Who Should be on the Cover of EA Sports NCAA 2023?
Last year, EA Sports announced that their iconic college football video game would soon be making it’s return. Due in large part to NIL, making it possible for players to profit off of their name, image and likeness. The only part missing was when, well that wait is apparently over, as EA Sports NCAA 2023 will reportedly be targeting a July 2023 release date.
.@EASPORTS is aiming to release a new college football video game in July 2023 🏈
Nearly 120 institutions have conceptually approved participation.
— Sports Business Journal (@SBJ) June 20, 2022
It’s encouraging to hear that over 120 college institutions have agreed to participate. The last thing we as college football fans need is someone like Alabama, Ohio State or Miami deciding they aren’t getting enough money and are nowhere to be found in the game.
One concern I have is how the players react to all of this, will they be willing to have their names included? Something tells me that is going to be an impossible task as certainly players like Caleb Williams and Quinn Ewers will see themselves as much more valuable then the various 2-star recruits over at UConn.
My best guess is we will be in the same boat as NCAA 14, this new college football game will allow us to load in custom rosters. To the people that have been making those bad boys year after year, you are doing gods work. We’ll likely need more of the same from you come 2023.
This all opens the door though for a cover athlete to walk away with a LUDICROUS amount of money. Maybe more than Nico Iamaleava’s reported $8 million at Tennessee. This is going to be the most anticipated sports video game release of all time. There are people who only know Denard Robinson because of his cover work in NCAA 14! So who will be the lucky athlete to dawn the cover in 2023?
There are two players featured on this list that have yet to play a snap of college football, the first is Ewers. Wouldn’t it be fitting for the first player to have a significant NIL deal leaked, $1.4 million with GT Sports Magazine, be the one to be the College Football 2023 cover athlete?
The now Texas Longhorn was the first player since Vince Young to earn a perfect 1.000 composite rating from 24/7Sports. He’s flashy not just with his hair but also his cannon of an arm and ability to make throws off platform. He’s got a stacked supporting cast to work with in 2022 with Xaiver Worthy and Bijan Robinson rounding out the offense. It could be a special 2022 season in Austin.
We can’t forget about the guy that will likely be competing with Ewers for the honor of being the number 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. Caleb Williams took college football by storm in 2021, usurping Spencer Rattler for the starting quarterback job at Oklahoma. With Lincoln Riley jumping ship to the PAC12 and USC, Williams spent some time weighing out his options (and financial opportunities) before following him to Southern California.
Much like Texas, USC’s defense is going to be in tough shape to stop anyone. Williams and Trojans for going to need to put up plenty of points, but they have the offensive talent to score with anyone and potentially make their first College Football Playoff appearance in 2023. With Williams having 2021 Biletnikoff Award winner, Jordan Addison to throw to, Baily Zappe’s 62 passing touchdowns record could be in their sights.
TreVeyon Henderson taking the lead back role at Ohio State as a freshman speaks volumes. He recorded 1560 yards along with 19 touchdowns in 13 games last season. If he could have been drafted after this past season there isn’t a doubt in my mind he’d be the first running back off the board and a first round pick. Ahead of the likes of Breece Hall, Kenneth Walker and Isaiah Spiller.
Giving the title of NCAA cover athlete to a running back is not as far fetched as you might think. Sure the 2010’s were a different era in terms of offensive philosophy but Mark Ingram was on the cover in NCAA Football 2012 and Darren McFadden in 2009.
How could I create this list without including the nephew of two of the most legendary quarterbacks in college football and the NFL? Arch is as polarizing of a college football prospect as they come, so much so that I’m including him without knowing what team he will be playing for. In July of 2023 he will be preparing for his true freshman season.
Georgia fans are ready for Arch Manning pic.twitter.com/GGdwJ0hFv2
— Matt DeBary (@MattDeBary) June 4, 2022
His current 24/7 composite score is a perfect 1.000 as well, the same as Ewers. He’s got all the physical tools to be an impact freshman, already standing at 6’4 and 215-pounds. In his freshman season in high school he threw for 34 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Maybe whatever school that ends up landing him may need the help of EA Sports to close the deal?
Let’s give some love to the tight ends of the world shall we. The soon to be Georgia sophomore is no joke, I’m not sure the Bulldogs would have won a National Championship without him. As a freshman he recorded 56 receptions, 882 yards and 14 touchdowns.
He’s a long shot in this star studded group but in Kirby Smart’s run heavy offense a 1,000 yard season would have to put him in this conversation. He is the most complete pass catching tight end in the nation and could be a top-10 pick in the NFL Draft like Kyle Pitts was a few years ago.