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Notre Dame transfer Gunner Kiel is the new quarterback at Cincinnati in a season of transition

One of Gunner Kiel's biggest challenges is keeping his excitement in check.

The transfer from Notre Dame takes over as Cincinnati's starting quarterback in a season of transition for the Bearcats. Their American Athletic Conference is reconfigured once again. And Cincinnati (9-4) is moving off-campus, playing all its home games at Paul Brown Stadium while Nippert Stadium is revamped.

The Bearcats are trying to develop their running game to take some of the pressure off the inexperienced Kiel, a sophomore who sat out last season. And they'll rely on a defense that returns eight starters and has a lot more speed and depth this season.

They open at Paul Brown Stadium on Friday, Sept. 12 against Toledo.

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