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Sports Illustrated Set To Publish A Feature On Gunner Kiel

For most of the Bearcats longer than strictly necessary summer the Cincinnati Bearcats coaching staff and administration did a good job of keeping the spotlight and attention off of Gunner Kiel. He was not named the starting quarterback coming out of spring despite being the best of the bunch by a big margin. He was not invited to Rhode Island as a player representative for AAC media days. Tommy Tuberville went to extraordinary lengths to not name Gunner the starter when EVERYONE knew that it was Gunner. Everything the coaches and the administration have done has been about minimizing the pressure and expectations that Gunner would face as a first time starter.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Then the Toledo game happened.

The spotlight is now on Gunner Kiel, and it will never really go away so long as he is the quarterback for the Cincinnati bearcats. It may vary in intensity as we move through his seasons and years in Clifton, but it's never really going to go away. With the talent that he has he can count on it being a part of his life for a long time.

That spotlight is set to burn brighter than ever on Gunner Kiel because this is, without question, the biggest game on the schedule for the Bearcats in 2014. There could be bigger one's later in the year, ECU in particular, but for those games to truly resonate on a national stage the Bearcats have to win this game.

This is the week that the eyes of the general football public turns to Gunner Kiel. It's not a huge surprise then that this is also the week where Gunner get's a feature in Sports Illustrated.

That publication doesn't resonate like it once did, the internet killed it's print edition. But it's still SI. It still has some cache. It's something of a historical right of passage for any sports figure. But for Gunner and the Bearcats this week, it is just one more thing that will bring a more focused intensity on this team, this program and this game.

I don't know about you, but I am definitely buying a copy or 12.