REDWOOD CITY (CBS SF) — EA Sports has announced plans to bring back a college football game, creating a new version of the popular franchise for the first time since 2013.
The division of Redwood City-based Electronic Arts announced Tuesday a partnership with college trademark licensing company CLC to develop the game, with a scheduled release date still to be determined. According to a press release, the development of the game “is just underway, with launch timing still to come as the project progresses in the years ahead.”READ MORE: Bay Area Health Expert Hails Potential of Single-Shot COVID-19 Vaccine in Pandemic Battle
The title of the game, which was called ‘NCAA Football’ until it was discontinued in 2014, will now be “EA Sports College Football.”
— EA SPORTS (@EASPORTS) February 2, 2021
“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 in a preparted statement. “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.”READ MORE: High School Girl Sues San Mateo County, State of California to Allow Indoor Youth Sports
EA Sports said the college football game has been one of the most-requested games from its users.
“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 CLC CEO Cory Moss, in a press release. “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.”
While the game will include the rights to more than 100 colleges and universities featuring their logos, stadiums, uniforms, and gameday traditions, the game will not include student-athlete names, images and likenesses (NIL).
The NCAA currently does not allow student-athletes to profit from their NIL rights while attending college. However, the NCAA is increasingly under fire for the multi-billion dollar profits generated by college athletics which some critics say are made by a system that is exploitative of minorities.
In the past year, more than two dozen states have either passed or proposed laws making it illegal for colleges to enforce the NCAA’s current NIL rules.
Last month, the NCAA delayed a planned vote on whether to allow college athletes to profit from their NIL for the first time. Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court is set to hear an antitrust case this summer involving NCAA caps on education-related compensation and benefits for student-athletes in Division I football and basketball programs.MORE NEWS: Longtime San Francisco Merchants Lament Recent Spike in Burglaries
EA Sports said it was continuing to watch the developments closely and would reveal more about the new college football franchise and related product launch timings in the future.