EA loses NCAA contract

With tough litigation, the NCAA ends it's profitable relationship with EA Sports.

Announced today, Electronic Arts will not be continuing the long-running NCAA Football franchise. NCAA declined to renew it’s contract with the publisher. Unless the NCAA reconsiders this lack of renewal, this will end a relationship first founded in 1997 with NCAA Football ’98. 

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“Given the current business climate and costs of litigation, we determined participating in this game is not in the best interests of the NCAA,”  they stated in a press release earlier today. “The NCAA Football 2014 video game will be the last to include the NCAA’s name and logo.” 

The current contract expires in June 2014, so there is still time for the NCAA to re-evalute their position and to conclude the aforementioned litigation. 

The NCAA is currently involved in a class action law suit about EA using the likenesses of players in the games and that they then conspired with the electronics company to ensure that athletes recieved zero compensation for the use of their likenesses and names. The plaintiffs allege that the NCAA, EA, and the Collegiate Licensing Company (who handles the licensing for individual schools) violated anti-trust law. 

Since the NCAA announcement, EA Sports has made it’s own statement via Twitter through ESPN’s Brett McMurphy; “EA Sports will still have college football video game beyond 2014, just won’t be affiliated w/ NCAA.” 

Individual colleges and teams can still choose to seperately continue their relationships with EA. 

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Amanda Wallace
Former rugby player, social media person, and occasional writer.