Nov. 4, 2005
#78 John Sullivan
Junior, 6-4, 298
Old Greenwich, Conn./Greenwich
Junior center John Sullivan is in his third season at Notre Dame. In 2005, he has started each of the last three games for the Irish — Purdue, USC and Brigham Young — and helps pave the way for one of the most productive offenses in all of college football. Currently, Notre Dame is averaging 573.0 yards and 37.9 points per game. In each of the last three contests, Notre Dame’s offense has averaged 501.7 yards per game. As a sophomore, Sullivan started all 12 games at center in his first full season of action. GameDay’s Elizabeth Goers gives Irish fans a chance to get to know John Sullivan.
Goers: What is your major and how did you get interested in that area of study?
Sullivan: I am finance major here at Notre Dame. My oldest brother was a finance major in college.
Goers: What has been your hardest class and why?
Sullivan: My most difficult class has been Investment Theory. It has very difficult material.
Goers: What has been your favorite class and why?
Sullivan: I would have to say U.S. Latino Spirituality with Father Grudy. I think that he is a great professor. He makes the class a lot of fun.
Goers: What made you pick Notre Dame over the other schools you were interested in? What were the other schools?
Sullivan: My final five schools were Notre Dame, Miami, Boston College, Michigan and North Carolina. I chose Notre Dame because of the tradition and education.
Goers: To date, what has been the highlight of your Notre Dame career?
Sullivan: I would have to say that the win over BYU two weeks ago. That has been the best win of my career.
Goers: Who were your sports idols as a kid and why?
Sullivan: I wanted to be a cornerback, a defensive back, so I liked Rod Woodson. I kind of grew out of that pretty quick, but I just thought he was a great player and I liked the Steelers when I was a kid. He was one of their best players.
Goers: As a football player, is there any one player you modeled your game after?
Sullivan: No one in particular. I just try to look at all of the centers that are out there and see if I can’t emulate the best guys there are in that position – guys like Kevin Mawae and more recently Jeff Faine who played here at Notre Dame.
Goers: Who has been your biggest non-sports role model and why?
Sullivan: I would have to say my father. He’s just a great guy and if I can be half the person he is, I would be a very happy person.
Goers: What is one thing in your life that you cannot live without?
Sullivan: I would have to say that I can’t live without my family.
Goers: Do you have any pre-game rituals?
Sullivan: I have to take a shower before the game. It doesn’t have to be at the locker room, but that day I have to take a shower.
Goers: What is the best advice that you have ever been given and who gave it to you?
Sullivan: One of my trainers back home, a guy named Dr. Ken Meissner, told me to `work hard and don’t mess up.’ I think that is pretty straightforward, solid advice.
Goers: How do you think you’ve grown as a person since coming to Notre Dame?
Sullivan: I think as a person, being on my own and going to college, it’s a big step being away from your family. That’s helped me realize how much they mean to me since I can’t see them everyday. I’ve realized that I have built great bonds with people here at school and that no one can do it alone. There are other people around who can build you up to be stronger.
Goers: What is one thing about you that might surprise people?
Sullivan: I like to do impressions. I am all over the place. I’ll do Ron Burgundy; I’ll do impressions of our coaches – whatever you want I can do.
Goers: How and what do you do to balance your schoolwork and football?
Sullivan: I work throughout the day and use the time I have, and try not to get behind on my schoolwork. When I hear something on the football field and I am being coached, I try to remember it the first time.
Goers: What is you favorite movie and why?
Sullivan: I like `Boondock Saints’ because I’m Irish.
Goers: Where is the toughest place that you’ve played as a college football player?
Sullivan: Neyland Stadium at Tennessee is the toughest place that I’ve played.
Goers: What CD do you have in your collection that would surprise people?
Sullivan: I am a big Oasis fan.
Goers: What would a movie about your life be titled and who would star as you?
Sullivan: I would say that Jack Black would star as me, but I don’t know what the movie would be called.
Goers: Who is the best athlete that you have ever competed against?
Sullivan: I am going to have to go with Trevor Laws.
Goers: If you had the chance to play golf with anyone in history, besides you, who else would be in your foursome and why would you pick those three people?
Sullivan: I would like to play with Michael Jordan, my dad and then somebody for comic relief. I’ll have to go with Chris Farley.
Goers: When your football career is over, what do you see yourself doing?
Sullivan: Having a family, being happy and coaching football at some point.
Goers: Describe what it feels like on game day and playing Notre Dame stadium?
Sullivan: Just hearing the crowd when you come out of the tunnel, it is so much more than anyone who has ever experienced could have imagined.
Goers: What is your favorite thing about playing for Notre Dame?
Sullivan: I would have to say game day and winning on game day. I love to win and I love to compete with the guys we have here and going out and fighting the other team with them.