Thunder Basin grad Kayden LaFramboise impresses during UW fall camp

Kayden LaFramboise fall camp
University of Wyoming wide receiver Kayden LaFramboise runs through drills during fall camp earlier this month at War Memorial Stadium in Laramie.
Former Thunder Basin High standout Kayden LaFramboise runs the ball during a game Oct. 28, 2022, at Riske Field in Cheyenne.
LaFramboise, who graduated from Thunder Basin High this spring, walked on to the University of Wyoming’s football team this fall. It didn’t take long for him to impress UW coach Craig Bohl and the rest of his staff.
“He made a really good play the first day of practice,” Bohl said last week. “He’s tall, angular and can really run. … It’s always encouraging for me to see guys from Wyoming have a chance. How he progresses is going to be important, but what we’ve seen thus far has been very positive.”
Bohl compared LaFramboise to fellow wide receiver Will Pellisier, who earned the nickname “Big Horn” from Bohl because that’s where he played his high school football.
For LaFramboise, impressing the coaching staff that recruited him to Laramie is what fall camp is all about. Fortunately for the Gillette standout, his plan is already ahead of schedule.
“My first day, I had a really cool play,” LaFramboise told WyoSports last week. “It was my first college catch. It was awesome.
“It was kind of just a go-route, and I guess the (defensive back) must have thought I was running a short route, so I just kept running past him. I caught it, and I wasn’t even thinking about anything else.”
LaFramboise was known for making big plays throughout his career at Thunder Basin. Proving he can do it during a UW practice was validation enough for him to start feeling comfortable in the brown and gold.
“It was a really big confidence-booster for me,” LaFramboise said. “I was thinking, ‘Maybe I’m a walk-on, but I deserve to be here.’ That was a really big, important moment for me.”
UW’s wide receiver room is filled with veteran talent, with 10 of the room’s 15 players returning from a year ago. The camaraderie at the position has already trickled down to LaFramboise going into his first college season.
“The first couple days have just been a ton of learning,” LaFramboise said. “I think the receivers here not only lead by example, but they’re also very vocal and very helpful.
“Usually, you see guys competing for spots, but these guys aren’t like that at all. They’re totally communicating with each other and helping each other out, which has been really awesome.”
LaFramboise told WyoSports in February he committed to UW to better himself as a wide receiver at the Division I level. That process has already begun.
“I think you see yourself compared to (the older wide receivers) when you’re watching film and stuff, and you see how much better you can get,” LaFramboise said. “There’s a lot of really good dudes, and I think I’ve already picked up a lot of new things just from watching them.”
As a freshman, LaFramboise is listed as one of UW’s tallest wide receivers at 6-foot-4, the same height as Alex Brown. Pellisier, who’s listed at 6-foot-3, and Brown have taken it upon themselves to help LaFramboise learn to use his size as a tool for success on the field through the first two weeks of fall camp.
“For me, my size is super helpful,” LaFramboise said. “I’m learning from Alex and some of the other taller guys in the room. It’s just about using that taller body to your advantage.
“Will helped me a lot with blocking with my arms and just ways to position myself to use my height to my advantage. I think my size is going to be way more helpful than I thought it was going to be.”
Brown has also been impressed with what he’s seen out of LaFramboise through the first two weeks of fall camp.
“I think he’s going to be very good,” Brown said. “He’s still a kid. He still moves like a kid. But I think it’ll be good. A lot of the big stuff is there already, it’s just more of him learning what he has to do every play.
“I think he’ll be really good. He moves well down the field, he has extremely long strides. The dude covers 10 yards in like half a second.”
LaFramboise has also grown to admire Ryan Marquez’s work ethic. Marquez spent the past five seasons at UW as a walk-on, and was rewarded for his efforts with a scholarship from Bohl this summer.
LaFramboise is striving to follow a similar path.
“That’s the goal, to get on scholarship,” LaFramboise said. “That’s the reason I’m here.”
With a loaded wide receiver room that also welcomed in transfers Ayir Asante from Holy Cross and Devin Boddie Jr. from Vanderbilt, LaFramboise isn’t expecting to match his 81 catches from his last season at Thunder Basin.
But he is expecting to continue to challenge the defensive backs in practice, making plays when he can to further cement himself as an offensive weapon on the roster.
“This first year is for me to just learn and grow my body,” LaFramboise said. “I think I’ve already put on a lot of weight, and it’s good weight. I think that’s the most important thing for me, just getting as good as I can for next year.”

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