Ryan is not coming into a good situation with the Falcons. Leaving aside the mediocre receiving corps and substandard offensive line, Falcons fans are not happy with the drafting of Ryan. Speaking in broad stereotypes (always a recipe for disaster), the Falcons' fan base is primarily composed of two groups. The first group are African-Americans, some of whom still like Mike Vick and most of whom are well aware of the racial coding that goes on when the media slobbers all over Ryan for being a "leader" and "polished." They aren't going to be overly excited for a great white hope, given the circumstances. The second group are college football fanatics who view Falcons games as dessert after the main course on Saturday. (I would put myself in this group. I would also assert that there isn't tremendous overlap between group one and group two because college football unfortunately tends to be a white sport, especially in the South. I digress.) Southern college football fans, almost universally, view Ryan as an average college quarterback who has been hyped beyond his merits because he played in the Northeast. This group is also not happy with the Ryan selection.
Whereas most top five picks are greeted with unabashed, oft-irrational enthusiasm by the fans of the teams that draft them, Ryan is not going to get the same love in Atlanta. Atlanta fans tend to be a lot more positive and forgiving than, say, Philly fans, but the particulars of Ryan's drafting mean that he is going face an especially empathetic fan base. This is why the purported rationale of the Falcons to take Ryan for marketing purposes is so weak.
As an Atlanta resident, I think the racial divide is Arthur Blank's problem. Ryan just needs to win and play well. The rest will take care of itself.
Speaking of race...Deadspin played "gotcha" with a Notre Dame club in Pennsylvania. Nothing BC related in the link, but given what just happened on our campus, I think the thug label is too often thrown around.
Here is more on Pruitt signing with Detroit.
Former BC assistant Erik Johnson is now the new coach of the women's team at University of Denver.
Kevin Challenger has already been traded. Life is tough in the CFL.