James Van Der Beek Jokes About ‘Operation Varsity Blues’

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A bombshell series of federal indictments dropped Tuesday that uncovered a massive scheme in which wealthy families bribed their children into elite colleges, with some help from a corrupt consultant, as well as various athletic coaches and other university officials who were on the take, per The Inquisitr. In addition to coaches and business executives, the indictments ensnared two well-known actresses, Lori Loughlin of Full House and Felicity Huffman of Desperate Housewives and Sports Night.

The operation had another holiday tie: it went by the official nickname “Operation Varsity Blues.” This appears to be a reference to the 1999 movie Varsity Blues, which just marked its 20th anniversary. It told the story of a high school football team in Texas, with Dawson’s Creek star James Van Der Beek in the leading role of the quarterback.

Van Der Beek reacted to the news with a quip on Twitter.

“If only there was a succinct turn of phrase these kids could have used to inform their parents they were not desirous of their life path…,” Van Der Beek tweeted, while quoting a news story about Operation Varsity Blues.

This was a reference to that movie’s most famous line, in which Van Der Beek, in an iffy Texas accent, confronts his football-mad father and declares “I don’t want your life!”

In the film, directed by Head of the Class veteran Brian Robbins, Van Der Beek played Jonathan Moxon, a backup quarterback who’s more interested in academic excellence than he is in football, even though his failed football player father (Thomas F. Duffy) pushes him towards the game.

Jon Voight played the school’s legendary football coach Bud Kilmer, while the late Paul Walker co-starred in the film as Lance Harbor, the team’s quarterback who is felled by injury, forcing Moxon into the game. Amy Smart played his girlfriend, with Ali Larter portraying the town bad girl. Ron Lester, who has also passed away since the film, played Moxon’s friend Billy Bob, an offensive lineman on the football team.

Varsity Blues was a modest hit at the time, and it won Van Der Beek awards for Best Breakout Male Performance from both the MTV Movie Awards and the Teen Choice Awards.

Van Der Beek, now 42-years-old, is still acting, and was a regular last year in the acclaimed TV series Pose. His most recent movie role was in Alexander Payne’s 2017 comedy/drama Downsizing. The actor’s social media presence often deals with his life as the father of five children.