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EA Sports College Football 25 got it right featuring multiple cover athletes including Donovan Edwards, Quinn Ewers and Travis Hunter

On3 imageby:Jesse Simonton05/14/24


EA Sports is under a lot of pressure not to screw this up. 

After a decade hiatus for one of the most popular video games ever, EA Sports College Football 25 is set for a triumphant return this summer. 

In every release since the game’s comeback was first announced, details have been strategically leaked and then combed through like your favorite true crime podcast. 

While there’s still plenty we don’t know about the game’s return, we have a pretty good idea who is going to be in EA Sports College Football 25 — all your favorite teams and many of your favorite players (like Travis Hunter, Quinn Ewers and Donovan Edwards). 

Probably not Arch Manning, though. 

We know the video game will incorporate college football’s new landscape of NIL, the transfer portal and the expanded College Football Playoff. We know who the announcers will be, including ESPN’s Chris Fowler and Kirk Herbstreit.

The game’s new graphics and early screen grabs look fantastic. The fight songs and nostalgia are all there. 

Everyone is keeping their finger’s crossed the game’s engine isn’t just Madden 2024 with some patches, but we’ll have to wait unit the official release date to find out. 

 But after a spring teaser trailer that got everyone jacked, we got the latest leak Friday — a sneak peak at the cover art of the deluxe edition of the game on the PlayStation Store. 

And EA Sports nailed it. 

The cover art, which has yet to be formally confirmed by EA Sports, features Michigan tailback Donovan Edwards center stage, one of the stars from the Wolverines’ reigning national title team. He’s flanked by Texas quarterback Quinn Ewers and Colorado two-way standout Travis Hunter. In the background, Georgia quarterback Carson Beck, Ohio State tailback Quinshon Judkins and Alabama quarterback Jalen Milroe linger. 

There are all sorts of other famous helmets featured prominently too, including Tennessee, Florida, Washington, Oregon and USC. It is funny that Notre Dame is the only other team with a player with an obvious number seen — yet no name listed. 

Still, EA Sports struck the right balance in picking its cover art stars for the game’s return. And this is just for the Deluxe Edition. Who knows what’s in store for the Standard Edition cover or the Collector’s Edition? Other players — like Shedeur Sanders or Jaxson Dart could be involved as well.

2024 is set to be a wildly unique season, so why not give shine to as many programs and players as possible?

Several months ago, I advocated for EA Sports to involve multiple active players for their cover. There is no Trevor Lawrence or Caleb Williams in college football this season, so spread the wealth. 

Have regional covers. Or conference covers. Or what they landed on. 

The idea what Nick Saban or Deion Sanders should grace the cover of the game’s return was fun in theory, but that was never going to happen since the entire reason for the game’s return is that players could finally profit off of the name, image and likeness.

In the words of EA Sports, they’re finally “in the game.”

Players who opted into the game will receive $600, plus a free copy of the game for the use of their name, image and likeness. Athletes who remain in the game for multiple years will be paid annually, and some, likely the aforementioned cover athletes and other notables, landed more lucrative branding deals tied to the game’s release. 

On the surface, Edwards may seem like a curious choice. He’s not a household name, and his teammates defensive tackles Mason Graham and Kenneth Grant, and corner Will Johnson are better players. But Edwards was one of the stars of Michigan’s title win over Washington (two touchdowns and 104 yards on just six carries) and the Maize & Blue have a very famous history of former Wolverines serving as the cover athlete for the game, including Denard Robinson on NCAA Football 14 (the last cover athlete before the game was put on ice). 

The others include Charles Woodson in NCAA Football 99 and Desmond Howard in NCAA Football 06

So EA Sports checked a box with a Michigan player, who also is now one of the faces of the reigning national champs. 

Then the rest of the cover-athletes perfectly fell in place. A Texas quarterback and former 5-star prospect. The quarterback from the new Goliath in the sport, and the quarterback from one of the most popular program’s in college football. One of the most notable 2024 transfers (also now at a blueblood) and Travis Hunter, perhaps maybe the most famous player in the sport right now. 

In all, chef’s kiss. No notes. 

We’ll know more in the days (liberally, more news is set to come Thursday) and weeks to come about what EA Sports did and didn’t get right with the new game, but nailing the cover art was an important reintroduction.