EA College Football is making a comeback according to EA Sports, though there’s no firm release date scheduled yet. Here’s everything we know about EA College Football based on official information, traditions, rumors, and what we expect to see down the road.
EA College Football is a highly anticipated release because it’s been missing for so long. College football fans have been waiting since 2013 for a new college football game for Xbox and PlayStation. And while EA Sports is being coy about EA College Football’s exact release date, at least we know the game’s in the works.
EA Sports’ surprise announcement didn’t have a lot of information. Unfortunately, it will likely take awhile for EA to outline College Football’s release timeline and more details.
There are some added complexities since college football players are not professionals like the players portrayed in Madden and other popular EA Sports games.
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Here’s a closer look at when you can expect the EA College Football release date, what features to expect, which consoles it will be on, and an estimated launch date.
EA College Football Launch Date
The initial EA College Football announcement was light on details and that means you can expect a much bigger launch announcement down the road. The launch date is when EA reveals the game, begins its full-on marketing push, and the game is almost ready.
As of right now, we’ve seen a few tweets and press releases, but not much more than that. During a recent Q&A, EA CEO Andrew Wilson said the team working on the game has made “incredible progress” so we’re certainly inching closer to an announcement.
— EA SPORTS (@EASPORTS) February 2, 2021
You can expect a future announcement to include EA College Football pre-orders, pre-order bonuses, EA College Football editions, and more.
If you see EA College Football pre-orders popup at a retailer or via a site like eBay, you’ll want to hold off and wait for the official EA College Football release details.
EA College Football Release Date
While many gamers were hopeful we’d get a new college football game in the near future, that’s out the window.
The company is currently “building out the team and deciding what direction they want the game to go in.” EA says the game will primarily be built by Electronic Arts’ Orlando studio. EA Tiburon is the same studio that develops the Madden series.
EA Sports typically releases sports games just before their corresponding real-world seasons begin. For example, EA Sports released Madden 24 on August 18th, just a few weeks before the start of the 2023-2024 NFL season.
So that means we’ll likely see the EA College Football release date land in July or August. And that timeline makes a ton of sense given what we’ve heard about the game’s release window.
In November, EA confirmed plans to release EA College Football in the summer of 2024. Initially it looked like the game would arrive in 2023, but that won’t happen.
Daryl Holt, EA Sports’ vice president and general manager, told ESPN that this is the “best date for us to bring the game that we think is going to meet or exceed our player expectations.”
EA says the EA College Football release date won’t get derailed by a lawsuit filed over the use of players’ name, image and likeness (NIL) and that it is moving forward with a release in the summer of 2024.
Teams in EA College Football
According to Holt, EA Sports has partnered with collegiate licensing company CLC to make sure the company has the ability to bring FBS schools, traditions, uniforms, and playbooks to EA College Football.
In an ESPN report from 2021, Notre Dame said it wouldn’t “provide its name, logos and other branding property to EA Sports.” The school said it wouldn’t “until new rules that determine whether athletes will be able to receive a cut of the game’s profits are finalized.” Notre Dame is one of the biggest brand names in college football.
Fortunately, things have changed. A report from ESPN claims that Notre Dame has “been in touch with EA Sports to help with NIL integration for the video game.” That doesn’t mean they’re in yet, but it’s a good sign.
The report also notes that several hold outs including Wisconsin, Northwestern, TCU, Fresno State and Tulane have opted into the game.
In a recent report, Matt Brown says the “industry expectation is that every single FBS institution, including the newest members joining from FCS, will participate in the game at launch.”
EA CEO Andrew Wilson says that as of August, the company’s “got many if not most of the schools licensed as part of our licensing platform.”
It’s also important to note that EA’s secured the rights to all 10 FBS conferences, as well as the College Football Playoff.
Real Players in EA College Football
Real college teams will be in the game and EA College Football may also include real players.
In 2020, EA told ESPN it was “planning to move forward without rosters that include the names, images or likenesses of real college players.” That was because NCAA rules prohibited athletes from selling their NIL rights while in college.
EA said it was monitoring the NIL legislation progress and that if the situation changed, the game would evolve with it. Well, things have changed.
The United States Supreme Court made a ruling barring the NCAA from limiting academic benefits to college athletes. In turn, the NCAA doesn’t block players from profiting off their name, image, and likeness.
EA Sports told ESPN that it has a contract with OneTeam Partners to “facilitate collegiate athletes’ names and likenesses” into the game.
The company says the partnership will allow for all eligible FBS players to opt in to have their likenesses included in EA College Football. Players will receive compensation for appearing in the game. How much they receive remains to be seen. EA says it hasn’t made any monetary offers to players yet though rumors suggest compensation could be as low as $500.
Naturally, players have taken umbrage with those rumors. Star USC quarterback Caleb Williams (a fan of the game, we should add) publicly questioned the amount in an interview with Yahoo Sports.
More recently, EA’s CEO Andrew Wilson says the company continues “to work with the various governing bodies of the sport in the country, and some key third-party partners we have, around how and when to include college athletes themselves into the game, and we’ll work very closely with them.”
Wilson added that he believes “that we’ll find a place where we can work in lockstep with the athletes for inclusion in the game.”
EA College Football Cover
NCAA Football 14, the last college football game released by EA Sports, featured Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson. Robinson was selected via fan voting and he was chosen over several other marquee names at the time.
We could see the company take a similar approach to the EA College Football cover now that we know real players will be included in the game.
EA College Football Price
EA hasn’t confirmed the EA College Football price, but here are a few things you can expect based on EA’s approach with other games like Madden and EA FC.
Assuming EA launches multiple EA College Football editions, we’ll likely see tiered pricing starting at $69.99. That’s how much the base version of Madden 24 for PS5, PS4 Xbox Series X/S, and Xbox One costs. If EA offers bundles with extras, you can expect those to cost more.
If EA decides to release EA College Football for last-generation consoles, we could see it use a similar price structure. Those details, of course, won’t come until the company is ready to announce the game.
EA College Football Features
It’ll be awhile before EA outlines the game in full, but Matt Brown has revealed some potential features.
According to Brown, EA is planning an Ultimate Team Mode for the game. This doesn’t come as much of a surprise given that it’s a cash cow for games like Madden and EA FC.
Brown also says the popular Dynasty mode from previous games “will be a part of the game in some capacity” and that has been confirmed by EA.
EA’s CEO says game “is really coming together, and really capturing all the action of pageantry, and the difference in college football versus the NFL.”
EA College Football Consoles
Now that the game’s official, many people are wondering about a potential EA College Football release for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. EA hasn’t confirmed anything yet, but we could certainly see a launch on those consoles.
Microsoft and Sony launched their Xbox One and PS4 consoles back in 2013. The consoles replaced the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. It would be foolish for EA Sports to limit College Football to the latest consoles as it would be missing out on sales to the millions of people that haven’t upgraded to the PS5 or Xbox Series X.
Madden 17, which arrived in 2016, was the last version to support PS3 and Xbox One. FIFA 19, which launched in 2019, was the last version of the game to support the PS3 and Xbox One.
So while nothing is confirmed, EA’s sports games have a history of supporting older consoles and that bodes well for those still holding onto a PS4, PS4 Pro, Xbox One, Xbox One S, or Xbox Series X.
Holt tells ESPN that conversations about bringing the game back started a few years ago and that the “technology they’ve seen on Next Gen platforms like the Sony PS5 and Xbox Series X” helped spur them along.
EA isn’t talking about the game’s features yet, but you can expect the PS5 and Xbox Series X versions to include at least some of the advancements we’ve seen on board Madden and EA FC for theses consoles.
EA College Football iPhone & Android
It’s unclear if EA will provide a college football experience to iPhone and Android users, but a recent job posting seems to hints at a mobile release.
This is especially true if EA College Football features an Ultimate Team (MUT, FUT) experience that lives and breathes on micro-transactions.
How to Play College Football on Xbox and PlayStation Right Now
If you want to play college football on a console right now you’ll need a PS3 or Xbox 360.
If you still own one of these consoles and you’re interested in playing, you can still find NCAA Football 14 through retailers like Amazon.
You’ll be happy to know there’s still a thriving community that supports the game with new roster updates to help keep it fresh.
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