Plugged In

Today is indeed a sad day for fans of 2K Sports’ “College Hoops” franchise. Take-Two Interactive, the parent company behind the 2K Sports label, announced Monday that it had broken off negotiations with the Collegiate Licensing Company, which represents more than 200 major universities, and cancelled future editions of its college basketball simulation. There will be no “College Hoops 2K9.” Take-Two released the following statement to Monday afternoon:

“2K Sports has decided not to continue negotiations with the CLC for the license for its top-rated College Hoops franchise, which would have been released next in November 2008. We are committed to providing fans with high-quality, critically-acclaimed sports games, but given our disciplined approach to the business, we do not believe the current discussions would result in an acceptable outcome.”

2K fanboys immediately pointed the finger at rival publisher EA Sports, which shut 2K out of the NFL gaming market by securing exclusive rights to the NFL license following the release of “NFL 2K5.” Let’s hope that scenario isn’t playing out again — exclusive licenses are nothing but bad news for sports gamers. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding the decision, there’s no denying the “College Hoops” franchise will be sorely missed.