NCAA settles with players on EA lawsuit for $20 million

Submitted by BlueCube on June 9th, 2014 at 10:59 PM

Per CBS Sports.

Football and basketball players appearing in the games  from 2005 to 2014 are expected to receive approximately $1,000 per year they appeared in the game. It applies only to players at certain schools.

As mentioned below, the NCAA is still denying the claims of the O'Bannon case and that case is proceeding. This only applies to the use of their image in the EA games.



June 9th, 2014 at 11:05 PM ^

and was scheduled to go to trial in 2015.  Pales in significance to O'Bannon, which started today, and potentially paves the way for individuals to market their own likenesses if NCAA cartel is judged to be in violation of antitrust laws.

Interesting part of Keller is that NCAA is saying it's OK with payments going to current players who joined the class and are entitled to proceeds.  They're giving as much tactical ground as they possibly can and fighting on the ground that counts, i.e. the antitrust issue.


June 9th, 2014 at 11:07 PM ^

"The NCAA said the settlement will award $20 million to various Division I football and men's basketball players who attended certain universities during the years the games were sold."

From the players' view, I believe, this helps to desconstruct that the argument that the NCAA maintained that the selection of numbers and/or likenesses was random when the NCAA used them in various media. Clearly - no, obviously - it was not. Hopefully, this helps to pave the way for schools recognizing that they make on these kids, if you will.


June 9th, 2014 at 11:32 PM ^

how the NCAA can claim this money isn't related to compensation for on field performance and also require a waiver to keep athletes receiving settlement funds eligible? Is this just typical nonsense we've gotten used to or am I missing something?


June 10th, 2014 at 11:09 AM ^

Again, stupid athletes not wanting to be exploited!  

This perfectly crystalizes why the players are complaining.  Fans buy these games because they want to play as their favorite college players.  EA then says the characteristics are "totally random", yet UM a couple years ago had this #16 who was really fast but a mediocre thrower.  And oh yeah, Texas A&M absolutely had a stud QB who was a sophomore but totally wasn't Johnny Football.

My point is, the reason these games made money was because they featured the players on the field in everything but name.  If "paying kids we are exploiting" is the reason they won't make these games (which I absolutely don't believe will be the long-term case), then so be it.


June 10th, 2014 at 6:42 AM ^

No kidding. I don't play video games anymore but that sucks. That and Madden were the only games I bought for about 10 years. You know most of these dudes that are suing played the game. Is it really worth 3 or 4 grand?


June 10th, 2014 at 11:02 AM ^

Come on, it's obviously not about the specific amount of money.  The case was about the idea that it was laughable that the NCAA claimed that the likeness of players were not used.  They were making millions of dollars off of these kids faces and claiming they were not.  It isn't about whether the game was fun or not.


June 10th, 2014 at 11:11 AM ^

To get a tiny sliver of the million-dollar franchises their likenesses gave immense value to?  Again, I don't see why there is a groundswell of support for a bunch of video game executives who were getting away with not paying for the likenesses of the players that made their games so valuable.  


June 10th, 2014 at 6:55 AM ^

ESPN reports that it was EA that settled, but they could be wrong. They also reported that this was being successfully used us far in the O'Bannon case as it now eliminates the ability to use video games as part of this case. The NCAA apparently had a good first day in the case, but it has a way to go.

I personally understand how the NCAA can say getting a payout from a court settlement is not the same as being paid, especially since they are no longer making the video game.


June 10th, 2014 at 9:44 AM ^

some will applaud this as a "win" for those being "exploited", but all it really is is a massive loss for the fans of college football.  A few ex-players get chump change, and no one will ever make an NCAA related video game again.  Meanwhile, players will continue to be exploited, because let's be honest--the video games were really the least of their problems.


I don't disagree that the system needs to make some changes.  But was basically destroying all ability to create college sports video games really at the top of the list of important things to accomplish?

Monocle Smile

June 10th, 2014 at 10:10 AM ^

I'm not exactly savvy on the details of "likeness," but what would happen if someone made an NCAA game, but all the players had Slenderman heads? I guess it really depends on what determines "likeness."

I'm not too torn up about it. I support this case because of the meta effects, not the specifics. Of course players will continue to be exploited to a degree, but this lets the people upstairs know that they can and will be challenged at a certain point.


June 10th, 2014 at 11:13 AM ^

I seriously doubt that this is the end of college sports games.  EA and 2K aren't going to pass up all that money.  They'll just wait for the NCAA-union situation to hammer itself out, then go about licensing the games from the new governing entity.  To the gamemakers, it's just a check they are going to be paying to a licensing body like they always did.  How it gets distributed isn't of their concern.


June 10th, 2014 at 12:50 PM ^

Yeah a lawsuit that could help change college sports for the better is a loss for everyone because we can't play a video for the 5 years it takes to settle this.

Unicycle Firefly

June 10th, 2014 at 11:50 AM ^

I wonder how many players were actually upset about their likeness appearing in the game. I went to a school with an FBS program (albeit a pretty bad one) and was friends with a few of the players. They were thrilled every year when the new NCAA game came out and they could play "themselves" on the game.