Michael Vick pulled out of a scheduled interview on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" without explanation Tuesday night. The Eagles quarterback said in a statement: "I admire and respect Oprah and hope to be able to participate in an interview in the future."

 

Jason Whitlock of FoxSports.com and Peter King of Sports Illustrated are engaged in a dispute centered around the Pro Football Hall of Fame selection process. Whitlock does not approve of the way candidates are selected — "It's a system and process that should shame legit journalists," he wrote. King, one of the power brokers, did not take well to the criticism and attempted to explain and defend himself. The issue of race was brought into the discussion.

 

There was some controversy last month when Reebok announced a shoe deal with ESPN reporter Erin Andrews, as some speculated that her reporting on players who are sponsored by Reebok could be compromised. Now, The New York Times reports that ESPN's College GameDay broadcasters Chris Fowler, Lee Corso and Kirk Herbstreit have had contracts with Nike.

 

According to an ESPN spokesman, Fowler said he plans to end his "minor association" with Nike "to avoid any potential perception issues."

 

The Islanders turned Friday's game against the Penguins into a fight-fest, targeting a couple of Pittsburgh players in retaliation for injuries they caused to a pair of Islanders. The end result was 10 ejections, 15 fighting majors, 20 misconducts and 346 penalty minutes. The NHL responded by handing out two suspensions and fining New York $100,000. That wasn't enough, as far as Pens owner Mario Lemieux is concerned.

 

Former ESPN contributing NFL writer Jeremy Green, son of former NFL coach Dennis Green, pleaded guilty to one count of possession of child pornography Thursday in New Britain, Conn. Green is expected to receive a 20-year sentence and serve five years in prison before being released on probation.

 

Last month, ESPN football analyst Tom Jackson was in the middle of a controversy for saying he picked against the Jets in an effort to motivate them to beat the Patriots. On Wednesday, the Pistons extended the Cavaliers' losing streak to 26 games, and afterward the Detroit players credited ESPN's Tim Legler for inspiring them. Legler predicted a Cavs victory.

 

"Tim Legler, we heard you," Pistons forward Tracy McGrady said. "You gave us some bulletin-board material. We used that."

 

Wake Forest baseball coach Tom Walter donated a kidney to one of his players, who is recovering after the Monday surgery. Freshman outfielder Kevin Jordan, a Yankees draft pick, suffers from ANCA vasculitis, a type of autoimmune swelling caused by autoantibodies. When none of Jordan's family members proved to be a match, Walter stepped up to help.

 

Christina Aguilera's Super Bowl national anthem performance continues to cause controversy — this time with bettors. There was a betting line (offshore only) of 1 minutes, 54 seconds on how long it would take the singer to complete the tune. One betting website timed it at 1:53.7, but there were two issues. First, she may have included an extra "oh" at the end, extending it past 1:54. Second, she messed up a line in the song, causing some to question whether it should count. At least one website indicated it would pay off both sides of the bet because of the questions.

The game was a thriller, but behind the scenes there were some issues at Sunday's Super Bowl. The biggest blunder was the failure of workers to complete 1,250 temporary seats at Cowboys Stadium that had been sold for $800 apiece. The NFL re-seated most of the affected individuals (taking seats away from Cowboys staff and families), offered three times the price as a refund, and put the remaining people in standing room areas where they had to watch a video screen.