Citing unexplained personal reasons, Vazquez, the 27-year-old New York heartthrob picked as a favorite to win this season, unexpectedly dropped out of the competition over the weekend, just days after making the show's final 12. Nikko Smith will replace him.
But Vazquez's decision is still getting a lot of attention – not only from his own mother, Ada, who told a FOX TV news reporter, "I do not know what's happening. I feel horrible about it" – to puzzled fans who have posted their opinions on the official Idol Web site as to why Vazquez might have called it a day.
The only problem: The crooner himself shoots down each and every theory.
As for the notion that he did not wish to be tied to an Idol contract: "In all honesty, I'm not able to talk about contracts," he says. "It's nothing with American Idol in particular, it's just things I really need to take care of in my life."
Perhaps, then, he has something in his past to hide? "Crazy," is how he terms that theory, adding too: "Everything is fine with my health."
Okay, then. Since he was a backup singer on Michael Jackson's "Whatever Happens" for the 2001 Invincible album, maybe Vazquez needed to be available to appear as a witness in Jacko's trial?
"No, I'm not," says Vazquez. "It was an amazing experience to work with Michael Jackson, who is a legend. It's unfortunate what's happening with that."
So, for whatever reasons, Vazquez stands by his decision. "I don't think it's by any means an end to my career," he says. "It's just things you need to take care of in life ... I will always be singing. This won't be the last you hear of Mario Vazquez."