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NCAA will no longer partner with EA Sports

NEW YORK — Hang on to NCAA Football 2014, all you video game fans. It will be a collector's edition.

The NCAA said Wednesday it will no longer allow Electronic Arts Inc. to use its logo starting next year. The move ends a lucrative business deal with the gaming industry giant and comes as the NCAA fights a high-profile lawsuit that says the governing body owes billions of dollars to former players for allowing their likenesses to be used for free.

The NCAA said it won't seek a new contract with EA Sports, which manufactures the popular game, beyond the current one that expires in June 2014. However, that won't stop EA Sports from producing a college football video game depicting powerhouse schools like Alabama, Ohio State and Oregon, and the Redwood City, Calif.-based company made that clear.

"EA Sports will continue to develop and publish college football games, but we will no longer include the NCAA names and marks," said Andrew Wilson, executive vice president. "Our relationship with the Collegiate Licensing Co. is strong and we are already working on a new game for next generation consoles."

The company reported $3.8 billion in net revenue during its last fiscal year and, aside from its NCAA Football franchise, is well known for Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer and other games.

Todd Mitchell, senior analyst with New York-based Brean Capital, LLC, said losing the NCAA brand isn't likely to hurt EA Sports. He estimated NCAA Football accounts for only about 5 percent of EA Sports' revenue, or about $125 million.

"It's nice to have the brand, but it's more about the characters," he said.

lions offer New bowl venue: The Big Ten and the Detroit Lions have announced a six-year agreement to play a bowl game at Ford Field, and the ACC will provide the opponent, the Associated Press reported. The new bowl will start in the 2014 season and it has not been named or sponsored.

USF: The Bulls hosted former Auburn running back Michael Dyer over the weekend. Dyer, 22, broke Bo Jackson's Auburn freshman rushing record, topping 1,000 yards in each of his two seasons and earning offensive MVP honors with 143 yards in Auburn's national championship win after the 2010 season. He has, however, been dismissed from Auburn and Arkansas State. … Jefferson senior Juwuan Brown, one of the bay area's top linebacker recruits, orally committed to USF.

Basketball

Michigan: Fresh off the first Final Four appearance of his career, coach John Beilein has a new contract. Athletic director Dave Brandon said Beilein signed a three-year extension that keeps him with the Wolverines through the 2018-19 season. Beilein, 60, will make $2.45 million a year in total compensation. The Wolverines lost in the NCAA title game last season to Louisville.

Minnesota: Shooting guard Malik Smith will be able to play for the Gophers after coming from FIU with coach Richard Pitino. The NCAA approved a transfer waiver for the 6-foot-2 Smith, who will be a senior. He averaged 14.7 points and 2.7 rebounds last season for FIU while setting a school record with 96 made 3-pointers.

Stanford: Hall of Fame women's coach Tara VanDerveer received a long-term contract. She said she signed a new deal; the school is not announcing the number of additional years on the contract. VanDerveer, 60, is 742-152 at Stanford and 894-203 overall. She is six wins shy of becoming the fifth women's basketball coach with 900 victories.

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.

NCAA will no longer partner with EA Sports 07/17/13 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 11:07pm]
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