It has been six years for the reason that final NCAA Football online game and there’s a chance it’d return sooner or later if we’re fortunate. In the meantime, I used to be excited to study that Madden NFL 20‘s Face of the Franchise mode would feature the College Football Playoff and real college teams. After playing the mode, however, I’m left scratching my head.
Electronic Arts made the NCAA Football video games, but it surely appears as if the writers of Madden NFL 20 forgot what school soccer is definitely like after that collection ceased to exist. Face of the Franchise has one of many hokiest and factually inaccurate storylines I’ve performed in a very long time.
If you’re in any respect fearful about spoilers, you need to cease studying now.
This simply doesn’t occur
The story goes that you’re a 5-star quarterback recruit. You stroll into a rest room, stare into the mirror, and create your character. You’re nervous since you’re about to make the most important determination of your life. Your participant then walks out to their press convention and ten hats are sitting on the pristine desk. An viewers awaits your determination.
It’s a restricted choice, however the applications included are heavy hitters. There’s additionally Texas Tech however that’s clearly solely included as a result of Patrick Mahomes II is the quilt athlete of NFL 20. I selected USC, primarily as a result of I detest a lot of the ten groups accessible in Face of the Franchise. Regardless, this “Hat Picking Ceremony” is an correct depiction of National Signing Day. So far, so good.
But issues rapidly flip in a route that doesn’t make any sense. After you arrive on campus, you study that the primary recruit within the nation, Marcus Washington, has de-committed from his earlier faculty and determined to enroll at your chosen program. Your head coach tells you the grim information in his workplace as a result of he needed you to be the primary to know. Supposedly, the job was promised to you, the 5-star recruit who might’ve performed anyplace he needed. Yet now the next rated recruit, additionally a 5-star QB, has jumped forward of you.
Just to place the star ranking in perspective right here: 247 Sports, one of many leaders in recruiting evaluation, usually solely bestows a 5-star ranking to 2, possibly three quarterbacks per 12 months. It solely gave a 5-star ranking to at least one QB in 2019. In basic, 5-star rankings are extremely selective. So the possibilities of two 5-star QB recruits selecting the identical faculty in the identical 12 months? Let’s simply say it doesn’t occur.
From implausible to inconceivable
On prime of that, the logistics right here don’t actually add up in trendy school soccer. The primary recruit within the nation would’ve formally dedicated far earlier than you’d have arrived on campus. That means he would’ve needed to switch and subsequently sit out one 12 months. You might imagine I’m studying into it an excessive amount of right here, however the premise is nuts.
On prime of that, if the top coach had promised a QB recruit the beginning job, that might make an important case for a switch waiver, thus letting stated recruit switch with out having to sit down out. Instead, your character decides to stay round and battle for the beginning job. A noble however gutsy determination.
After you exit the workplace, 4 years move. Here’s the place issues go from unbelievable to downright unbelievable. Apparently, the previous primary recruit and four-year starter is injured someday between your crew’s final recreation and the College Football Playoff. Now, it’s as much as you to steer your crew to a National Championship berth and victory.
Not solely did you stick with a training employees that apparently lied to you for 4 years, however in these 4 seasons, you by no means began a recreation. Not solely that however you by no means even noticed the sphere. That’s proper. The backup QB for a significant program by no means took a snap.
At face worth, possibly that doesn’t sound so ridiculous, however school soccer isn’t the NFL. Backups and even third-string QBs frequently come into video games within the second half, particularly once you play for a nationwide powerhouse that usually steamrolls over a minimum of a number of opponents every year.
Of the ten school groups which can be included in Face of the Franchise, precisely zero of them used just one QB throughout the 2018 school soccer season. I’d be shocked if any faculty throughout the nation solely used one QB all through a full season. And Face of the Franchise tries to promote you on 4 seasons? Then, proper earlier than the CFP, the sturdiest school QB in historical past will get injured. That’s a critically unhealthy break — no pun supposed.
Perhaps even crazier than that ridiculous stat is that you must consider that you simply, a 5-star recruit with NFL aspirations, sat on the bench as a substitute of transferring. What’s even funnier is that whereas competing within the playoffs, the announcers talk about the way you already determined that you simply wouldn’t pursue a graduate switch for another 12 months of eligibility. What would have occurred if you happen to hadn’t performed in any respect in school? Kiss the NFL Draft goodbye. Oh nicely, I assume goals don’t matter.
The precise gameplay in Face of the Franchise is okay. It appears like common Madden, besides you solely management your play. While some adjustments are made to replicate NCAA guidelines, others simply go along with the NFL rulebook, equivalent to move interference spot penalties somewhat than the 15-yard penalty seen in school soccer.
After I received the National Championship, I went to the Combine to throw alongside different NFL hopefuls. As I’m on the sideline ready for my flip, a person approaches me and asks about my illustration. I apparently don’t have an agent but, after which he virtually tells me that he’s my agent now. I’m additionally his solely shopper. How on the earth did he get on the sphere on the NFL Combine? We’ll by no means actually know.
Your efficiency within the CFP and on the Combine determines your draft inventory. I received the championship after which accomplished about 70% of my passes on the Combine. From a run-down motel room, my faux agent and I acquired a name from Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians to let me know the Bucs had been taking me within the fourth spherical. This is the top of my school QB (non)taking part in days.
Face of the Franchise appears like a missed alternative. It’s a narrative that disregards logic in favor of sensationalism, and it isn’t even good at doing that. EA might have made your participant a walk-on or a third-string QB just like the Buckeyes’ Cardale Jones (who led his crew to a championship) to create a much more emotionally impactful and coherent premise, however what’s right here is solely nonsensical. At the very least, I’m now the beginning QB for the Bucs so, happily, in any case that bench warming, it labored out in the long run.

Shop Amazon