3, 300-pound guard started all the games during his four-year career at Iowa. A three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree, Vandervelde majored in both English and religious studies, and minoring in Japanese. Vandervelde speaks three languages and says he wants to one day move to Nagasaki, Japan and help rebuild the Christian community that was destroyed by an atomic bomb in World War II.

Vandervelde was the second interior offensive linemen drafted by the Eagles this year as the team selected Baylor guard Danny Watkins with its first-round pick. He looks forward to the challenge of making his mark in the NFL.

"It’s always going to be an uphill battle when you’re moving up to the next level," Vandervelde said. "The Eagles have a great offensive line, lots of guys who have plenty of experience … That’s the sort of thing you have to embrace when you’re doing something like moving into the NFL. You have to be able to look at the challenge and the uphill battle and looking it square in the teeth and be ready to knock those teeth out.

"I really feel like I can come in and contribute and have a lot of success with the team."

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