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Tennessee Player Ratings - EA Sports NCAA Football 10

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WIth just six weeks remaining until the release of EA Sports' NCAA Football 10 across multiple video game platforms, new information continues to surface daily about the game. One of the new features this year is Team Builder, which is by far the most in-depth Create A Team feature that EA Sports has ever used in one of their games. This feature is available online right now, in advance of the game's July 14 release date, so that players can have their created teams ready to upload as soon as the game is released.

Team Builder is a great way for fans to include FCS teams in the game (EA's website is kind enough to offer all the FCS logos for uploading). You can also create your high school or really anything else you can imagine - the program is incredibly in depth and allows for logo, stadium and field, uniform, mascot, and roster creations.

The program also provides templates for the existing 120 FBS teams, so for example if you were me and wanted to create Alcoa High School but have them play in Neyland Stadium, you can do that. However, in playing with this feature today I also discovered that Team Builder also provides roster templates for all 120 existing FBS teams - which means you can also just use the feature to see the player ratings for all the real teams in the game.

Whether you're a fan or player of EA's NCAA Football series or not, these ratings are always an interesting indicator of how the Vols' talent is perceived by an objective group interested in making a realistic football game. I added the poll out of curiosity - I love this game and eagerly await its release each year, but I have no idea how much of the rest of our community plays it. This year, the player ratings also appear to be a testament to Tennessee's name recognition power giving a boost in some needed spots for some players.

The Team Builder feature is great fun and available for free at the link above...but was also helpful in providing the player ratings for all 120 teams. So the site is there for you to do your own research for any of the 120 teams...but I've listed some of the player ratings for the 2009 Vols on the game after the jump. And let's just say that if EA Sports is right, things may not be as bad as they seem...

As Sam Keller will tell you, it's illegal to put the names of collegiate players in a video game - for years the game comes with players generically listed as "QB #8", and you've had to go in and manually change it to "Jonathan Crompton". As such, the players are generically listed at the website, and when it comes to the freshmen, I've lined up the provided height/weight figures with what's listed on UT's roster, which should line up pretty well.

Take a look at some of the player ratings for the Vols this year:

QB Jonathan Crompton - 87

QB Nick Stephens - 84

RB Montario Hardesty - 89

RB Tauren Poole - 84

RB Bryce Brown - 84

RB David Oku - 83

FB Kevin Cooper - 82

WR Gerald Jones - 90

WR Quintin Hancock - 88

WR Brandon Warren - 87

WR Denarius Moore - 86

WR Austin Rogers - 85

WR Nu'Keese Richardson - 81

TE Luke Stocker - 86

LT Chris Scott - 89

LG Vladimir Richard - 86

C Josh McNeil - 96

RG Jacques McClendon - 90

RT William Brimfield - 81

DE Chris Walker - 89

DE Ben Martin - 89

DT Dan Williams - 90

DT Montori Hughes - 79

OLB Rico McCoy - 91

OLB Savior Frazier - 86

OLB Jerod Askew - 73

MLB Nick Reveiz - 82

DB Eric Berry - 97

DB Dennis Rogan - 88

DB Marsalous Johnson - 85

DB Brent Vinson - 82

DB Prentiss Wagner - 82

DB Janzen Jackson - 82

DB Eric Gordon - 80

DB Darren Myles - 78

K Daniel Lincoln - 86

P Chad Cunningham - 88

A couple things to note...Team Builder just lists the overall rating, so I can't tell you Nu'Keese's speed rating or Crompton's awareness. I'm not sure if all the teams in the game are getting this sort of ratings bump...but in years past, EA had a tendency to give an extra nudge to the Florida States and Miamis of the world, knowing that lots of people are going to play with those teams. This year, it would appear that the Vols are equal beneficiaries...if you've played these games before, you know that there's no way in the free world that Crompton should be an 87 overall quarterback. But there it is.

It is nice to know that if you plan on taking the Vols in this game, it appears you can at least give some of the best teams on the game a run for their money, because there's enough talent there in the numbers. Eric Berry is the highest rated non-punter Vol (Dustin Colquitt was a 99 one year) since John Henderson, if memory serves. And that makes sense.

You can do your own further research at the team builder site. Last season, EA unveiled their overall team ratings before the game was released, which will be something else to keep an eye on. I'm also eagerly anticipating The Pride of the Southland's appearance as EA's Band of the Day on their website.

The game hits stores on Tuesday, July 14.