Stranger in a less strange land: Danny Laudet
After spending his youth in France playing Soccer, Danny Laudet and his family moved to Stillwater Minnesota. Last week Laudet was instrumental in a big win, playing in his first American football game.
Chris Husby runs the Special Teams Football Academy and earlier this year he gave me a call and said the had an interesting story for me. He noted that he had been working with a young player who and moved to Minnesota from France and was just learning to play as a kicker in American football. He told me the kid had natural talent and a great attitude.
I stopped by a training session with Husby and Laudet and liked what I saw. Laudet is a big rangy kid with a winning smile and a disarming attitude. He can also kick the ball. I followed up with a couple more stories and decided to track his play.
Last week he played in his first game, and helped his team win a narrow victory with an onside kick. I talked to Laudet following the game and he was beyond thrilled.
"well, I took an onside kick like Coach asked, but the ref goes, 'you went to early do it again,' so I did and it was just perfect. Everybody went wild! Matt Ogren, #6 on my team made a crazy dive on the ball and got it...
It was so awesome and the last minutes were just so intense. I had the time of my life, the guys on my team said it's the first time they heard the crowed chant for a kicker."
It's easy to see that Laudet is thriving in his new home, as is his family. His sister, Elise, is a budding photographer and does a great job capturing her big brother's efforts and accomplishments. For the Laudet's football has certainly made the move to America a natural and easy one.
Laudet, is getting some college looks and he just may have to the opportunity to play his adopted sport at a higher level...