"It will all shake itself out this spring," he (KELLY) said. "And I say that because (Kiel) really hasn't been given an opportunity. He came in as an early enrollee and had the spring to just run around there with very little knowledge base of the college game and understanding protections. He just did things because he's a big, strong athlete.
"We gave him a little bit of a sniff of it in preseason camp, but not a lot really, quite frankly, because again there was a learning curve there and we needed to hit the ground running. So this spring is going to be, quite frankly, his opportunity to show himself.
"So he may transfer at the end of spring, He may be the starter at the end of spring. I think the question is fair, but I really couldn't tell you how to answer those questions other than this spring will definitely determine his place within the program."
Of course, this doesn't mean he said the same thing to Kiel. But the scenario you posit above is pretty unlikely. Kiel may have felt he had no chance to win, for whatever reason.