Video game developer Electronic Arts Inc (EA/EA Sports) is bringing back its popular EA Sports college football game. Partnering with Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC), the nation’s leading collegiate trademark licensing company, EA Sports announced it will be the exclusive developer of simulation college football video game experiences.
The demand for the return of its college sports games — especially NCAA Football — has been made abundantly clear to EA Sports over the past several years.
“We’ve heard from the millions of passionate fans requesting the return of college football video games,” said Cam Weber, EA Sports EVP and GM. “We love the energy, tradition and pageantry of college football and I am beyond thrilled to say we are back in development. We have a lot of really exciting work ahead of us, and a great team that is eager to bring a new game to players in the next couple of years.”
“We’re very excited to collaborate with EA Sports to bring back the college football franchise, one of the most popular collegiate licensed products in our history,” said Cory Moss, CLC CEO. “The college football video game connects passionate fans to college brands and introduces new fans to the storied traditions, excitement, and game day experience that make college football unique.”
The hope is the new EA Sports franchise will deliver authentic college football experiences and the high-quality gameplay that fans have long loved in college football games. Through the CLC partnership, the franchise will include the rights to more than 100 institutions featuring the logos, stadiums, uniforms, game day traditions fans have come to expect. While this college game will not include student-athlete names, images and likenesses (NIL), EA Sports is continuing to watch those developments closely.
EA Sports reaches gamers all around the globe, and in the past year introduced six new console and PC experiences, as well as ongoing live service offerings on PC and mobile. EA Sports franchises delivered sports entertainment to millions of fans with an array of authentic, deep experiences that brought players closer to the sports, teams, and leagues that they love.
In ESPN’s report, Michael Rothstein and Dan Murphy noted that the NCAA rules don’t need any changes for EA Sports to proceed with an official title.
“Current NCAA rules prohibit EA Sports from paying players to use their names, images, and likenesses in the game,” they write. “If those rules are still in effect when the game is released, EA Sports plans to include real details such as team names, mascots, and uniforms but not anything that would resemble the real players on those rosters. EA Sports announced it would stop making its college football game in 2013 shortly before the company agreed to pay part of a reported $40M to former college players to settle a lawsuit filed by former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon. The lawsuit argued that it was illegal for EA Sports to sell a game with characters that looked strikingly similar to real athletes without paying those athletes.”