Four-down territory: A Kiel coup for Notre Dame
Let's take a look at what's happening across the nation on this Tuesday morning...
• Updating a story from Monday, top Class of 2012 quarterback prospect Gunner Kiel is indeed enrolling at Notre Dame instead of LSU just hours before classes begin for spring semester in South Bend. Kiel is expected to be living on campus by the end of the week, and he'll be able to participate in spring practice with Brian Kelly's squad. Certainly landing Kiel sets the Fighting Irish up for an even more intriguing quarterback battle in spring drills, with Tommy Rees, Andrew Hendrix and Everett Golson already at the forefront. It also could give the Irish a nice spark on the recruiting front as National Signing Day nears.
• Meanwhile, with Kiel out of the equation in Baton Rouge, the Tigers will be looking to fill the quarterback void in the Class of 2012. Former Georgia transfer Zach Mettenberger will start at quarterback in 2012, but who could fill out the depth chart? Four-star quarterback Jeremiah Briscoe from Stratford High School in Houston, Tex., could now look even harder at LSU with Kiel gone, and the Tigers also have Stephen Rivers, a rising sophomore and the brother of San Diego Chargers quarterback Phillip Rivers.
• The loss of defensive line coach and top recruiter Tosh Lupoi to Steve Sarkisian's staff at Washington has already affected Cal's recruiting efforts this season and will be tough for Jeff Tedford to overcome moving forward. Lupoi was a rising star in the recruiting world, and he never left Berkeley since arriving as a freshman player in 2000. The Golden Bears were putting together yet another strong class under Lupoi, who was mentored by new Huskies defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox. Late Monday night UCLA gained the commitment of five-star defensive tackle Ellis McCarthy, who had committed to Cal earlier in the month, and I'm not sure McCarthy would have made the move if Lupoi was still in Berkeley. Arik Armstead, meanwhile, has also ruled out Cal. One of the nation's top linemen will now choose between Notre Dame and Auburn.
• While Washington gained a top assistant in Lupoi, Sarkisian also lost his offensive coordinator. Doug Nussmeier took the OC job at Alabama, but Sarkisian did hold the play-calling duties in Seattle. Nussmeier, however, was instrumental in molding Jake Locker into a first-round pick and developing last season's star quarterback Keith Price. It wouldn't be a surprise to see Sarkisian at this point promote receivers coach Jimmie Dougherty to OC and possibly even quarterbacks coach. Stay tuned.
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