Hero Pilot Cheats on Katie Couric

After promising himself to CBS, pilot Chesley Sullenberger gave an interview to ESPN. Katie Couric should have known. "Sully" may be dreamy, and is definitely a hero, but he's also a media heartbreaker.

Matt Lauer could have told her that.

After all, Couric's former Today show colleague had a promise from Sullenberger and his people that the pilot of Flight 1549 would appear first on Today. After the Today appearance was delayed, Couric swooped in and Stole Sully for CBS' 60 Minutes.

NBC called "foul:"

"Unfortunately, people close to [the pilot] have not acted nearly as admirably [as he] over the past few days. They gave us their word, and then broke their commitment."

Now Sullenberger is running around on Couric, whose 60 Minutes had promised "the first interviews" with him and the crew. He ran into an ESPN reporter at a party for the Super Bowl, which he attended as an invited guest.Sully talked about crying with his wife, and what it was like in the cockpit:

"It was very quiet as we worked, my co-pilot and I. We were a team... But to have zero thrust coming out of those engines was shocking - the silence."

...Asked how he felt inside as his Airbus glided towards the water, the dashing silver-haired Californian said, "Calm on the outside, turmoil inside."

It's sad that a basically fine and decent human being like Sullenberger has to navigate the fierce pressures and guilt wielded by competitive TV news bookers. Outside of a small circle of industry people, no one is going to care that he effectively bumbled through the process of giving interviews to the press. People just want to hear what he has to say.