By Zac Ellis
A former EA Sports producer says the company’s college sports video games were designed to replicate existing athletes without using their names, according to testimony obtained by AL.com.
Jeremy Strauser, an employee of EA Sports from 1995-2011, testified that video game players were created to correlate with existing players numbers and biographical information. Strauser’s testimony took place last December but was filed by EA Sports last week.
EA Sports, the NCAA and the College Licensing Company are the defendants in a high-profile case brought forth by former student-athletes and headed by former UCLA basketball player Ed O’Bannon. The suit alleges the three defendants violated antitrust laws surrounding student-athletes’ names, likenesses and images in the companies’ products.
According to the testimony, EA Sports was aware of the similarities between athletes and their video game counterparts:
“We generally tried to make the players perform as their real life counterparts, short of their name and likeness,” Strauser testified.