By Barry Janoff
July 18, 2013: The NCAA said on this week that it would not renew its deal with EA Sports when the current alliance expires in June 2014.
The impact will be most apparent in EA Sports' NCAA College Football, which has generated video games and related content and activation since 1997. The final product in the series will be NCAA Football 2014, released earlier this month.
EA Sports said it would continue to produce college football games via a pact it has with IMG College and its Collegiate Licensing Co. division, which brokers deals between universities and companies.
The decision comes as a growing number of former college student/athletes have joined or plan to join lawsuits fighting the use of their images and stats in video games without specific consent and without financial remuneration. Although college team uniforms are used, players names are not included in the EA Sports' NCAA Football games.
"Our relationship with the Collegiate Licensing Co. is strong and we are already working on a new game for next generation consoles."
"The NCAA has never licensed the use of current student-athlete names, images or likenesses to EA," the NCAA said in a statement. "The NCAA has no involvement in licenses between EA and former student-athletes. Member colleges and universities license their own trademarks and other intellectual property for the video game. They will have to independently decide whether to continue those business arrangements in the future.
According to EA Sports, "Our relationship with the Collegiate Licensing Co. is strong and we are already working on a new game for next generation consoles which will launch next year and feature the college teams, leagues and all the innovation fans expect from EA Sports."
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