Report: QB Gunner Kiel leaving Irish
Notre Dame quarterback Gunner Kiel intends to transfer after just one season, sources close to the Fighting Irish told the Chicago Tribune.
Kiel, a 2011 five-star recruit from Columbus, Ind., and Scout.com's No. 1 prospect, first committed to Indiana in June 2011, later pledged to LSU in late December that year, then de-committed from the Tigers in time to enroll early at Notre Dame in mid-January, 2012.
Kiel was red-shirted this past season and didn’t play for the Irish. He is the nephew of former Notre Dame quarterback Blair Kiel.
Gunner Kiel is the second former five-star prospect from Notre Dame's 17-player recruiting class in 2012 to leave the program.
Cornerback Tee Shepard, also an early enrollee, transferred during his first semester, spring 2012, before taking part in spring practice. Neither played a down for the Irish.
Notre Dame returns three quarterbacks from 2012: junior starter Everett Golson, who has three seasons of eligibility remaining; senior backup Tommy Rees, who enters his final season in 2013; and Rees' classmate Andrew Hendrix, who is eligible through 2014 after a 2011 redshirt campaign.
Malik Zaire, a Scout.com four-star prospect, enrolled at the university in January and will take part in spring practice this month.
The website Irisheyes.com expected Kiel to win the backup role to Golson, a job that has historically resulted in extensive playing time and opportunity under head coach Brian Kelly.