April 27, 2008
NEW YORK – Former Notre Dame center John Sullivan (Old Greenwich, Conn./Greenwich) was selected Sunday by the Minnesota Vikings in the sixth round of the 2008 NFL Draft with the 187th pick overall. Sullivan was the second Irish player to be drafted Sunday (T. Zbikowski) and the fourth Notre Dame graduate taken in this year’s NFL Draft (J. Carlson, T. Laws, T. Zbikowski).
Sullivan becomes the fourth Notre Dame offensive lineman drafted in the last three years (Dan Stevenson, New England, 2006; Ryan Harris, Denver and Dan Santucci, Cincinnati in 2007) and the first Irish center taken since Jeff Faine was selected with the 21st pick in the 2003 draft by Cleveland. Sullivan is the first Notre Dame player drafted by Minnesota since linebacker Pete Bercich (211th overall pick in 1994).
Sullivan started 43 of 47 games in his career and started 31 straight games from 2005 until the 11th game of the 2007 season. He helped pave the way for a 1,000-yard rusher from 2004-06 and protected a 3,000-yard passer in 2005 and 2006. Sullivan was selected a team captain in 2007 and was named the Guardian of the Year at the 2007 team banquet. A Rimington Award watch list member in 2006 and 2007, Sullivan graduated in May 2007 from Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business with a degree in marketing.