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Explosive news has come out about Notre Dame’s gifted defensive player Manti Te’o. Te’o was the linebacker that America fell in love with. He went through tragedy at the beginning of the season and led his team defensively to an undefeated season and to a BCS Championship game. On September 11, 2012, Te’o was set out to play Michigan State with his teammates when he got some of the worst news of his life.
Te’o’s grandmother had passed away and later on he found out his girlfriend, Lennay Marie Kekua, was killed in a serious car accident. She had already been diagnosed with leukemia in June 2012. Everyone’s heart went out to him and was captivated with his poise on the field when his team upset Michigan State 20-3. He was a true vision of strength and will. Well, it turns out things are not always as they appear….
Te’o’s grandmother did pass away which is absolutely tragic, BUT Lennay Marie Kekua was never his ‘girlfriend’ and she never died that day. Deadspin has uncovered one of the craziest stories in sports. The pictures of Kekua that have been used by the media came from a California girl whose name has not be made public. Kekua and Te’o did not meet in 2009, in fact his Twitter account states that they met much later in 2011. Kekua was allegedly created by one of Te’o’s friends, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo. Tuiasosopo has done tricked other people with the Kekua account, but it was only brought to light because of Te’o’s rise to fame.
So… Lennay Kekua did not meet Te’o, did not have leukemia, did not get in a car accident, and she was never laid to rest. Whoa and we all thought MTV’s show Catfish was crazy? So did this girl/guy “Catfish” Te’o or did he set up this elaborate plan to garner sympathy from America. If Te’o did come up with this story he is one wild imagination, too much time on his hands, and he is to blame for the blowout his team suffered against Alabama in the BCS Championship game. We definitely need an Oprah interview for this mess of a situation. I can’t wait to see how the Te’o family handles this situation…
Notre Dame has released this statement, “Notre Dame coaches informed Dec 26 by Manti Te’o & parents Manti had been victim of what appears to be a hoax. Lennay Kekua apparently ingratiated herself w/Manti & then conspired w/others to lead him believe she had tragically died of leukemia. Proper authorities continue to investigate, this appears to be, at minimum, a sad & very cruel deception to entertain its perpetrators.”
Te’o issued this statement shortly after claiming that he was just a victim of a hoax and had no hand in the prank:
“This is incredibly embarrassing to talk about, but over an extended period of time, I developed an emotional relationship with a woman I met online. We maintained what I thought to be an authentic relationship by communicating frequently online and on the phone, and I grew to care deeply about her. To realize that I was the victim of what was apparently someone’s sick joke and constant lies was, and is, painful and humiliating. It further pains me that the grief I felt and the sympathies expressed to me at the time of my grandmother’s death in September were in any way deepened by what I believed to be another significant loss in my life. I am enormously grateful for the support of my family, friends and Notre Dame fans throughout this year. To think that I shared with them my happiness about my relationship and details that I thought to be true about her just makes me sick. I hope that people can understand how trying and confusing this whole experience has been. In retrospect, I obviously should have been much more cautious. If anything good comes of this, I hope it is that others will be far more guarded when they engage with people online than I was. Fortunately, I have many wonderful things in my life, and I’m looking forward to putting this painful experience behind me as I focus on preparing for the NFL Draft.”
Thank you Deadspin for bringing this story to forefront.
The Broncos may have lost, but Peyton Manning still had the class to say goodbye to a future Hall of Famer. Peyton Manning and Ray Lewis may be similar in age, but their careers are in completely different places. Manning was looking to reestablish his presence in the NFL after taking a year off due to a neck surgery, his fourth over his career. While Lewis is also recovering from an injury, he has decided this is it for him. It is either now or never for Lewis to win another Super Bowl, something he has not done since 2000. Well, Manning will luckily get another chance at Super Bowl glory while Lewis and the Baltimore Ravens advanced to the AFC Conference Game. Never being a sore loser, Manning went up to Lewis in the Ravens’ locker room to wish him luck in the playoffs and whatever he chooses to do after. He took his entire family there, but the media was already gone which made it extra special. It was a beautiful moment between two of the game’s best players. Future players can learn a thing or two from these two legends.
The first time these two teams met this season, it was a bad day for Houston fans. The Texans talked all week about how big this game was and Tom Brady showed how he performs in big games. If they thought Brady was lethal in the regular season, they don’t know the monster they will face today when its playoff time in Foxborough. Tom Brady and company live for these moments and usually flourishes in them. The Texans? Well, they did win last week against Cincinnati, but they have not come up big in big games. It is quite a shame because they have such a talented squad with Arian Foster, Andre Johnson, and JJ Watt.
January games in Gillette Stadium are what Tom Brady dreams of. The Texans might not get embarrassed again, but Brady isn’t losing. He is having yet another MVP year and one of his favorite targets, Rob Gronkowski, is playing today. Sorry, Houston, but today is just not your day. Texans or Patriots, who you takin?
One team has everything to prove, while the other has already exceeded ,. The Atlanta Falcons know how to make the playoffs; they just haven’t figured out how to win yet. However, the Falcons have been playing better than ever and Matt Ryan is having his best season. They will need Ryan to have a great game against this physical Seahawks’ defense. The Seahawks are a totally different story. Everybody knows that quarterback Russell Wilson is not only a rookie, but was chosen in the sixth round. He has led his team all season, including a win last week against the Washington Redskins in the Wild Card Round. However, during that game, they lost Chris Clemons a defensive lineman with double digit sacks in the regular season to a torn ACL.
If Atlanta loses this game, it would result in huge changes there. This team is making its fourth playoff appearance and if they can’t figure it out yet, then something has to change. I don’t think Atlanta will win, but I think they will put up a fight until the last second of the game. I think this game will be decided by no more than three points. Seattle is just too hot and we saw the Carolina Panthers beat the Falcons with Cam Newton’s run ability similar to Wilson’s style of play. I’m sorry Atlanta, but I think you are one and done again. Seattle or Atlanta, who you takin to meet the 49ers?