Minimum bid for home is $3.2M

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. -- Imprisoned NFL star Michael Vick's suburban Atlanta home will be offered for sale to the highest bidder on March 10.

The judge presiding over Vick's Chapter 11 bankruptcy case issued an order scheduling the auction Tuesday. The order sets an opening bid of $3.2 million for the eight-bedroom home in a gated community in Duluth, Ga.

The auction will be held in either Atlanta or Gwinnett County, upon agreement by Vick and the committee representing his creditors.

Vick is serving a 23-month prison sentence at the federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kan., for his role in a dogfighting conspiracy. His lawyers have said he could be transferred soon to a halfway house in Newport News, his hometown. Vick is scheduled to be released from federal custody July 20.

The suspended Atlanta Falcons quarterback has said in court papers that he expects to resume his NFL career after his release. However, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has not said whether he will lift Vick's suspension, and the Falcons said last week that they will try to trade their contractual rights to Vick to another team.

Vick was once the league's highest-paid player before his indictment and guilty plea left both his finances and his reputation in tatters. He filed for bankruptcy protection in July, claiming assets of $16 million and liabilities of $20.4 million.

Vick previously listed the Duluth home for $4.5 million, and the price was later reduced to $4.1 million. Michael Blumenthal, one of Vick's attorneys, told U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Frank Santoro last month that the property had been shown to about 30 potential buyers and that a deal to sell the home for $3.15 million collapsed at the last minute.

Funari Realty, the company marketing the property, described it in an Internet listing as a "stunning custom home with priceless lake views." It features a two-story foyer with a double curved staircase. Other amenities include an in-home theater, a workout room with sauna, an elevator, a full bar, two outdoor fireplaces and a four-car garage.

Vick paid $3.7 million for the home in 2005, according to Gwinnett County property records, and court papers show he still owes about $2.8 million on the mortgage.