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Te’o asks Couric, ‘What would you do?’

The interview will be shown in its entirety today at 2 p.m. on KITV

By Associated Press


NEW YORK >> Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o admitted to Katie Couric he answered questions about his “dead,” online girlfriend even after he received a call Dec. 6 from a woman posing as the fake person.

Te’o also maintained he played no part in the hoax.

Pressed by Couric to admit that he was in on the deception, the All-American said he was convinced the woman he knew as Lennay Kekua died in September. Te’o claims he never met Kekua in person, but developed a serious relationship with her through phone calls and electronic messages.

“Katie, put yourself in my situation. I, my whole world told me that she died on Sept. 12. Everybody knew that. This girl, who I committed myself to, died on Sept. 12,” Te’o said in an interview to air Thursday on Couric’s syndicated talk show. A segment of the interview with Te’o and his parents was broadcast Wednesday on “Good Morning America.”

“Now I get a phone call on Dec. 6, saying that she’s alive and then I’m going to be put on national TV two days later. And to ask me about the same question. You know, what would you do?” Te’o said.

The Heisman Trophy finalists made at least three references to his girlfriend in media interviews after Dec. 6, including during ESPN’s Heisman presentation show on Dec. 8.

Te’o’s father defended his son when Couric pointed out that many people don’t believe the Irish star, suspecting he used the situation for personal gain.

“People can speculate about what they think he is. I’ve known him 21 years of his life. And he’s not a liar. He’s a kid,” Brian Te’o said with tears in his eyes.

On Tuesday, the woman whose photo was used as the “face” of the Twitter account of Te’o’s supposed girlfriend says the man allegedly behind the hoax confessed and apologized to her.

Diane O’Meara told NBC’s “Today” show that Ronaiah Tuiasosopo used pictures of her without her knowledge in creating a fake woman called Lennay Kekua.

Te’o told ESPN last week that Tuiasosopo had contacted him to apologize for the hoax soon after Deadspin.com broke the news with a long report. Te’o told ESPN that not until Tuiasosopo confessed did he finally, fully realize Kekua did not exist.

Tuiasosopo has not commented on the scheme.

The top FBI agent in northern Indiana said authorities don’t believe a crime was committed, so there is no investigation.

“I don’t think there was any financial harm to Mr. Te’o,” said Robert Ramsey, FBI supervisory special agent for northern Indiana. “There was no federal violation regarding the Internet hoax perpetrated against Mr. Te’o.”

If there had been a crime, it would fall under federal jurisdiction, he said.

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serious wrote:
Let's move on. Even in this issue he's the Golden Boy. Too much hype put him in a corner.
on January 24,2013 | 04:12AM
fishwrider wrote:
alie will claim that this story and Manti are overplayed and a bore yet will post yet another message on the subject. at least "allie" and Tuiasosopo have something in common....both guys pretending to be women on the internet. LOL.
on January 24,2013 | 06:09AM
allie wrote:
on January 24,2013 | 07:21AM
Ripoff wrote:
"Allie" must be Ronaiah Tuiasosopo......lame....
on January 24,2013 | 09:43AM
allie wrote:
on January 24,2013 | 01:00PM
fishwrider wrote:
Great comeback, sir.
on January 24,2013 | 01:01PM
fishwrider wrote:
wow, another post from allie. you just proved my point. too easy.
on January 24,2013 | 01:15PM
Morimoto wrote:
Well said, but at least Tuiasosopo is receiving media coverage, while our Allie has to rely on internet comments to get his kicks.
on January 24,2013 | 08:49AM
Fred01 wrote:
You again. Why are you so obsessed with this "allie"?
on January 24,2013 | 08:58AM
allie wrote:
scary dude dat morimoto
on January 24,2013 | 09:24AM
Morimoto wrote:
Agreed I am scary, but I think Fred01 was actually replying to "fishwrider".
on January 24,2013 | 09:50AM
fishwrider wrote:
yes Morimoto is scary....people who tell the Truth are always scary to liars & phonies.
on January 24,2013 | 01:03PM
joewilly wrote:
No way!! Put yourself in the position of the GM'S and owners of NFL teams. It's your job to know everything about this situation before your pay him the big money. I know the NFL is infested with drunks, drug addicts, wife beaters, murderers, cheaters. You name it. He still has to answer the same questions 32 more times. This will continue to be a story weather you or the rest of the Manti lovers like it or not. More so now that the NY Daily News is reporting that Tuiasosopo disguised his voice as a women's the whole time. HA!,Manti was talking to a dude the WHOLE time! Too funny! You can't make it up! His draft selection is falling by the day.
on January 24,2013 | 06:34AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Ho hum, haters and losers like alie and joeW will always be jealous of successful people, while hiding behind made up names and anon.keyboards.
on January 24,2013 | 08:04AM
joewilly wrote:
I'm not a hater sole'. I'm just keeping it real. I love Manti, but the facts are the facts. He lost millions in endorsements because of this situation. He has to answer the same questions 32 more times. Is that hating? The only one hating is you! Faa'a Samoa! Ha! One Samoan embarrassing another to the world. Hawaiians say: AUWE!
on January 24,2013 | 09:21AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
JoeW loves Manti but he lost millions? So $$$ is more important then love? What is hating is your negative post. Love is to support the child that falls or make a mistake not continually berate him. Funny in the first post you said all you Manti lovers but didn't include yourself, then in the last post you said I love Manti but. Complete Internet scammer.
on January 24,2013 | 12:38PM
joewilly wrote:
Just because he's going to lose millions in endorsements that don't mean I don't wish the best for him. He's not a child. He's not a kid. He's a grown man. Stop making excuses. Look, everybody make mistakes. Just bringing out the fact that he's going to be asked the same question 32 more times. No hate here. Just reality.
on January 24,2013 | 02:44PM
allie wrote:
ummm wrong. I am the only one who said it is a personal problem and that we should move on. Teo keeps his publicity alive be going public and looking the fool for the nation.
on January 24,2013 | 09:25AM
cunfuzd4 wrote:
oh allie, you have outdone yourself. You are ALWAYS the first to cast stones on others because it distracts you from having to face your pathetic, sorry existence.
on January 26,2013 | 07:11AM
walaau808 wrote:
Do you really believe the stuff that's falling from your mouth? And if you do, why does it matter to you anyhow? You talking as if you've never made a mistake in your life. How about put yourself in Manti's position? Have a little compassion, since I know you aren't perfect...
on January 24,2013 | 09:50AM
allie wrote:
He was always a phoney hero. Notre dame manufactured him as a hero for their own selfish reasons.
on January 24,2013 | 07:20AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
And you was always a phony female manufactured by your selfish reason to throw stones from your pedestal.
on January 24,2013 | 08:07AM
allie wrote:
untrue//silly comment
on January 24,2013 | 09:26AM
droid wrote:
prove it.
on January 24,2013 | 09:43AM
fishwrider wrote:
Don't tempt him. allie will send pics of "Lennay Kekua" to you on the internet and claim it's proof that "he" is a "she".
on January 24,2013 | 02:50PM
walaau808 wrote:
silly only to you
on January 24,2013 | 09:55AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
true comment.
on January 24,2013 | 12:39PM
fishwrider wrote:
"bogus online persona"? hey allie, sound familiar? It wouldn't be blog if “allie” wasn't here 24/7 posting his (yes, "allie" is a guy..read on) broken record posts about how bad everything about/related to Hawaii is. Message board MO is a "UH coed freshman from North Dakota" so as not to be revealed as a straight-up outsider loser with an axe to grind. Problem with the MO is that allie has claimed to be a freshman on these blogs for the last three years (the three year freshman program?). Disrespects Hawaii in general and UH sports in particular even when pretending to give out a complement (i.e "team winning but plays a very weak schedule, players doing well but wouldn't make it anywhere else, etc.). allie's quotes on UH sand v-ball were "It sums up the importance of UH sports" and "embarrassing". BTW, what college kid is up at 5:00am EVERY MORNING, ALL DAY to log on to SA and post comments. Claimed at one point that "she" "played volleyball in ND and was invited to walk-on at UH. NOT!!!!...I KNOW THAT FOR A FACT. When confronted by my inquiry, allie backtracked and then claimed she asked to tryout and wasn't invited. Lying to cover his tracks is pathetic. FYI, allie was revealed to be a guy when "she" slipped and commented on watching 1980's Hawaii high school football when posting yet another rant about how weak the UH program was a few months back. Watch out guys.....LMFAO. Mahalo!
on January 24,2013 | 01:06PM
Pookie_Baby wrote:
"I don't think there was any financial harm to Mr. Te'o" Hey Robert, if his draft choice goes from top 5 in the first round, to 10-15, what will that cost him?
on January 24,2013 | 04:45AM
joewilly wrote:
Pookie, a lot IF he makes it to his fifth year. Under the new CBA labor agreement, all rookies sign 4 year contracts for the minimum of 400 thousand. A player can make more through endorsements, bonuses and incentives.In his fifth year, if he was originally selected in the first round between the 1st and 11th pick, he can get the average salary of the 10 best players in the league at his position (linebacker). That average is in the millions. He can and will get that. But, if he was selected between 11 and 32 then he gets the average of 1/3rd the salary of the players in the league at his position. That is a big difference. Millions. The good thing is, after his 4th year the teams interested in him don't have to abide by the CBA agreement. They can pay him whatever they think he's worth. But why pay more if you don't have to. Nothing personal; just business.
on January 24,2013 | 06:52AM
Pookie_Baby wrote:
Thanks for the clarification joe. I hope him the best. I think he's a great kid.
on January 24,2013 | 02:05PM
joewilly wrote:
Pookie, me too. Everybody makes mistakes. He needs to just take it one at a time from here on. Blow everybody out at the combine, and go from there. Good Luck!
on January 24,2013 | 02:47PM
allie wrote:
Teo is as boring as his phoney girl friend and lack of maturity and intelligence. He should just disappear and hope to have a decent NFL career. He does not look like much of a person or player now though.
on January 24,2013 | 07:22AM
ponowai wrote:
Must be like looking in the mirror to you, except for the NFL part and being a future millionaire. You should disappear, go back to your people. BTW don't put down Nortre Dame just because they wouldn't let your phony pathetic hass in.
on January 24,2013 | 09:20AM
allie wrote:
I did not apply..it is is not a good academic school hon. Football factory
on January 24,2013 | 09:26AM
fishwrider wrote:
This comment has been deleted.
on January 24,2013 | 01:12PM
fishwrider wrote:
SOURCE: US News and World Report - Best Colleges 2012
on January 24,2013 | 01:18PM
walaau808 wrote:
Only harm is in the signing bonus, and I'm not a big fan of huge signing bonuses without seeing what someone is capable of doing on the field.
on January 24,2013 | 09:56AM
dedicatedteacher7 wrote:
He lost credibility, which is hard to recover.
on January 24,2013 | 04:54AM
allie wrote:
on January 24,2013 | 09:26AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
He's 21 years old.....
on January 24,2013 | 02:29PM
OldDiver wrote:
As was pointed out, yesterday, Te'o was not asked about his fake girlfriend in Interviews after he found out about the hoax. He was answering general questions about the season and used that time to bring up the fake death on his own. The deception continues.
on January 24,2013 | 05:23AM
csdhawaii wrote:
Disagree with your assessment. He was in shock after finding out it was a hoax, hadn't come to terms with it, hadn't told anyone else about it yet when he gave interviews only two days later. He was still trying to figure it all out, so I don't blame him for continuing to answer questions about the fake girlfriend until he'd had a chance to talk things over with people he could trust to help him figure out what to do. It's a shame, a bad situation not created by his own doing. Old Diver, have you forgotten what it's like to be 21 years old? Even now, I'm sure you do things you regret later...we all do, no one is perfect. Give a 21 year old kid a break.
on January 24,2013 | 08:42AM
OldDiver wrote:
He was asked to comment about some of the highlights from the past season. He was not asked about his fake girlfriend. He was the one who brought it up, And by the way he forgot to mention the death of his grandmother.
on January 24,2013 | 10:25AM
false wrote:
I think its getting close for a shrink to step in.
on January 24,2013 | 09:12AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
I like when Rail is not mentioned for weeks! Silently making it happen! Imua Rail.
on January 24,2013 | 02:44PM
Loki wrote:
He needs to stop. He sounds less believable everytime he speaks.
on January 24,2013 | 05:34AM
allie wrote:
totally agree
on January 24,2013 | 09:27AM
Publicbraddah wrote:
"What would you do?" How about telling the truth? The most you would have suffered was embarrassment. By "briefly lying", people are now questioning your character. The pressure on a big time college player before the championship game must be tremendous but look at where you're at today. You can't buy character and it's hard to get back.
on January 24,2013 | 05:47AM
PinkSushi wrote:
So what do you think REALLY happened? Who do you think made up the story? I find it very hard to believe Manti Te'o fell for a fake gf. I remember thinking it was odd there was no previous story about his his "g'f" had leukemia. You had to assume that was a story the Hawaiii writers would have picked up on. I was also curious as to who the "gf" was. I follow Hawaii football and I was sure if I saw he rname, I would have recognized it as a sister of a Kahuku football player. But no name was given which I thought was odd, at the time. But I never ever suspected the entire thing was a ruse.
on January 24,2013 | 07:53AM
Publicbraddah wrote:
I don't know what really happened and we'll probably never know the truth. It's going to come down to what you and I believe happened. At this juncture, who cares. Let's just move on with our lives.
on January 24,2013 | 02:16PM
Loyalty wrote:
For three years the guy faked his voice and got away with it??? Cmon man....
on January 24,2013 | 06:48AM
false wrote:
Remember Prince Hanalei? LOL
on January 24,2013 | 09:13AM
kahu808 wrote:
Who do you think allie is?
on January 24,2013 | 09:58AM
makule1957 wrote:
Honesty is the best policy.
on January 24,2013 | 08:05AM
ready2go wrote:
What would one do? For starters, don't lie!
on January 24,2013 | 08:25AM
csdhawaii wrote:
You are too ready2be righteous.
on January 24,2013 | 08:43AM
false wrote:
Probably shut my mouth most of all.
on January 24,2013 | 09:22AM
PCWarrior wrote:
You can't hide your lyin' eyes And your smile is a thin disguise. I thought by now you'd realize, there ain't no way to hide your lyin eyes. Sheesh the papa say his son ain't a liar, then the son says he lied to the father about meeting the imaginary fake girlfriend who never existed but died. Don't think Teo is the Golden Boy no more. He make all Hawaii people look like hicks from the Beverly Hillbillies.
on January 24,2013 | 08:41AM
Morimoto wrote:
What would I do? Well for one I wouldn't talk intimately with someone over the phone if I haven't seen their face yet. Refusing to talk via video should have been a big red flag Manti.
on January 24,2013 | 08:51AM
false wrote:
Manti enough already. Go play ball.
on January 24,2013 | 09:05AM
kahuku01 wrote:
Majority of you that don't know Manti personally and have made negative or speculating remarks should just move on and mind your own business especially when this whole hoax has nothing to do with any of you. Despite all the rumors that are circulating, I'm sure in time he and his family will be able to overcome this whole situation without anyone's unneeded negative opinion. Who cares if this hoax has gone for several years and the fact of the matter is he has not done harm or created a crime to any one of you. It's already an embarrassing issue for Manti and his family but you don't stomp a person when their down or rub salt in the wounds because only the haters or overly jealous would do such a thing. People find out who their friends are when they're in need of support and not all these thrash talking...We live in the land of Aloha and sometimes a little aloha spirit will help heal the wound.
on January 24,2013 | 09:16AM
allie wrote:
nobody has done that. He has done that to himself. We just asked for him to avoid any more embarrassing appearances on tv. Let us move on and let him have a good NFL career.
on January 24,2013 | 09:28AM
kahuku01 wrote:
Nobody has done that? Are you on the same page? Read the blogs and there are several negative remarks. Agree, he has done that to himself and let him and his family handle and deal with the situation. He doesn't need any more negative remarks especially when people don't have the facts and do a lot of speculating.
on January 24,2013 | 10:07AM
hvagd1 wrote:
He admitted he played along with "the hoax" well after he knew the "girlfriend" was not dead (December 6). He had an opportunity and obligation to step up and expose it, but instead perpetuated the hoax by failing to stand up and admit he was duped The whole country bought into this story. Those of us who admired his courage now find out that we also were duped...hence, the comments. True, he did not commit a crime,
on January 24,2013 | 10:20AM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Failing to stand and admit he was duped?? 2 days before the Heisman award? 1 month before the College championship? He's 21 people.....he made a mistake. All these other stories are spin from the media. Can anyone come out and call him a college binge drinker? A drug user? A womanizer? Have a mug shot of him? Please send it forward to the media....oh don't send the college AllAmerican academic or his GPA. Don't send his Scout Eagle badge....please send dirt.
on January 24,2013 | 02:39PM
hvagd1 wrote:
Couric pressed as well..why perpetuate the hoax?? If one possess all of the qualities of being an Eagle scout, having the church affiliations, etc, all the more reason to come forth..a lot of backlash could have been prevented by making a statement. I'm not a hater, but look at what has ensued by putting it on the back burner just to get through all the festivities of the post season accolades..
on January 24,2013 | 04:58PM
Sully77 wrote:
HEY ALLIE! you say Te'o doesn't look much like a person, or a player now!! so my question to you is, if he doesn't look like a person, or a player, What does he look like now?..
on January 24,2013 | 10:24AM
allie wrote:
um...a little silly
on January 24,2013 | 01:02PM
fishwrider wrote:
that would be you sir.
on January 24,2013 | 01:15PM
cunfuzd4 wrote:
No, silly would be allie continuing to pretend to be a UN co-ed after he's given ample evidence that he's too dumb and too lazy to even graduate from any accredited high school. Te'o will move on and learn from this experience. Allie however, will forever continue to be a useless DOLT. Some people are capable of learning and bettering themselves, Allie is NOT one of them.
on January 26,2013 | 06:55AM
cunfuzd4 wrote:
correction UH co-ed
on January 26,2013 | 06:57AM
Rcollier1941 wrote:
I think it's time to drop all the criticism and move on. Manti Teó represented Hawaii while attending at a great university (ND) and this bump in the road by all means that we should now throw stones at him. Teó may drop a few notches in the draft not because of this so call hoax but his lack luster performance in this years BCS Champ. game. I stand behind this young man and hope he will still be in the the top 10 in this years NFL draft.
on January 24,2013 | 11:09AM
PinkSushi wrote:
yeah, he didn;t make any plays that game. Manto Te'o did hurt his draft status because of a subpar performance, but then again, nobody can play with that hanging over his head, knowing it will go public in another week after the BCS title game. Nobody can play under those circumstances. We are humans, not robots.
on January 24,2013 | 11:26AM
allie wrote:
we all hope he succeeds..we are just tired of his lies and silly, embarrassing interviews
on January 24,2013 | 01:02PM
fishwrider wrote:
YAWN, sir.
on January 24,2013 | 01:23PM
NanakuliBoss wrote:
Time to go Moimoi sir, going to college ,blogging for hours then working all night in a pizzeria in a sketchy neighborhood at night can be heroic! Don't ask me "what would You Do if you were Me"? I just don't know how you do it.
on January 24,2013 | 02:43PM
cunfuzd4 wrote:
Funny comment coming from someone that has been caught in as many lies as you have. Allie, I think we are beginning to understand why you are as full of sh*t as you are. You obviously are incapable of bettering your sorry lot in life so you seek to constantly focus on the shortcomings of others, evidently that makes you feel better about yourself. But allie, even after taking digs at someone, nothing has changed you are still the miserable loser that you are. I pity you as I could not even begin to imagine how much it would suck to have to wake up and be you every day.
on January 26,2013 | 07:04AM
niimi wrote:
I think Ronaiah is dakine. You know, the kine. And I'm not talking about a positive crankcase ventilation valve.
on January 24,2013 | 03:14PM