Since Notre Dame finished an undefeated regular season last December, one controversy after another has tarnished the Golden Domers sterling reputation. The national championship was a steamrolling. Manti Te'o's catfishing incident was a distraction, but it was a personal situation for Te'o that wasn't expected to affect their 2013 campaign. However, on Saturday night, Notre Dame officials confirmed that due to academic-related reasons, starting quarterback Everett Golson was no longer enrolled in the university. There are rumors circulating, but unsubstantiated that Golson's departure is related to plagiarism accusations on a final exam.
Golson's absence puts a serious damper on their 2013 season as well and highlights the spring transfer of Gunner Kiel, the No. 1 rated pro quarterback prospect in the Class of 2012. At the time, Kiel's spring transfer made sense considering Golson's emergence as the starting quarterback during his redshirt freshman season and Kelly's preference for mobile quarterbacks in his spread offensive scheme.
Instead, Kiel, who has confirmed that he's not returning to Notre Dame next season will have to sit out the season at Cincinnati and wait until at least his redshirt sophomore season in 2014 to make his first collegiate start. In the meantime, Notre Dame will have to make due with backup Tommy Rees, who went 8-5 as the starter in 2011.