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EA Sports College Football: Here’s How Real Players Will Get Into the Game for the First Time

As the beloved video game franchise gears up for a 2024 return, EA has linked with OneTeam Partners to handle player licensing on an individual opt-in basis.

July 9, 2013. Think about not where you were, but who and what you were on that day — the one in which the final edition of EA Sports’ NCAA Football video game franchise debuted before the beloved annual offering was discontinued. As the years rolled on, we felt lost — you can only play out so many decades of your Dynasty save before your star QB is one of your original random-gen recruits’ grandkids and the sum total of your choices in life feel like psychological scar tissue that will never heal.

Fortunately, in 2021, EA announced that the franchise was coming back, penciling in summer 2023 as the ideal date of return. And while that timeline was eventually confirmed to have been pushed back to 2024, it is indeed coming back with a fresh coat of paint in the NIL era as EA Sports College Football, and on Wednesday, we got a taste of just how the dynamics of name, image, and likeness will allow your program’s favorite players to get themselves into the game (literally) for the very first time.

As reported by ESPN’s Michael Rothstein, EA has joined with OneTeam Partners to allow players to license their NIL rights for use in the game on an individual opt-in basis.

Rothstein notes that more than 120 FBS football programs have committed to join the franchise, and that EA’s goal is to have 100% participation — as of this writing, that would mean 133 schools. Past EA games also featured a limited number of FCS programs; there’s nothing to report on this front so far for EA Sports College Football.

Naturally, as with any NIL deal, athletes would be compensated for their depiction in the new games. It is expected that participating players would be paid equally, but it is currently too early to know just how all this would actually look in terms of actual dollar values.

OneTeam Partners specializes in group licensing — don’t sweat it, that’s exactly what it sounds like — and works directly with sporting organizations and labor unions like the NFLPA, WNBPA, MLSPA, MLB Players, Inc., and the USWNT Players Association to secure commercial opportunities for the athletes they represent.

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About The Author
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn
Sam Dunn is the Managing Editor of Boardroom. Before joining the team, he was an editor and multimedia talent for several sports and culture verticals at Minute Media and an editor, reporter, and site manager at SB Nation. A specialist in content strategy, copywriting, and SEO, he has additionally worked as a digital consultant in the corporate services, retail, and tech industries. He cannot be expected to be impartial on any matter regarding the Florida Gators or Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter @RealFakeSamDunn.