December: Kiel commits to LSU.
January: Kiel changes his mind, again, and enrolls at Notre Dame.
The Irish better hope that Kiel is more decisive than this in the pocket.
Denman and Kiel have done nothing wrong, by NCAA standards.
These are oral commitments. They're not binding. Nothing becomes binding until the athletes sign official letters of intent, and that signing period doesn't begin until Wednesday. After that, they would face a penalty, getting sidelined for a season, for backing out of a commitment.
I also realize that high school recruits are 17- and 18-year-olds who reserve the right to change their minds, especially when it comes to a major decision such as picking a college.
But something needs to change.
What Denman and Kiel have done is wrong on a couple of levels.
It isn't fair to the college programs they've left behind.
It isn't fair to other high school recruits who play the same positions and might have been looking at the same schools as Denman and Kiel.
When Kiel announced that he would go to Indiana, were there any other high school quarterbacks who were being recruited by the Hoosiers and wanted to go to Indiana, but looked elsewhere and committed elsewhere, because they weren't confident that they eventually would beat out Kiel for the starting job?
Were there high school seniors in that same situation with LSU, for the very short period that Kiel was an "LSU commit"?
Did Indiana and LSU lose out on any other quarterback prospects because the two schools were confident they had Kiel in their grasp?
You can raise the same questions with Denman, and with Penn State and Wisconsin and those programs' recruiting along the offensive line.
And - who knows? - Denman might not be through with his college selection. After all, mere days after Denman chose Rutgers, Scarlet Knights coach Greg Schiano left last Thursday for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Something has to be done to make athletes take oral commitments more seriously.
Here's one idea:
The NCAA places sanctions, minor sanctions, on athletes who commit to a school and then change their mind without a valid reason.
Among the valid reasons would be a significant change in the coaching staff at the college - such as what has happened twice (Stanford, Penn State) to St. Joseph's Prep quarterback Skyler Mornhinweg - or a change in the athlete's life that might require him to attend a school closer to home.
Neither of those factored into Kiel's flip-flopping, but a change in coaching did prompt Denman's shift from Wisconsin to Rutgers. Six assistants, including the offensive-line coach, had left the Badgers program since Denman's commitment.
Nothing like that, however, led to his change of heart about the Nittany Lions. In October, Denman acknowledged to The Inquirer, simply, "I think I jumped the gun when I committed to Penn State."
The NCAA should enact a rule that a player who decommits to a school without an acceptable reason has to sit out a portion - say, 10 percent - of his first season at the school that he ultimately attends.
If he decommits a second time, the penalty doubles.
And if the athlete ends up redshirting in his freshman year, the suspension would be served the next season.
Maybe then, instead of changing their mind twice, Kiel and Denman would think twice before making their first commitment.
Contact staff writer Lou Rabito at 215-854-2916