EA CEO Better Than Michael Jordan?

EA CEO John Riccitiello was listed in Sports Illustrated’s “50 Most Powerful People In Sports.” After leading the development of sports franchises such as: FIFA, Madden, NHL, and Tiger Woods, he would seem like an obvious choice. Not only was he on a list about people in sports when he is technically not in the same industry, but it is even more impressive when you find out who he is in front of.

“His products have shaped Generation Y’s perception of sports as much as anyone’s,”Sports Illustrated wrote, before cautioning that difficult times may be ahead. “But is exhaustion setting in after 25 years of incrementally improved Madden games?” Despite the words of warning, Riccitiello was ranked 39th out of 50. He beat some of what I thought to be the most powerful people in sports such as: Barack Obama (44), UFC President Dana White (45), Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban (48), and even Bobcats owner Michael Jordan (50).

To see someone from our industry make it on a list of another industry is very impressive. Although it is easy to see how they coincide, it is great that the people over at Sports Illustrated are recognizing how popular and great these games really are. Also, it shows that they are paying at least some attention to the games because they mention that there may be exhaustion setting in after so many years. Even with this word of warning he is still more powerful than the President when it comes to sports. On a side note, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell was ranked number 1. On another side note, why is Obama on this list at all? I wasn’t aware he controlled any aspects of sports in this country.

In regards to what EA can do to make their sports games better, there really isn’t any concrete advice. I think they have to keep making small improvements and reiterating what they do best. As consoles get more and more powerful, I’m sure there will be more things for them to consider, but for now, there is no drastic change that could really improve the games. Improving things such as graphics and physics relies on the technology of the consoles in addition to what they have. Regardless of what they do or don’t do, after 25 years their slogan still remains true. EA Sports, it’s in the game.


SIs list can be viewed in full here