Where Michael Vick is or isn’t has become something of a sport this offseason.
The latest incident involved the Southeastern Virginia Arts Association Black Tie gala on Saturday night in Norfolk, Va. Vick was to be honored as a “hero” by the group and the invitation seems to indicate that organizers expected Vick to attend. According to WAVY-TV, several guests who had paid for the $100 tickets walked out when told Vick was not there.
However, Vick spokesman Chris Shigas said organizers were told months ago that Vick would not attend.
“He was grateful that they did honor him with an award, but he declined the invitations to actually attend the event in person,” Shigas told the Daily News. “That was clear to the organizers.”
Shigas said Vick is getting “20 to 30 event requests per week, not even including the media. These are all community events.”
“He’s getting a huge volume of requests, but at the same time Mike is one of the most active players in the NFL as far as doing community events,” Shigas said.
This event comes on the heels of several other highly publicized events and questions about Vick’s participation. In virtually every case, none of these seem to be Vick's fault.
• Vick was advertised as attending a Super Bowl party that reportedly was to be patrolled by off-duty SWAT team members for security. The league and an Eagles source said that Vick’s social calendar in Dallas was reviewed several times by the NFL, including three conversations in 2 weeks between Goodell and Vick. The quarterback spoke at a Boys and Girls Club in Frisco, Texas, and then was supposed to make an appearance for a check presentation but was never supposed to stay for the party, an organizer said. The owner of the club had said he was expecting Vick to attend.
• Vick agreed to an interview with Oprah Winfrey and then canceled a few days later. Vick said “the timing was not right,” adding there were some subjects he did not want to discuss.
• Vick was scheduled to attend a “What It Takes” event for 200 high school students at the Franklin Institute. According to Shigas, the organization was told the week before that Vick was not going to be able to make it because of a conflict that required him to head to Virginia to be with his son. Vick previously had worked with the group and the group’s leader said he knew in advance that Vick would not attend, although some still characterized it as a Vick no-show.
• He accepted a player of the year award from the Maxwell Club and took part in a press conference. However, the Maxwell Club had scheduled Vick for an appearance on ESPN’s “First Take” without confirming it with Vick or the Eagles. The club later apologized.
“The reality is there is a process for those requests, whether through the Philadelphia Eagles, my own agency or Mike confirms personally,” Shigas said. “There are a lot of events around Mike where sometimes people are too eager to offer him up for opportunities because they know they get a lot of exposure when they do.”
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