The NFL video game by EA Sports had entertained millions over the years. Not many know that this extremely popular franchise was almost not known simply as Madden. Named after a well-known coach and sports commentator, the game has seen many iterations since its initial release in 1988, and has entertained generations of young sports fans.
Who Was the Game-Maker’s First Choice
ESPN published a story back in 2016 in which it revealed that John Madden wasn’t the first choice for the NFL game. The game-maker and founder of Electronic Arts, Trip Hawkings, had the famous quarterback, Joe Montana, lined up as his first choice. His second choice was Cal Bears coach and former Vikings and Patriots quarterback, Joe Kapp. However, Montana was already involved in a conflicting endorsement deal with Atari, and Kap was requesting royalties. Because of Hawkin’s credentials that impressed John, he agreed to sign on.
Madden and His Career
John Madden was initially a player, but he suffered a knee injury back in 1958 in his rookie season, which cut his career short. He continued down the sports path by becoming the head coach of the Raiders and winning a Super Bowl. John then became a TV analyst for NFL games – a job at which he excelled to the point where he was added to the Pro Football Hall of Fame – Class of 2006. He died at the age of 85, but his legacy continues through his constant presence in the EA Sports NFL game that constantly connects him with new generations.
Madden’s Feelings About the Game Involvement
Madden’s involvement with the game certainly proved to be a clever decision, as it ended up becoming a household name and generating over $4 billion in revenue. Initially, Hawkins told John that he could have as much stock as he wanted if he paid an initial price of $7.50 per share. He opted out of investing in stock which grew from 7 to $70 in just ten years. A decision Madden always regretted. However, he was the one pushing to make the game as authentic as possible and his contributions were immeasurable.
The NCAA Will Propose Significant Changes to College Athletics
The NCAA has recently announced that it will convene in November and make an effort to dramatically change the future of college athletics. During the constitutional convention, a number of major changes will be proposed, including the approval of athletes to be able to monetize their image, name, and likeness.
The NCAA Will Consider the Proposal to Increase the College Football Playoff to 12 Teams
In addition to increasing the playoffs for college football, the NCAA will probably move Oklahoma and Texas to the Southeastern Conference. The redrafting convention will be led by a Constitution Review Committee made up of 22 people. These will include presidents, athletics directors, commissioners, and students from Divisions I, II, and III. The committee will consider proposals for a new system of rules enforcement and governance that focuses on the role of the NCAA’s national oversight.
More Action On the Propositions Is Expected at the January NCAA Convention
NCAA President Mark Emmert has stated that the legal, economic, and political environments are all shifting, and that has created an opportunity for change. According to him, that is a powerful opportunity that must not be wasted. Emmert pointed out that the outcome of the convention could create different rules for the big and small schools within Division I. He believes that the current arrangement may not be the most useful, and changes to the governing structure might be necessary.
Two weeks ago, Emmert foreshadowed the latest NCAA announcement when he proposed a smaller decision-making governance role for the organization on a large swath of issues that usually get delegated to schools and conferences. He was bold enough to propose reimagining the structure to manage certain sports separately.
It seems members of the constitutional committee will be chosen in August and start working on various issues immediately. The virtual convention in November will provide feedback on the committee proposals, and everything will then be submitted to the NCAA Board of Governors by December. Those will then be voted on at the January convention.