Aug 9, 2007

Chris Rix Threatened Me With a Federal Subpoena (and Prayer)

A little more than a year ago, I wrote a post titled "Chris Rix Takes Irony to the Next Level." A copy of that post ran on BlogCritics Sports the following day. You see, I had stumbled upon a website for the Champion Training Academy, operated by former Florida State disaster quarterback Chris Rix.

Anyone that follows college football remembers the absolute calamity that was his time as a Seminole both on and off the field. The irony of this Academy was simply amazing to me, so I took a few moments out of my evening to make light of the fact that someone widely remembered as a screw-up and team disappointment was attempting to mold young quarterbacks into champions and, most astonishingly, leaders.

Chris Rix was an amazing athlete coming out of Santa Margarita High School, and, clearly, he possessed a good deal of natural talent. But that’s what it takes to play Division I football, and, particularly, start 4 years at Florida State. At least, it used to. But unless you’re one of his loved ones, it’s fair to say that natural talent notwithstanding, you know that his career was a comedy of errors. Sure, he could throw an 80 yard touchdown but leadership? Unless you call missing the Sugar Bowl because you slept through your finals "leadership," I don’t think so.

So a week after my post appeared on BlogCritics I received a patronizing e-mail with the subject line "no hard feelings" from one Chris Rix. I shared it with a few friends for laughs but it didn’t go any further. It seemed like a complete waste of time. But thanks to today’s events, that e-mail is coming out for you all to enjoy (I particularly liked the randomly erroneous use of quotation marks). Click to enlarge:

Chris Rix patronizes me but hey "no hard feelings"

Now, what I wanted to say here was that the only people that he should be praying for are the parents too foolish to realize that they’re throwing their money away. Signing your kid up for leadership training with Chris Rix makes as much as sense as sending him to Ryan Leaf for mental toughness training.

But I refused to get into an email war with a guy that uses quotations around words to insinuate that they aren’t actually real. Look Chris, putting quotes around the word "mistakes" doesn’t erase your laundry list of screw ups at Florida State University.

In any case, all was quiet for 14 months and then this afternoon, I received this:

So not only did he lie about that "no hard feelings" business, but Rix has also proven that it really is too hard to focus on the positive. That must’ve been a sobering realization. Maybe he needs some prayer. That wouldn’t be patronizing to offer that, would it? Nah. But you know something, I can’t say I blame Rix for getting upset with me. When you’ve always been told that you’re great and believe it because you blocked out four seasons of memories in Tallahasee, it’s only natural to develop a sense of entitlement that enables you to threaten to sue people because they have the audacity to disagree with your opinion of your career. But I’m sorry to say that this is not how the world works. Maybe it did in Iraq circa 2002 when Rix was dropping yet another game to Miami, but not in America. The same America that allows him to teach leadership skills to children after failing miserably at it for so long, also grants me the right to share whatever opinion I please.

And in my opinion, the only person that ought to receive a lawsuit threat in this situation is Chris Rix for teaching things he’s never demonstrated an ability to do. That said, if parents are stupid enough to pay… but I digress.

So I laughed at him in a public forum? What, like I’m the first? The things said in my post pale in comparison to the vitriol (both fair and unfair) spewed about him both in print and the internet from 2001 – 2005. Are federal subpoenas en route to all of the other message boards, web sites and blogs out there? While it’s pretty clear that Rix doesn’t know how a subpoena works or what it actually is, maybe they’re also receiving threatening e-mails full of tough talk, bold font and capital letters as I type. I know "IMMEDIATELY" sure scared me into submission. Then again, maybe Rix wields the authority of the federal government to dispense justice. If so, I must have missed that memo but please allow me to throw out a "my bad" if that’s the case.

Now, if my posts contained libel, I’d understand his threat. But I didn’t make up lies about Rix or Champion Training Academy. I simply questioned the qualifications of Rix, who, as a primary instructor, claims to teach young quarterbacks qualities that – in my opinion – he never mastered. If Jim Kelly wrote a book titled "Winning the Super Bowl," or Michelle Wie ran an academy called "Making the Cut on the PGA Tour," I’d be within my rights to say, "Hey Jim? Uh, Michelle? Excuse me, but you know nothing about that."

I know this is all pretty painful Chris, but that’s how life goes. But I suppose if you don’t like it, you can get a Delorean and have a go at a career do-over, thus changing all of these posts into praise for your work at leadership camp. But since I don’t think Doc Brown will be rolling up to your house any time soon, you might want to grow thicker skin and get over yourself. I am not the first person to mock the fact that you’re running a leadership academy nor will I be the last – especially not now.

Like I said before – If you want to run a camp, fine. You were/are an exceptionally talented quarterback who clearly didn’t become the player you were supposed to be; I’m sure you have a lot of knowledge to impart to the youngins. But when you spend a career disregarding four of your own rules for being a champion quarterback, it is in my opinion that you forfeit the right to impart said "wisdom" on children who think you’re putting them on the fast track to the next level.

But who knows? Maybe some good can come of this little ordeal between you and I, Chris. After this attempt at intimidation goes nowhere, maybe you can start up another training academy called, "How to Successfully Sue People with Opinions Based on Valid Observations."


  • So, hang on… according to that first email, Chris Rix is playing quarterback for the Romans now?
    No, wait… I mean, “Chris Rix” is “playing” “quarterback” for the ROMANS NOW?

  • Flash,
    This cracked me up. I actually called my wife over to have her read it; then she cracked up.
    All I know is that if Rix is going to start legal action against anyone who thinks he sucked as a player, I’m glad he hasn’t monitored my email or private conversations.
    I think that even when he was at FSU, “playing” was probably a better description than playing. (Oh great, now I’m due for a subpoena.)

  • You’ve got to be freakin kidding. Is this guy for real??? You were A LOT kinder than 95% of the stuff he’ll find out there about himself and if he tries to erase all of those articles too, he’ll break the internet. I hope Blogcritics doesn’t give in to this crap.

  • This is surprisingly restrained. I don’t know if I’m proud or disappointed. Maybe proud to be disappointed? Nicely done. :)

  • You didn’t do anything wrong. Everything you said was accurate. Chris Rix was a huge bust and a first class fuck up. You know some of the people from those teams just as well as I do and saying leadership wasn’t something he brought to the table is putting it lightly. He knows it. He’s just pissed a woman called him out on it.
    Keep the post up. Anybody that thinks that you should be scared of a threat coming from a hotmail address isn’t smart enough to know why he has no case.

  • WOW. There’s a Free Shoes education for you. The first thing that dumb ass should do is consult a dictionary and learn what “subpoena” means.
    Well played, Flash. Don’t give this douchebag an inch.

  • I guess I never “realized” that this is ALL IT TAKES to get “someone” to do what I WANT THEM to do!
    Chris Rix is a complete joke.

  • 10 million dollar arm, 10 cent head. unbelievable.

  • I might hurt myself if I keep laughing. Can I issue a federal smackdown subpoena to Chris Rix for being so stupid that he caused me pain?? I’ll follow his example and won’t state the reason why the subpoena is coming. I’ll just hope an e-mail from my official Hotmail account does the trick.

  • so all the rumors through the years about Rix being an arrogant but stupid SOB are true. what a surprise!

  • LOL!!!! This cat CANNOT be for real!!! If Rix is makin noise, he needs to start with Jeff Bowden and then take a look in the mirror. Betcha he runs the drill at the “academy” where ya throw off the wrong foot, across your body and into triple coverage like a damn pro! LOL

  • Flash! WTF? You were supposed to get that ridiculous email and tremble! Now you’ll just make him more mad and he’ll threaten to send Homeland Security after you for being a terrorist.

  • lol it’s almost like he doesn’t realize that he’s JUST chris rix and no one at google is going to give a shit about this.
    “take it down! because i said! I MEAN BUSINESS!”
    i’m surprised he didn’t also threaten to arrest you in that email.

  • Top notch stuff. Some people just shouldn’t google their name.
    Better watch out Flash he might gang up with Beckham and Svennis ;¬)

  • Ryan Leaf for mental toughness training… bahahahahah!
    And I love it – every President of a company should have a hotmail email address. Spare no expense!
    Oh, and can’t forget the John 3:16. Because everything should have a religious reference on it.

  • It’s really admirable the way he’s hiding behind God/Christianity to patronize and then intimidate you.
    BUt I’ll bet you he prayed on this matter over the last 14 months and when God STILL hadn’t changed your heart, he had to take matters into his own hands.

  • I don’t even know what to say. Did he watch an episode of Boston Legal and decide to come after you with words that he learned??? Dumb bastard.

  • omg. omg. ::breathing::… The hotmail address killed me. Hahahaha!


  • I believe he is actually not far off the mark in threatening subpoena. I think what he means is that he will bring a cause of action and following that subpoena you to appear in relation to it. Just an awkward way of threatening legal action, I suppose.
    However, and a big however, he has absolutely no (read 0%) chance of ever succeeding in a legal action against you. There is simply nothing supported by these facts to raise any legal cause of action. It is not possible to win a defamation suit when the basis of the statements at issue were expressions of opinion. Besides that, another defense is raised when the author of the statements is making an assertion supported by the truth. And even still, there is the fact that over the course of Rix’ football career he was a limited purpose public figure, forcing him to show more than the usual requirements for defamation.
    Needless to say, Rix has clearly not done more research into this than to try and scare you into submission.

  • My favorite? The idea that you can not only take the post down, but ALSO GET RID OF ALL SEARCH ENGINE MENTIONS.
    Like you, a modest blogger, have the means to somehow erase all mentions of someone in a search engine.
    Even funnier: the fact that Google would never be involved with something this small.
    Keep “fighting” the good “fight,” “Rix!”

  • Wait, how does Chris Rix have time to start a quarterback training academy AND continue his successful NFL career? Oh…
    MrVilhauer’s absolutely correct: Once this material is out in the open, nothing, not even the orderiest of court orders in the land, can prevent its distribution.
    To quote Joe from NewsRadio, “it would be like trying to get pee out of a pool.”
    Thanks for sharing this rather amusing confrontation with us!

  • Er, he’s way, way off the mark with his subpoena comment. You don’t ever issue a subpoena to a party to a civil lawsuit (such as the defendant). Subpoenas are a tool for getting info from non-parties.

  • You just OWNED Chris Rix!!!

  • I think you basically crammed this right back up his ass! LOL You’re my new hero.

  • I am a gator fan but I would like to see all you
    brave keyboard commandos talk ch#t to his face.
    He ain the first QB to have problems in college or the last. Working with kids is a great endeavor and I hope it works out for all involved. Lay off the guy.

  • Obviously you missed the point of all of this, Steve. It’s not about Rix working with kids, it’s about the irony that Rix is trying to teach kids about things that he NEVER displayed an ability to do. Someone questioned that and he tried to intimidate her into backing down with legal jargon that he doesn’t even understand. He set himself up for this. He doesn’t deserve anyone to lay off.

  • I know this. Starting at QB for FSU is not a walk in the park. Football practice (for those that never have played) is damned hard work made much harder in the Fla climate. Tons of preasure and not for the faint of heart. His stumbles were magnified because of his position and college. I admire most athletes for the hardwork it takes to play college ball. Im sure he learned some humility and important lessons along the way. btw did we ever beat a Rix QB’d team?

  • Who is we?

  • This is comedy gold. I don’t know my Bible verses, so I Googled Romans 12:10:
    Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves
    Um, I’m gay, and even I think that’s teh ghey.
    Chris Rix, most clueless man on the planet.

  • Flashback to your freshman year and my senior year when Givens had you in that tree throwing nerf balls at that girl in PE I was tryin to date. Remember that? I wound up not getting laid because I doubled over laughin at her. But that was my “mistake” and you are the one that’s really “to blame.” I sat on this for a few years but it’s PISSING ME OFF NOW. You’d better apologize or i’m “slapping” you witha FEDERAL sub-peena AND arrest by the National Guard!

  • This whole confrontation personifies exactly what derailed his career (aside from Jeff Bowden) – jaw-dropping stupidity.

  • Now that this has been up for almost a week and linked on other sites, I have to wonder how many people have attempted calling that cell number in the first email.
    I’d also wonder about how much spam the email address is getting, but since it’s hotmail, I doubt that he’d be able to notice the increase in volume.

  • Is Rix really that dumb to include his cell number in his message? C’mon he can’t be that dumb!

  • ok. I just read this and I am trying to process the irony overload… Christopher C. Rix single handedly destroyed along with (Bobby b) one of the most successful football programs in the history of sports. Now he wants money to teach kids to succeed? The fact that someone with that much talent and opportunity who squandered it all due to his mental disabilities and pride is now using religion to talk down to others about success is jaw dropping. Sure he can do whatever he wants, but teach success for money? very Christian Rixie.

  • As a Seminole fan, I groaned many times over Rix. As entertainment goes, your post was great, as was his response. But, I do feel for the guy. HE probably is a better person after all he’s been through. I don’t know him personally, but the fact that he is a (self-identified) Christian and a great, experienced athlete does uniquely qualify him to instruct Christian youth in football. I think his response is basically a way of protecting his economic future. And you can’t blame him for getting a little p.o.’d.
    Having said all that, I think he should change the name of his academy.

  • I do know Chris. He is a great guy. I didn’t know him in college, but know him now as an adult. Class act, family man, and seems to represent his Christian faith well. Just balancing the opinions on the blog. If you look into his organization, I think you’ll find he does great work with kids.
    My 2 cents


I am a jaded, sarcastic girl prone to unreasonable fits of rage. This site is my outlet. I am not classy, nice, or fair. It's best you know that up front.


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