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EA $40M Settlement

June 1, 2014 by  

EA $40M Settlement, College football and basketball players have finalized a $40 million settlement with a video game manufacturer and the NCAA’s licensing arm for improperly using the likenesses of athletes, leaving the NCAA alone to defend itself in the upcoming Ed O’Bannon antitrust trial.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs filed the settlement agreement with a federal court in Oakland, California, on Friday night in an action that could deliver up to $4,000 to as many as 100,000 current and former athletes who appeared in EA Sports basketball and football video games since 2003.


I’m thrilled that for the first time in the history of college sports, athletes will get compensated for their performance. It’s pretty groundbreaking.

” — Steve Berman, co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs

“I’m thrilled that for the first time in the history of college sports, athletes will get compensated for their performance,” said Steve Berman, co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs. “It’s pretty groundbreaking.”

EA and the Collegiate Licensing Corporation had come to an agreement in principle with the plaintiffs in September 2013, but the settlement was held up by a variety of issues. The NCAA objected to the departure of their co-defendants, and plaintiffs’ lawyers representing three different classes of players haggled over the financial cuts that would go to each.

In the end, according to the agreement, 77 percent of the funds that are due to players (after lawyer fees) will go to the class of players represented by Berman, who sued the NCAA on behalf of former Arizona State quarterback Sam Keller. Just over 12 percent will go to players in the class represented by O’Bannon, the former UCLA basketball star. The final 10 percent will go to the class represented by former Rutgers football player Ryan Hart and former West Virginia football player Shawne Alston.

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