How Did Former FSU QB Chris Rix Become First QB To Go 0-5 vs. Miami?
Chris Rix Goes 0-5 Against Miami
Bobby Bowden coached some excellent quarterbacks when he was the head coach at Florida State. Players like Casey Weldon, Charlie Ward, Danny Kanell, Thad Busby and Chris Weinke are gunslingers that come to mind when you think of leaders of those potent Seminole offenses that carved up nearly every defense that opposed them.
In the 90’s, Florida State finished in the top-five every year because they had a quarterback who could manage the game well, but also make big plays if they needed to. Florida State and Miami will square off this weekend in Tallahassee and the Seminoles are led by a tremendous quarterback in Jameis Winston.
Winston is only a freshman, which may not seem that unusual in today’s college football landscape, but that would be almost unheard of under former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden, who liked for his quarterbacks to sit for a few years and then take the reins as the starter during their junior or senior season. It was a solid system that worked for Bowden and the Seminoles until their depth chart did not leave them with that option.
After Heisman Trophy winner Chris Weinke ran out of eligibility following the 2000 season, Bowden knew he had a tough year ahead of him. In 2001, Florida State started freshman quarterback Chris Rix, who ended up wearing No. 16 just like Weinke. However, Rix was inconsistent throughout his whole career, but he was consistent in one area: losing to Miami. Rix is the only player to go 0-5 against a single team in a college career. In 2003, the the Seminoles and Hurricanes met in the regular season and also in the Orange Bowl, giving him the extra game.
Sometimes a team just has a player’s number, but that's an understatement with Rix and the Hurricanes. Sticking with the theme of Florida State and Miami, here are Rix’s five performances against Miami.
5. Chris Rix vs. Miami 2001
Miami entered this game No. 1 in the country and Florida State was in the unfamiliar role of underdog, but still ranked No. 13. Florida State had not lost a home game since “Wide Right 1” in 1991 against Miami. But on this day, the Hurricanes dominated. Chris Rix took a beating all game, completing just 13 of 30 pass attempts for 222 yards and one touchdown. That’s the good, now here’s the bad: Rix threw four interceptions, two of which were to Ed Reed, lost a fumble and was sacked six times. His team fell behind early and could never catch up. Vince Wilfork, Jonathon Vilma, Reed and Ray Buchanan gave Rix a rude welcoming to the rivalry, and Miami won the game, 49-27. A poor performance by Rix was much-maligned, but he was going up against the best defense in the country.
4. Chris Rix vs. Miami 2002
Miami entered this game No. 1 for the second straight year, while Florida State was sitting at No. 12. The Seminoles had a great game plan: run the ball. It worked as they racked up close to 300 rushing yards, but still fell to the Hurricanes, 28-27. Florida State kicker Xavier Beitia missed a 43-yard field goal attempt as time expired to break the hearts of Florida State fans. The “Wide Left” game, as it became to be known, was a game in which Rix did not do much of anything. He didn’t lose the game for the Seminoles, but he also didn’t win it for them. He went 8-19 for 83 measly yards and a touchdown. He could never get into a rhythm and the Hurricanes' defense harassed him once again.
3. Chris Rix vs. Miami 2003
A rain-drenched Doak Campbell Stadium was the sight for No. 2 Miami against No. 5 Florida State. This game was a complete nightmare for Chris Rix as he seemed to complete more passes to Sean Taylor than to his own team. The late great Taylor intercepted two passes from Rix, and returned one of them for a touchdown. Rix completed just 20 of 42 passes and also lost two fumbles. His team fell behind 22-0 and lost by a final count of 22-14 thanks to a garbage-time touchdown. Rix continued to struggle against the Hurricanes and Florida State fans were beginning to wonder if he would ever figure things out. He would get another crack at the Canes in the Orange Bowl later on that season.
2. Chris Rix vs. Miami 2004 Orange Bowl
On January 1, 2004, Florida State and Miami met in the Orange Bowl for a rematch of their regular season game that was dominated by Miami. However, Rix was even worse this time around as he went 6-19 for 96 yards and a touchdown with one interception. Those numbers are not going to beat a good Miami team, and add in the fact that he went just 2-12 in the second half and you get a performance that just will not do. Miami won the game 16-14 and Rix fell to 0-4 against his southern nemesis. He had one last chance, but this time it would be the first game of the 2004 season, and it would also be Miami’s first game as a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
1. Chris Rix vs. Miami 2004
Florida State came into the season No. 4 and Miami was ranked No. 5. This game was made even more important by Miami joining the ACC. Rix had one last chance to get this black mark off of his resume, but he did not save his best for last. Chris Rix was absolutely awful the entire night, a night that cemented his legacy as the only quarterback to go 0-5 against one team. Rix completed 12-28 passes and failed to score a touchdown. In fact, the Seminoles' offense did not even cross the goal line and only mustered up 164 total yards. Rix helped the losing cause by throwing two interceptions and losing two fumbles, one of which was in overtime that sealed Florida State’s fate. Miami won the game 16-10 in overtime. In Rix’s five games against Miami, he went 59-138 (43 percent completion percentage) for 744 yards, five touchdowns, nine interceptions and five lost fumbles. He did some good things at Florida State, but will sadly be remembered for what he didn’t do.