No sports on TV? Pop one in the Playstation

The Madden NFL series is one of many sports video games sports fans can play during the sports lull surrounding the MLB All-Star break. (Courtesy Photo | EASports)

Every year at this time the sports world takes a break.

The days surrounding the MLB All-Star Game are notable only in their extreme dearth of sporting events.

So sometimes you have to make your own sports.

Luckily, Tuesday kicked off the start of a new season for sports video games with the release of NCAA Football ‘13.

EA Sports’ college football offering is the first in the company’s fall lineup that includes the popular Madden and FIFA series as well as yearly basketball and hockey games.

What better way to spend an evening without sports than by playing sports with a controller? (OK, admittedly actually playing sports would be preferable, but not everyone can find five others for a pick-up game.)

Sports video games provide that perfect outlet for sports fans to get their fix on the slowest sports days of the year.

NCAA ‘13’s early release puts it ahead of all the fall competitors and makes it a perfect way to spend those boring sports months when the baseball season drags on and the football season seems like it will never arrive.

Each year it seems NCAA ups the realism, so sadly, the days of 20-step drops and sprinting 40 yards with Reggie McNeal before CBs turn around out of their zone coverage are long gone. The game is still fun though, and this year’s edition allows you to put certain Heisman Trophy winners (notably Barry Sanders and RGIII) on any current team and play through a season.

For many, though, NCAA Football is merely a holdover until the Aug. 28 release of Madden ‘13, the game that spawned an ESPN television series.

I’ve stated before in the newspaper that I’m a FIFAphile, so I’ll be impatiently awaiting the late September release.

As popular as Madden is, EA’s soccer series sells twice as many copies as its NFL counterpart.

Of course, with no Rangers to watch, I suppose you could spend some time with your family, but where’s the competition in that?

How do you spend the MLB All-Star break’s absence of sports? Do you play video games or get out and play sports for real? What’s the best sports video game? Sends responses to sports@tylerpaper.com; on Twitter at @TYoestingETFS or @ETFinalScore; or on Facebook at facebook.com/ETFinalScore.

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