Sorry, my vote is"tug on the Award voters" heart strings. A fake girlfriend is one thing. A heart tugging story was a 'see how good I played in spite of the sadness, vote for me'.
The problem with the hoax theory is that there are enough statements that indicate Manti and his family lied in some fashion along the way. Now, even if you accept he was bamboozled at first, someone lied in October when the story gained traction and the South Bend Tribune article came out. Perhaps it was that Manti didn't want to admit that he had never met the girl, so they made up the story about meeting at Stanford, but that is still a lie. Or perhaps it was a lie all along, which I think this suggests is the case. On July 21, Manti sent the following tweet to "Lennay" about her fried chicken dinner:
Now this is supposedly the love of his life, but he is calling her "punk"? And I believe this is when she is supposed to be in the hospital with leukemia, since she was in the hospital for four months before dying. That sounds a lot more like something he would send to a guy.MTeo_5Manti Te'o 21 Jul
@LennayKay thank u for sending me pictures of your dinner punk. Not right!!! #notcool pic.twitter.com/yY7mAA35
Leaping into the realm of complete speculation, I wouldn't be surprised if Manti is gay and concocted the girlfriend story as a cover. So he had his buddy in California send some fake tweets and make a few calls so it seemed legit, and when the team played at Stanford, he would ask the players there if they knew her. Then word got to his parents and he gave them a song-and-dance. The lie kind of built up. Then, for some reason, there were plans for her to attend senior day at Notre Dame, so she had to be eliminated before then and, for some silly reason (or maybe for publicity), Manti and his buddy decided she should die. But that only ballooned into a bigger story and then he was stuck.
Gay or straight, this has publicity stunt written all over it. Sympathy votes and a bigger national profile. Nice summary of the problems in the story here:
That article sums it up for me: Thanks for posting it.
reckless if your speculation turns out to be true then if I were Manti the first thing I'd do is apologize, come out and be honest with folks about his concerns about being a gay player in the NFL. I think--in the end--he will be more respected and accepted for being truthful. If this was only about getting Heisman votes then he and his father are slimeballs. Or the final possibility is that he was a victim of a hoax but I think the news reports posted suggest this is not the case.
If this was Manti just trying to get Heisman votes and big commercial endorsements then he is almost as slimy as Madoff imo. I am really bothered that the dying girlfriend and grandmother were such big stories all semester long and NO ONE appears to have done any fact checking about the girlfriend.
This cancer fundraiser was done with the cooperation of the University AFTER officials were aware that the girl never existed.
As to fact checking, it appears that reporters did. Pete Thamel at SI admits to being unable to find an obituary, funeral notice or records of her attending Stanford and running the story anyway. An ESPN reporter checked for a funeral notice or obituary and asked for contact info for the family. He accepted the explanation that the family wanted privacy and the network ran the story. Trammel's account is up at SI's website along with a confusing transcript of his interview with Te'o this fall. At one point, Thamel actually says "this is unbelievable" in response to the story.
Last edited by PDilemma; 01-18-2013 at 12:58 AM. Reason: to correct name
It keeps getting better and better! SNL is going to have a blast with this.
"Michelle would never be caught with sausage grease staining her Vera Wang." - rfisher
A little humor.
The dead girlfriend story via Korean animation.
A fark thread courtesy of LSU football fans. Be warned that some are pretty crude. However, The Usual Suspects fark on page two is brilliant.
A couple of funny Te'o-related tweets.
And a HuffPo article about the Donald Trump/Deadspin twitter exchange that is censored in the prior thread (with the full tweet).
First...you gotta love Deadspin's response to the Donald. But I love the LSU thread most of all with "Manti and the Real Girl" and "Memen teo." Great stuff.
Sorry about getting the nationality of that video wrong. The link I followed said Korean and I didn't see anything on the actual YouTube page that said otherwise.
Just to add, because I couldn't resist: eHarmony: Manti and Lennay
Oh that is wickedly funny. I hope this person who is getting all of the blame sits down for an interview sometime.