By FRANCO PANIZO
If it’s in the game, it’s in the game. Unless the NCAA is involved apparently.
EA Sports has decided to remove 13 women players from its upcoming video game, FIFA 16, because of concerns from the NCAA. The college sports organization does not permit its students to be compensated financially for participating and competing in athletics, and it recently told EA Sports that 13 players would be putting their eligibility at risk if they were included in the latest installment of the popular soccer series.
EA Sports never paid or intended to pay the players for their appearances in the historic first soccer video game to include women’s teams, but nonetheless has given in to the NCAA’s request so as to not put the 13 players in jeopardy of being punished. None of the players are members of the U.S. Women’s National Team.
“Of the hundreds of players on these rosters, 13 are currently attending or likely to attend NCAA-sanctioned schools in the U.S.,” EA said in a statement on its website. “The NCAA recently informed EA Sports that these 13 student-athletes would be risking their eligibility for collegiate athletics by being included in FIFA 16.
“We do not agree with this position. All rights were secured following standard protocol with national governing bodies and federations, and none of these NCAA student-athletes or potential student-athletes were to be individually compensated by EA Sports for their inclusion in the game.”
The 13 players in question, which will be replaced on their countries’ rosters by other real players further down their respective depth charts, are below:
Kadeisha Buchanan, Canada
Jessie Fleming, Canada
Ashley Lawrence, Canada
Janine Beckie, Canada
Rebecca Quinn, Canada
Sura Yekka, Canada
Celia Jiménez, Spain
Tanya Samarzich, Mexico
Greta Espinoza, Mexico
Christina Murillo, Mexico
Amanda Perez, Mexico
Emily Alvarado, Mexico
Maria Sanchez, Mexico
FIFA 16 will hit stores nationwide in the United States on Tuesday, and it will be available on the Xbox One, Playstation 4, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 consoles. It will also be played on Microsoft Windows, Android and iOS.
What do you think about this news? Should the 13 players be allowed to be included in FIFA 16? Hoping at least one of them fights the NCAA on this?
Share your thoughts below.