Anyone's who's had the misfortune of stumbling onto my blog during the summer in year's past knows I usually throw in a post here or there about EA's NCAA Football series in relation to Cal.
The big one was my discussion of whether there was such a thing as an NCAA Football Cover Curse similar to Madden.
Though over the years, my posts on the game series have gotten shorter and have emphasized more of EA's lazy approach to covering teams not named Florida or Notre Dame with the increasing number of inaccuracies in the game.
There were small things here and there, like portraying former Cal LB Mike Mohammed as being black.
Or having former Cal RB Tracy Slocum as the starting running back over Jahvid Best AND Shane Vereen in the 2010 version.
It was capped off with last year's version featuring QB Kevin Riley who had GRADUATED THE YEAR PRIOR.
Look, I get it. The EA team has 120 programs to cover and chances are that they're not going to get everything correct. But when your franchise has stagnated to a point that you're really not doing anything new, what else is keeping your development team busy for a full year?
Here's a look at some of EA's coverage of the Bears in this year's game.
First off, for the record, I didn't buy this game. I'm not about to put down $65 for a game which features the worst rated version of the Bears I've seen in the last 10 years.
If you're bored, you can watch the following video which features a game between the Golden Bears and the Baylor Bears in Memorial Stadium to get a sense of the action.
First off, the Bears are rated as 85 overall, with an 89 offense rating, and a staggeringly low defense rating of 76. (Source: CornNation) Apparently, our defense is worse than Duke's, Louisiana Tech's and Wyoming's. I'm not about to be super nitpicky here but I'm pretty sure our defense has led the conference two of the past three years. Though I will say that I'm surprised our offense was rated so high.
Here are some player ratings with the top player obviously being Keenan Allen. Still for someone who could be a Bitletnikoff Winner by the end of the year, this is still pretty low.
It's also worth noting that the Bears feature just two players who are rated above 90, though that's some what fair.
I will say that visually, the teams looks to have kicked it up a notch. The game looks beautiful, and though Memorial Stadium hasn't been updated just yet, they've continued to add detail to the Berkeley Hills each year. Very nice indeed.
Some random observations.
-Josh Hill and Avery Sebastian both have full sets of Predator dreadlocks.
-The starting defensive lineup seems to be about where most would expect, with the only mild surprises being Robert Mullins as one of your starting inside linebackers.
-Zach Maynard is apparently right handed now.
-Jackson Bouza is your other starting WR opposite Keenan Allen. This is understandable if you based it off the spring rosters, but they had to think one of the incoming wide receivers might make a push, no?
-Fortunately, EA does not offer a Shield of Death (SOD) punting formation. Hurray!
At the end of the day, I'm just being snarky in posting my minor squabbles. The 76 defense rating is the only major gripe I have in terms of the game's relation to Cal.
Oh and the fact that the game has remained a stagnant money sucking mess for the past several years. Having former Heisman winners play on current teams? Le Sigh.