Seth Rollins has become a household name ever since he made his WWE main roster debut along with The Shield back at Survivor Series in 2012. But Rollins had been wrestling for more than seven years prior to his WWE debut, and had already made a name for himself in Ring of Honor and on the Independent Circuit.
Rollins' career has been one that has captivated the WWE Universe. From injuries to scandals, the former World Champion has still managed to reach the top of his game in WWE. Despite living life in the public eye for the past five years, there are a lot of things that the WWE Universe are not aware of when it comes to Seth's career before he made his WWE debut.
At 31-years-old, Rollins is definitely not a spring chicken, which means that he lived a whole life before he was known as Seth Rollins. Like many WWE stars, wrestler don't get famous over night and Rollins really did work his way up the ladder in the wrestling world.
Here are 15 facts about his life before he was signed to WWE main roster and became a Hound of Justice.
15 Seth Rollins/Dean Ambrose
Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins have had a storied rivalry in WWE over the past few years after being known as brothers and two-thirds of The Shield. But even though Ambrose and Rollins have amazed fans with their deeply personal rivalry since the group split more than three years ago, their first encounter wasn't actually on WWE TV.
Rollins and Ambrose were both part of FCW and back in 2011, the duo collided in the historic first ever match between two of the biggest Indy stars at the time. It was for the FCW Championship and it was a match that proved that both these men would be World Champion one day. This also showed the chemistry they possessed whilst they were in the ring together.
14 Rollins Held John Laurinaitis Ransom When He Joined WWE
Seth Rollins talks openly about joining WWE in his new 'Building The Architect' DVD. He states that back in 2010 he had been offered a contract and verbally agreed on it with another promotion when he decided that he wanted to join WWE. So he called John Laurinaitis and told him that he was prepared to join this other company (presumably TNA) if he didn't hear back from him.
Laurinaitis told him that he liked what he had seen and that he wanted to talk to him. A few months later Seth moved to Florida and started working for FCW and was officially part of WWE's developmental set up. Laurinaitis has been behind some of the biggest people that WWE has signed over the past few years, without the WWE Universe actually knowing.
13 Rollins Is Not Very Close To His Father
Rollins was born in Davenport, Iowa. And even though it seems that he came from a stable family home, Rollins' father left his mother when he was quite young which has allowed the former World Champion to have an unbreakable bond with his mother instead.
Now Rollins mother runs everything to do with his Black and Brave training school while he is on the road and he is very close to her. It seems that he does still have some contact with his father but they are not as close as father and son would be expected to be because Rollins instead grew up with his mother. Despite all the obstacles in his life when he was younger, Rollins was always encouraged to go for his dream and he got there in the end.
12 Rollins Always Had A Chip On His Shoulder
Coming from what was considered a broken home and climbing his way up through the business the hard way, Rollins has always been the kind of wrestler who feels that he has a point to prove every time he steps in the ring. He has always had a chip on his shoulder and it is something that he has learned to deal with.
Rollins has had many arguments with WWE creative. Including one that almost cost him his job a few years ago, because he is the kind of star who always wants to do his best and always has something to say. He stated that when it reached the point where he no longer has something to say or something worth hearing, then that is when he will walk away, but it won't be for a while yet.
11 Rollins Is A Talented Writer
Seth is a former World Champion and even when his WWE career comes to an end, he will still have a career to jump into. Rollins is a very good writer and it's something that he has shown many times on Social Media. Also, through the way that he usually talks with such authority during all of his promos.
Writing is something that Rollins will pursue at some point and has a tattoo on his wrist as a reminder. It says 'forever' on what is said to be the back page of a book. Many people make the assumption that wrestlers become wrestlers because they are not educated. This is obviously wrong when it comes to Rollins, who is much smarter that the WWE Universe are led to believe.
10 WWE Tried To Humble Rollins
When Rollins first headed over to FCW, he was told that he would have to change his name and that he should forget about everything he has done in his career so far because none of it mattered. He had to start all over again from scratch.
The likes of Kevin Owens, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Finn Balor were all brought over in a different way and Rollins talks about this in his new DVD. These were frustrations were caused when he was told that everything he had walked for, everything that had happened in his career meant nothing. He said that he was signed when he was just 24-years-old and he definitely wasn't accepted with open arms, which was quite strange for him because he just didn't know what to expect.
9 Rollins Told Triple H To Give Him The NXT Championship
Triple H and Seth Rollins have become close over the past few years, having worked together in The Authority and having a number of matches against each other: The Shiled vs. Evolution and one-on-one at this year's WrestleMania. But the duo have always had a good working relationship.
Rollins revealed that he went to find Triple H when he found out about the NXT Championship Tournament and told him that he was the guy for the title. He said that he knew how important the first ever champion would be and he felt that he was the right guy to become the first ever champion. Triple H agreed because Rolins later became the inaugural title holder, something that he will always remain in the history books with.
8 Rollins' Best Friend Cesaro
Rollins and Cesaro have confirmed how close they have become as friends over the past few months with their many cute Social Media updates. But their friendship actually began long before either man joined WWE.
Rollins and Cesaro had many matches in Ring of Honor against each other and were then brought into NXT at the same time where they once again had a number of matches. Their careers have continued side by side over the past few years, so it is no wonder that they have ended up becoming good friends since they are always there for each other when they need to be. Rollins unsurprisingly has had more success than his Swiss friend, but there is plenty of time for Cesaro to reply with his own World Championship reign.
7 Rollins Began Backyard Wrestling When He Was 14
At 31-years-old, Rollins has already been involved in wrestling for 17 years. The former World Champion first dipped his toe in the water of wrestling when he was 14-years-old as he and many of his friends from the neighbourhood set up a trampoline style ring in their backyard and began practising.
Seth was referred to as "God" and his finishing move was a flip through a table. So even at that age, it was obvious that he was going to be a Superstar who would take risks. He continued this for a few years before he made his official wrestling debut for Scott County Wrestling five years later at just 19-years-old, and would go on to become their Heavyweight Champion in the months that followed.
6 Rollins Pinned Austin Aries To Win ROH World Championship
Austin Aries and Seth Rollins are both on the Raw brand right now. And even though they are yet to cross paths because they are in different divisions, both men are already quite familiar with each other from before they even decided to make the switch over to WWE.
Seth Rollins became quite the star as Tyler Black when he was in Ring of Honor and when the time came for him to make the step up and become ROH World Champion, it was Aries that he pinned to win the title. The duo had an outstanding rivalry that took over Ring of Honor and proved that if WWE wanted to, they could easily recreate something like that in WWE now they have acquired both of the talents.
5 Rollins Was Convinced To Join WWE By Evan Bourne
Evan Bourne may have left WWE a long time ago, and he may only be remembered for his incredible finisher and that RKO counter, but Evan has played a huge part in WWE over the past few years that the WWE Universe didn't even know about.
Rollins and Evan Bourne were good friends at the time when he was offered a WWE contract but was still wrestling for ROH and it seems that he didn't know if it was worth the risk. He asked Bourne his advice and he told him that it was worth it, so he signed for WWE. It seems that Rollins owes a lot to his old friend, without Evan the WWE Universe would never have been given the gift of the two-time World Champion.
4 Rollins Originally Wanted To Play Football
It has been well documented that Rollins grew up loving professional wrestling. He even set up his own promotion in his backyard and created his own character who he called "God." He would put on shows for his family and friends on a regular basis, but before Rollins was obsessed with wrestling and becoming a Superstar, he had his heart set on another career.
For most of his life, Rollins idolized Jerry Rice, from the San Francisco 49ers. This admiration led him to believe that he could have a career as a professional football player. Thankfully, it seems that this dream was short lived which is quite lucky for the WWE Universe, that his love of wrestling took over before his football dream could be realized. Otherwise, there may never have been an Architect.
3 Rollins' Crazy First Ring Names
Rollins started out his wrestling career in Scott County Wrestling when he was able to choose his own nickname because he was known as Gixx for a while. It was then decided that his name would be changed to Taj The Destroyer.
Even before he was the one who destroyed The Shield, Rollins was known as a destroyer, the clues were all there. Thankfully before he pushed on with his career he changed his ring name and became known as Tyler Black. A star was then born in Ring of Honor under his name and it is thought that this is what finally turned WWE's head and allowed them to sign him and send him to NXT. It's unlikely that WWE would have signed Gixx or Taj The Destroyer.
2 Rollins Almost Competed In Original NXT
Before NXT became the global phenomenon that it is right now, it instead took a game show format and was used to create WWE's 'next big star.' WWE was setting up for another season of NXT as the show format with the likes of Big E, Seth Rollins, Hunico, Adam Rose, Damien Sandow, and Bo Dallas all competing for a place on the main roster and a WWE contract.
The WWE production team filmed the shots that were needed to build up the show and all of the stars were under the impression that it was happening. And then it just didn't. WWE decided that they would reformat NXT instead and make it into a brand of its own, which was one of the best decisions the company has ever made. But there is a question of who could have won a competition between six of WWE's future stars?
1 Rollins Was Offered A Deal With TNA
Back in 2010, Rollins was ROH World Champion. He had been offered a contract with TNA and one with WWE as well. He was in a place in his life when he didn't actually know what to do. He could have easily renewed his ROH contract or made the decision to head over to Impact, but instead, he made the gamble to join WWE.
How different would Rollins' career have been if he had decided to join TNA instead of making that decision to join WWE with the help of Evan Bourne? Would Rollins have still become the star he is today? With all the problems Impact are having right now, it is quite unlikely but it seems that Rollins would have eventually made his way to WWE anyway. He was built for the company.