'American Idol' finalist Michael Sarver not surprised about his ouster
By John Bracchitta, 03/27/2009
Michael Sarver had his suspicions that he may be the next finalist sent home following the lukewarm reception to his performance on American Idol's Wednesday night performance show. However the 27-year-old from Jasper, TX said he no longer had any questions about his fate once he was left standing alone on stage with Matt Giraud during Thursday's live results show.
"Standing there actually with him [and knowing one of us was the lowest vote-getter] actually made me more confident that I was going home, because really, he shined the night before and there was just no way, in my mind, that after something like that they would send the fella home," Sarver told reporters of Giraud -- whom he roomed with during part of the competition -- during a media conference call the day after his elimination.
"[Giraud] was incredible and it was an incredible opportunity to work with him," he added.
Sarver said although he felt his Thursday night performance of The Temptations' "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" was better than the version he had delivered while he was still recovering from an illness on Wednesday night's show -- "[it was] stronger because I was stronger" he explained -- he hadn't expected judges Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi to use "The Judges' Save" on him despite their discussion following his performance.
"I really appreciate the fact that they considered it based on my performance the second night and how they complimented that," Sarver told reporters.
"It meant a lot to me to, in a sense, redeem myself from suffering through a hard night [on Wednesday]. They did consider it, but I felt like it wasn't gonna happen, mostly based on Simon's previous comment from the night before about not really feeling like I could win the show."
As for Cowell's comment from Tuesday's show, in which he told Sarver that he was "taking part in this competition" but " [had] no chance of winning it," Sarver noted that even being discussed at all by the judges was a compliment in itself, but added that his comments may have been a bit of a stretch.
"[Cowell's comments] didn't necessarily tick me off, nor did it insult me, but it kinda made me giggle because he knows better than that. We didn't get there by mistake, we're all very talented. I believe in my talent and I believe in myself and what I have to offer to the music world," Sarver told reporters. "I definitely would have not been surprised if I had gone back to the mansion with the guys that night and been on next week."
"I'm very proud of what I brought to that table. What Simon has to say is quite important on that show, we all know that, and it has a lot of influence, and unfortunately it influenced in a negative directions with me," he added.
Although he now has a couple of months free until Idol's summer concert tour begins, Sarver -- who earned his tour spot by making it to the eighth season's Top 10 finals -- says he won't be returning to his oil roughneck job in the interim.
"Well, number one I will not be going back to the oil rig," Sarver told reporters. "I don't think it'd be a great idea to get out there and take a chance on hurting myself and not being available for the tour."
Instead, Sarver said he was going to make good on his Thursday night "I'm coming home, baby" departure comment and return home to focus on his family, whom he called the "number one priority" in his life.
"I'm going home and I'm gonna take some time off to spend with my family," Sarver said. "I believe they deserve my undivided attention for a little while and that's exactly what they're gonna get."