The NCAA has a long and storied tradition of milking student-athletes for everything they’re worth while doing everything in its power to prevent them from seeing a single penny of the mountains of cash they’re responsible for generating, but in 2013, it lost one fairly lucrative source of revenue as the result of the class action lawsuit responsible for the death of the NCAA Football video game franchise.
It’s hard to blame the players who were less than thrilled with having their name, image, and likeness used in various NCAA games without being offered a single sliver of the pie, but it’s also hard to not hold a slight grudge when you consider you have to A) own an ancient console and B) be willing to drop an obscene amount of money on a physical copy of an old NCAA Football installment if you want to get the virtual college football experience.
Over the past few years, fans of the franchise have been treated to some glimmers of hope, as the CEO of EA said the company was very down to revive the series and NCAA president Mark Emmert revealed he was also open to figuring out a way to make it happen (only for the organization to crush our hopes and dreams when it unveiled its proposal to compensate players).
Last year, the federal government got in on the action after lawmakers introduced a bill that addressed this incredibly important issue of national interest. However, on Tuesday, we learned we won’t have to rely on that piece of legislation, as EA Sports dropped an absolute bomb by announcing NCAA Football is officially coming back.
— EA SPORTS (@EASPORTS) February 2, 2021
Details are still fairly scarce and there doesn’t seem to be a concrete timeline for the release of the revival (some people who know much more about this topic than I do are guessing it will be at least a couple of years).
From EA: "Development of EA SPORTS College Football is just underway, with launch timing still to come as the project progresses in the years ahead."
We're looking at 2-3 years probably. And by that time the players should be in position to be paid (NIL laws and player's union)
— Bryan Wiedey (@pastapadre) February 2, 2021
As of right now, the company says the title will include over 100 schools and “feature the logos, stadiums, uniforms, [and] gameday traditions” we’ve been deprived of for far, far too long. It’s worth noting there aren’t currently any plans to incorporate the name, images, and likenesses of actual college football players, but even if the game is closer to the generic version that shouldn’t have taken this long to make, I don’t see how you can complain (although I’m sure some athletes will do exactly that if they’re not able to work out some sort of deal).
What a wonderful day for NCAA Football fans, and therefore, of course, the world.