Video gamers crave authenticity, and for the most part NCAA Football 09 delivers. From the famed hedges of Georgia's Sanford Stadium to...
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Video gamers crave authenticity, and for the most part NCAA Football 09 delivers. From the famed hedges of Georgia’s Sanford Stadium to the iconic maize markings on Michigan’s helmets, the game is as real as fake can get.
But there is an exception.
Game maker EA Sports isn’t allowed to use players’ real names because the NCAA prohibits the sale of items that include a student-athlete’s name, picture or likeness. So even though virtual Florida is led by a spitting image of Tim Tebow — down to the Heisman Trophy winner’s cannon arm and brute running style — he is known in the video game simply as “QB 15.”
Enter Brian Kaldenberg, 25, president of Gamerosters.com.
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Tucked away in a disheveled office not far from Iowa’s Kinnick Stadium, Gamerosters.com is a leading provider of college video-game rosters. The company, launched by Kaldenberg from his dorm room at Iowa State in 2004, is expected to bring in about $200,000 in revenue this year — against $70,000 in expenses — by putting names to virtual faces.
Customers who otherwise would have to spend untold hours typing in more than 10,000 names can buy a memory card from Gamerosters, plug it into their console and presto: every Football Bowl Subdivision roster comes to life. All for a fee of anywhere from $11.95 to $44.95.
“We really capitalize off of convenience,” Kaldenberg said.
Gamerosters has grown from roughly 700 customers buying rosters for NCAA Football by EA Sports to about 5,500 customers and plans to provide rosters for three video games — NCAA Football 09, College Hoops 2K9 and March Madness 09.
Oregon QB is injured
EUGENE, Ore. — Quarterback Nate Costa was expected to be the new face of the No. 21 Oregon Ducks, but a recent injury to his surgically repaired left knee has raised questions.
Costa, the presumptive starter, got hurt during a closed practice Wednesday night when he tried to change directions during a scramble. He finished the final 20 minutes of practice and told coaches he felt discomfort in the knee.
Costa underwent testing Thursday and will wait to get a diagnosis after the team’s orthopedic surgeon returns to Eugene on Sunday. There might not be a report until Monday. If Costa is out, sophomore Justin Roper is likely to start in next Saturday’s opener against Washington.
• Sophomore tight end Mike Ragone, who was expected to compete for the starting position at Notre Dame, will miss the season after undergoing surgery for a torn ligament in his left knee. Possible starters at tight end include junior Will Yeatman and freshman Kyle Rudolph.
• Clemson safety DeAndre McDaniel will be accepted into a program for first-time offenders to resolve charges of aggravated assault and battery.