EA Sports delivered disheartening news to college football fans on Tuesday.
First reported by Matt Brown of Extra Points, the gaming studio announced a delayed release of EA Sports College Football – the franchise formerly known as NCAA Football – from 2023 to 2024.
Per multiple sources familiar with the situation, EA is expected to announce tomorrow morning around 10 AM ET that EA Sports College Football will be delayed until 2024. More details to come tomorrow. https://t.co/iatNaUnnEz— Matt Brown (@MattBrownEP) November 22, 2022
On Feb. 2, 2021, EA Sports announced its beloved college football video game would return but did not offer a timetable for its release.
“For those who never stopped believing...” the tweet read, with a graphic that included the words “College Football is back.”
But then there was silence. Fans’ jubilation turned into eager anticipation for Electronic Arts to reveal any more information about the newest college football game.
On Sept. 14, over 18 months after EA Sports' initial announcement, The Athletic's Chris Vannini reported that those involved with the game's production were expecting to release it before the start of the 2023 season, most likely in July.
The anticipation grew, and Ohio State fans likely started planning how they could bring the Buckeyes – with realistic player builds thanks to name, image and likeness deals – to beat Michigan, win the Big Ten Championship, reach the College Football Playoff and claim a national title as leader of the program.
Unfortunately, the delayed release means those who are anxious to play the game will have to wait a little bit longer for the franchise's latest release – one that, should it come in 2024, will hit the market 11 years after the installment of NCAA Football 14, which came out on July 9, 2013.
Here is the official update from EA Sports on Tuesday morning:
It’s Rivalry Week!
As college football fans everywhere gear up for one of the most heated and colorful weeks in sports, there is no better time to talk about EA SPORTS™ College Football. When we announced the official return of college football to the virtual fields, the response was overwhelming. We heard your excitement loud and clear, and we’re excited to be making this game for you. We’ve also heard that you want to know more, so here’s a little peek and a few updates from our EA Tiburon studio.
Authenticity is at the heart of EA SPORTS College Football. It’s the top priority for the world-class development team that has been diligently building the brand-new game from the ground up on next-generation platforms. It takes meticulous work to bring to life the pageantry and gameday traditions of the teams you know and love. Our team has been working to accurately represent more than 120 NCAA Division I universities, all 10 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) conferences, and the College Football Playoffs, with more institutions to come.
Our team is in the process of incorporating thousands of art files provided directly by the universities to recreate each university’s unique gameday atmosphere. We’ve also gone onsite to capture state-of-the-art 3D scans at dozens of stadiums while also gathering references for team runouts, mascots, cheerleaders, uniforms, historic school items, and more. Plus, the team has been able to plug into onsite broadcast audio feeds for the first time, allowing them to capture live gameday crowd audio, and have started recording some of the most recognizable commentators in the sport for use in-game. We are also working to include college athletes in a meaningful way in the game, extending our commitment to authenticity as we create a level of college football immersion like never before.
It is also critically important that we not only capture the authentic sights and sounds of college football, but that EA SPORTS College Football feels distinctly like college football with gameplay. On the field, college football has its own style, speed, plays, and flair that our team is deeply committed to bringing to the virtual fields. Especially in fan-favorite modes, Dynasty and Road to Glory, which are back in EA SPORTS College Football, completely evolved for the next generation of college football fans. Whether managing a team in Dynasty or seeking to become a campus legend in Road to Glory, familiar features like customization will be present, but also new factors like the transfer portal and much more will play a big role.
Now that we’ve shared a taste of the work in progress, we wanted to confirm for the first time when you can expect this brand-new game to be in your hands: EA SPORTS College Football will launch in Summer 2024.
Building a game like this from the ground up is complex, and we want to get it right for you.
Our entire EA SPORTS family is excited about the return of College Football, and we will have many more details to share with you in the coming months.
To stay updated on the latest EA SPORTS and college football news, follow on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram or visit https://www.ea.com/sports.