LARAMIE -- The start of Omar Stover's college career was, admittedly, a little hectic.

Even if the biggest adjustment may have been getting used to the altitude.

"It was like the ground was moving," the Bolingbrook, Ill., product said of those first few days training at 7,200 feet.

For early-enrolled freshman, there is always an adjustment to college life in the spring semester. Stover and freshman defensive tackle James Diamanti are Wyoming's two early-enrolled freshmen right out of high school this spring.

"It was a little fast-paced, as far as the classes, going to practice, getting used to the schedule," Stover said on Friday. "But I was ready for it. I knew it was going to be tough, just transitioning from high school to here."

Stover, though, has had one key aide in the transition: competition. In theĀ  Cowboys' initial spring depth chart, Stover was listed as a co-starter with sophomores D.J. May and Shaun Wick as part of Wyoming's three-headed running attack. In the two full scrimmages this spring, Stover has carried for 127 yards on 25 carries. The 5-foot-11, 192-pound back has also benefited from the fact that senior Brandon Miller has sat out spring camp with an injury, but said the camaraderie of the running back group has helped him feel comfortable after just a few months.

"It's a competition, but yet we're still bonding, we're still great teammates," Stover said. "They're like brothers to me."

Stover and Diamanti aren't alone, either, in quick transition to college life. Freshman quarterback Tom Thornton and safety Tim Kamana are grayshirts (a grayshirt delays enrollment after signing). Thornton signed in 2012 but didn't enroll until January; Kamana was a mid-year signee but spent the fall semester at West Point Prep.

Thornton kept busy by training with Loren Landow out of Denver (Landow trains a myriad of NFL players, including Denver Broncos receiver Eric Decker). But he also took a focused approach and tried to keep his mind sharp.

After working out in the mornings, Thornton then went to work as the quarterback coach for Legend High School in Parker, Colo.

"Mentally, the college game is so much more advanced," Thornton said. "I feel like I'm learning a lot."

Wyoming completed its 12th of 15 practices on Monday, and the spring game is Saturday. Stover is excited to get a chance to perform for the Wyoming fans but said he did discover one advantage about the high-altitude training when he returned home over spring break.

"I could run forever," Stover said. "I did everything like three times."

Contact sports reporter Clint Robus at or 307-266-0615. Read his blog at and follow him on Twitter @ClintRobus

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