New documents from a Rick Ross deposition earlier this year have surfaced online and reveal where the “Boss” claims he got his current rap moniker from.
According to the documents, Ross’ rap alias stems from sports and not notorious former drug lord Freeway Ricky Ross.
When questioned about how he decided to use “Rick Ross” as a professional name, the rapper unspooled a tale beginning when he was a football player at Miami Carol City Senior High School in the mid-1990s. Ross testified that he and his fellow offensive linemen called each other “Big East,” since they all wanted to attend the University of Miami, then a member of the Big East Conference. “That was my first nickname,” he said during the January 12 deposition. Ross then explained, “When I became All American, by the time I was in sophomore, I was the Big Boss. The Biggest Boss. That was a nickname.” (The Smoking Gun)
He also claimed the “Rick Ross” moniker indirectly sprouted from his “Big Boss” nickname.
At some point following his 1994 graduation, Ross testified, “a friend” mistook his nickname to be “Rick Ross,” not “Big Boss.” The deposition does not further identify this purported friend or the level of his hearing deficiencies. “And when he said, when he brought it up to me, it became my moniker. From Big East to the Big Boss, the Biggest Boss for my senior year, I was All American. When I finished high school and pursued music, it came into Rick Ross. So this is ’96.” (The Smoking Gun)
Reports of the legal copyright infringement battle surfaced online last February.
Rick Ross and “Freeway” Ricky Ross have appeared in a Miami court as the ongoing battle over the name continues. Freeway Rick claims that Ross is antagonizing him throughout the process. Freeway Rick filed suit against the rapper back in 2010 and has been battling for trademark rights ever since. (Hip Hop Blog)
The two have gone back and forth with their legal dispute over the past couple years.
In May of 2010, Freeway Rick Ross filed a $10 million lawsuit against Rick Ross accusing him of profiting off of his name illegally. As a result, the judge ruled that he couldn’t sue because his criminal acts in the past had destroyed “any possibility that he has any valid trademark rights in his name, that have been violated by defendants.” The case was dismissed in Federal Court in November of 2010. (XXL Mag)
Check out a recent Rick Ross interview: