EA Sports is back in the college football business. The company has confirmed that it will make another college football game, after almost a decade away from the sport, with the last edition being NCAA Football 14.
The new game will be under the EA Sports College Football monicker, based on today’s report by ESPN. It doesn’t sound like the NCAA wants to be in the business of sports video games anymore, especially those that will likely pay players for their Name, Image, and Likeness down the road, once laws change, as is expected.
A look back at NCAA Football 14 is a real blast from the past. Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson graced the cover. The fact that he was the last NCAA cover athlete may be a lasting legacy, as many people have been playing that game consistently since it came out in the summer of 2013.
FOX College Football took a peek back at the ratings from that game. While players were not named in the game, EA Sports made pretty accurate avatars of most college football players, so the best players in the game were pretty reflective of real life, at least based on the summer ahead of that game. The top player: South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney.
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) February 2, 2021
This is a pretty interesting look at just how inexact science is when it comes to predicting which college stars will translate to the NFL. Clowney, who has a perfect rating, went No. 1 overall in the 2014 NFL Draft, and has been a productive NFL player, making three Pro Bowls. He’s not the all-world talent that many expected him to be at the next level.
C.J. Mosley is the most successful of these 96+ rated player, with four Pro Bowls under his belt. He was also a second-team All-Pro in each of those four years, 2014, and 2016-18. Jake Matthews also has a Pro Bowl under his belt, reaching the game in 2018.
Teddy Bridgewater was a young star quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, reaching a Pro Bowl in 2015. A devastating injury derailed his career. He’s made a miraculous recovery, and started for the Carolina Panthers this year, but his time as a top-line NFL starting quarterback seems like it will over soon.
Johnny Manziel quickly flamed out of the league, and hasn’t made an NFL appearance since 2015. Aaron Murray was a Kansas City Chiefs backup from 2014-15, but has bounced between practice squads and startup leagues in the years since.
De’Anthony Thomas is a role player, who is primarily a special teams contributor. He has seven total touchdowns in the pros. A.J. McCarron is a career backup. Marqise Lee had a few decent years with the Jacksonville Jaguars, but has three catches for 18 yards since 2017, missing the 2018 season due to injury and 2020 as a COVID-19 opt-out.
Braxton Miller has been on practice squads the last few years, after catching 34 passes for 261 yards and two touchdowns as a Houston Texan in 21 games between 2016 and 2017.