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EA Sports revives college football games, but without NCAA involvement

EA Sports' new line of College Football games won't feature the names or likenesses of any real-world players, a likely result of past legal troubles with the NCAA.

Alissa McAloon, Publisher

February 2, 2021

1 Min Read

EA is getting back into the college football game with a new series: EA Sports College Football.

It's not EA Sports' first foray into the world of college football, but it does end a seven-plus year hiatus for the niche that came about after a messy legal battle involving EA and the NCAA over the use of player likenesses.

While the NCAA isn't on board, EA has partnered with the Collegiate Licensing Company to secure the rights to use logos, stadiums, uniforms, and other imagery for real-world college football teams. In addition to lacking the NCAA branding, EA Sports' College Football won't feature the actual likenesses of any players.

Doing so likely aims to dodge the complexities surrounding licensing likenesses for real-world players following both the 2014 decision in that landmark case on player likenesses and laws that have sprung up in the years since that ruling.

EA Sports executive VP and GM Cam Weber shares a bit more on that omission in a chat with the Washington Post, noting as well that "we’re at a point in time where the schools and conferences are comfortable partnering and building a college football game again and … a lot of that is excluding name, image, likeness of players.

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