When Notre Dame landed top quarterback prospect Gunner Kiel, the Irish thought they were getting a guy that could lead them to a national championship. This may still be the case, but it turns out they have already found that in Everett Golson.
It may be time for Kiel to consider a transfer.
The truth is that head coach Brian Kelly has been blessed with many reliable options at quarterback. It just so happened that things worked out with Golson before Kiel even had a chance. Most guys would be happy for their teammate, but Kiel did not come to South Bend to ride the bench for much of his career. This is somebody who was a 5-star recruit and had offers from every top school imaginable.
Maybe Kiel decides to stick it out for another year and sees if an opportunity opens up. If this were the case, he would be a better man than I am.
If he does thank his coaches and decides he needs to skip town, here are five schools that should be on his radar.
Kiel is from Columbus, Indiana and really likes the program in Bloomington. He likes the Hoosiers so much that this was actually the first school he committed to before decommitting early in his recruiting process.
Due to the ties back home and being close to family and friends, Kiel may want to remain in the area if he feels tempted to leave South Bend.
Indiana is certainly not Notre Dame, as the program has only reached one bowl game since 1993. However, the team was very competitive this season despite only winning four games, and it has a few pieces in place to possibly have some success in the next couple of years.
Some would say that having Cameron Coffman on the roster will scare Kiel away, but he wasn't much of a difference maker his first year on the field. Although Indiana did have the 18th-best passing game in the country, Coffman only threw 15 touchdowns to 11 interceptions and completed under 61 percent of his passes.
If Kiel wants to remain close to home and be the guy that turns his home program around, Indiana is the right school for him after all.
Another school that Kiel committed to before picking Notre Dame was LSU. The decommitment made head coach Les Miles so upset that he decided to throw shots at the young man when he found out the news.
No hard feelings, right?
After having your leadership and heart questioned by a head coach, it would be tough for anybody to want to go back there. But if anybody knows Coach Miles, you would have a general idea that he was just being himself when he made those comments. He likely didn't mean any of it and was only acting like a child because he didn't get what he wanted.
He has perhaps forgotten all about that incident since then and has been as cool as a cucumber once he was able to feast on some grass.
Seriously though, LSU hasn't had a reliable quarterback since gas prices where reasonable. Kiel could finally give this program a quality signal-caller that would put the Tigers on top in the SEC.
The majority of the recruits that pick Notre Dame do so because of the football tradition and the top-notch education you can pick up as well. Most guys pick Vanderbilt because of the quality education, but just recently they have looked the Commodores way because of the football side of things also.
Head coach James Franklin has only been on the job for two years and has led Vandy to two straight bowl games. This has never happened in the team history, as the Commodores have been one of the laughing stocks of college football since the Titanic sunk.
What Franklin has done for the program has been incredible, and it looks like this is actually a team on the rise in the SEC East. This year’s starting quarterback in Jordan Rodgers is on his way out and Kiel could be the one to fill that void.
Not too many schools offer a great education and solid football. With Franklin leading the way, Vanderbilt is now one of those schools.
When will Florida State ever get back on top?
When the team actually finds a quarterback that is accurate and can lead an offense down the field.
The Seminoles have the solid coaching and the top defense that keeps them in games. The problem is that they haven't had that elite quarterback in quite some time. Even Christian Ponder from a few years ago was easily rattled and would cost his team games.
Good news for Florida State fans is that E.J. Manuel is one game away from moving on and the quarterback position is wide open. Backup Clint Trickett has shown flashes of solid play at times, but he isn't experienced enough to completely believe in.
The Seminoles also picked up a 5-star recruit in Jameis Winston from the 2012 class, but does this team really want to roll the dice with another dual-threat option?
Head coach Jimbo Fisher is already on the hot seat and would be wise to do anything he can to land a sure-fire quarterback to get his team back to the promise land.
Tennessee is really the complete package if Kiel is seriously looking to leave Notre Dame. He would get to play against the best competition in the SEC, would still be at a prestigious program and he would be playing for an offensive-minded coach.
With the recent hire of Butch Jones, Kiel would have the opportunity to work with somebody who has been working on the offensive side of the ball since 1992. He has turned many offenses around, won MAC titles and he even kept Cincinnati afloat once Coach Brian Kelly left the Bearcats.
Tennessee should also have an open spot at the quarterback position as early as next year depending on what current starter Tyler Bray does as far as the NFL is concerned.
It has been a long time since a Peyton Manning-type guy has led the Volunteers up and down the field. While it wouldn't be fair to compare Kiel to Manning, he would give this program a real chance to succeed and get back in the spotlight.
If Kiel has even thought about transferring, he should begin working on his rendition of "Rocky Top" as soon as possible.