EA Sports confirmed a target release date for the upcoming release of their new college football game.
Cory Moss, CEO of Collegiate Licensing Co., said of Thursday that EA Sports is planning on launching the game during Summer 2023.
“That’s the hope,” Moss said, according to 247Sports’ Brandon Marcello.
With the announcement of the NCAA’s new NIL rules this year, the idea for the game was re-introduced. EA Sports made an official announcement on Feb. 2 of initial plans for the game’s return since it was discontinued after the release “NCAA Football ’14.”
MORE: Everything we know about the return of NCAA football video game
According to an unreleased document detailing EA Sports proposal to FBS Schools, the game could be released as early as July 1, 2023, and has a four-year license proposal through 2027.
Got another copy of the EA Sports/CLC proposal to FBS schools, dated Jan 15, with fewer redactions than previous copies. Here’s a bit more info on the money schools may make from the game:
Appears to be a four year license proposal pic.twitter.com/tVNegAXd8P
— Matt Brown (@MattBrownEP) June 25, 2021
The game is making an official return since it was discontinued. Although the original game didn’t use player names, it copied players’ jersey numbers, skin colors, and skillsets, which added to the controversy on the NCAA’s previous rulings on name, image, and likeness.
In 2014, UCLA basketball coach Ed O’Bannon and 19 student-athletes filed a lawsuit against the NCAA, Collegiate Licensing Company, and EA Sports, claiming that the organizations violated United States antitrust laws by not allowing athletes to get a share of the revenues generated from the use of their images in broadcasts and video games. After the court ruled that EA Sports had used athletes’ names and likeness without permission, the video game company was forced to pay settlements of around $60 million to athletes who appeared in the game from 2003-14.
Although a specific release date was not confirmed, more details will be released regarding the game’s new features as well as policies for NIL agreements.
“We are watching the recent developments regarding student-athlete name, image and likeness very closely” EA Sports verified in a statement on July 1. “It’s still very early stages at this point, and we plan to explore the possibility of including players in EA SPORTS College Football. For now, our development team is focused on working with our partners at CLC to ensure the game authentically showcases the great sport of college football and the more than 100 institutions signed on to be featured in our game.”