Sorry Tex, unscheduled rant coming…
Excuse me, WHAT THE HELL IS KATIE COURIC DOING? The whole world should be calling her out for the BS she displayed yesterday. Not gonna? Okay then, I will. Thanks Katie, for getting me back into RANT MODE.
Don’t get me wrong, I actually thought 95% of her interview was decent. It wasn’t soft, she asked some tough questions, but those questions deserved to and needed to be asked. For her to look at all professional, and to give Manti a chance to answer them.
But then Katie went too far. Katie went off the ledge. Katie went bat-shit-CRAZY when she started talking about how she would’ve handled the situation. How SHE would’ve done it differently. How SHE would’ve done it RIGHT.
GIVE ME AN EFFING BREAK. Let’s break this down for a second.
First, and most importantly, Katie is about as far as possible from being Manti Teo. She’s an old, white, washed-up reporter, and she’s a she. Manti is a young, male, Morman, Samoan/Hawaiian wrecking ball of a linebacker that attended a Catholic school and played D1 Football. THIS IS A DIFFERENT FREAKING WORLD WOMAN! I mean, there are a ton of things closer to Manti than you…
So that’s point one. You have no idea what you’d do if you were him. BECAUSE YOU ARE LITERALLY NOTHING LIKE HIM.
But, Daytime TV Talk Show hosts spin BS all the time. So, moving on, the second biggest problem with her ‘advice’ was that she used the complete timeline of information to inform how she’d have reacted and behaved. Guess what Katie, when this was all going down MANTI DIDN’T KNOW EVERYTHING YOU KNOW NOW YOU SILLY WOMAN! You can’t just take all of this data that you now have at your disposal and assume that, MONTHS AGO, Manti had the same information. Of COURSE he’d have behaved differently if he’d known it was all a hoax you twit. That tells us absolutely nothing.
Sooooo, since she’s so perfectly able to rip apart past situations, let’s find out What Would Katie Do (WWKD):
If she’s Steven Spielberg, SHE would never put Jar Jar Binks in the prequels. #WWKD
If she were Brian Kelly, SHE would’ve never called that pass play against Tulsa. #WWKD
If she were the Jets Organization, SHE would’ve never taken Tebow. #WWKD
The rest of the interview, like I said, was fair. But this was so far over the line. It was pompous, full of righteous indignation that Teo didn’t at all deserve, and disgusting from an ‘adult’. I never cared about Katie Couric. Wasn’t ever on my radar. Now she officially sucks.
And for all the ‘haters’ who may comment saying ‘yeah Manti still lied’ or ‘I’m an idiot listen to my stupid point that’s irrelevant’ I am not saying any of this exonerates Manti. He didn’t do everything perfectly and he is paying DEARLY. But that’s not the point. The point is that Katie Couric had the chance to be a journalist. To get a story and to dig deep. She started off down that path. But then, at some point, she decided to switch to being a moron. That’s the point. KATIE COURIC, you’re on the HLS WatchList. You don’t want to be there. I’ll see you on Twitter. Loser.
Disclaimer: THIS IS JUST MY THEORY. I know nothing. This is an outline of my impression of what happened based on the publicly available info I’ve reviewed the past 24 hours. No sources, no interviews, nothing proprietary informed this. I think I may be right, it’s my best guess.
1. Teo believed this was a real person. He was duped on that part. It’s sick and wrong and disturbing.
2. Teo had a real relationship (to him), online and on the phone with this ‘person’. He became close with ‘her’.
3. ‘She’ was never his girlfriend. Either he allowed the media to characterize in that way originally and ran with it, or he created that characterization for some reason. But ‘girlfriend’ in the literal sense was not true.
4. This means that Teo is a victim yes, but not completely blameless either.
Never once did I believe that this person was actually Manti Teo’s girlfriend. Yeah, you might not believe it when I say it, but it’s very true. When he talked about her, and their relationship, when this all first started coming out in the media, it just never felt real in the literal sense of the word. The way he spoke about her, the attitude and the words, never really rung true for me. But honestly, I didn’t think it mattered all that much because she had just passed away. So Manti had a long-time, childhood (my impression) friend that was really sick that he got close to. And when she passed, he called her his girlfriend. Or maybe the media did and he didn’t correct them. But when she really existed, this wasn’t a big deal. Perhaps he wanted to honor her with the title. Perhaps he wishes she had been his girlfriend. But it didn’t really matter all that much, because regardless the kid had just lost 2 people very close to him. And compassion requires us to not really care that much.
But I did think it was odd. Out of curiosity, that MSU week I googled her. I dug around for 15 minutes to learn more about the car accident and cancer, as I thought it was a sadly remarkable story. When I found nothing, I put it off as ‘eh, most people don’t get articles written about them when they get sick’ and let it go. Oops.
Now, with what we know, the lies and half-truths and momentum all intermingle. It’s difficult to know where truth ends and half-truths begin, where half-truths end and lies begin, and where lies end and planned/deliberate falsification of an entire narrative begins. For Manti, I think it ends with lies. Yes, I think Manti Teo lied about the type and level of his relationship with this girl. I do not think that he knew she didn’t exist. I do not think that he was ‘in on it’ in the way that many do. But Manti screwed up here. Perhaps not with sinister or self-serving intentions, but he screwed up nonetheless.
But ultimately, how we judge him and his character going forward has much more to do with the motivation behind said stories, rather than the concoctions themselves.
To wit: Motive.
Motive 1: Blow this story up so I can win the Heisman. If this is true, he has become the Enemy. If this is true, he took the heart and soul of a University, the trust of his community and family, and smashed it. If this is true, I am disillusioned and disheartened and angry. Let me state my theory: I do not believe this is true. I don’t think Manti Teo is some evil PR genius. 1. It seems so wildly out of character from everything else he has done 2. It seems completely implausible given his background, upbringing and resources and 3. It’s just too wildly outlandish (yes, I just said that despite the last 24 hours). I just don’t think it’s possible that Manti Teo planned to use his close-friend-that-was-a-girl’s death to propel Heisman fame.
Motive 2: Honor her memory. This one seems more plausible to me. Manti had gotten very close to this person, and as she was ‘dying’ they shared a lot of intimate things. While he never met her, he felt very close to her. He shared important time with her on the phone, twitter, and via email. He was invested emotionally. Then when someone characterized her as his girlfriend, his heart told him ‘yeah, that’s what she was’ and he went with it. (Or, again, he put it out there first, still not sure on that one) It’s not accurate in terms of the traditional definition, it’s not a fact, and it’s not ‘right’, but he did it anyway. And then the next week, someone asks him more about it, and he’s not sure what to do. I can’t backtrack now, can I? So he repeats, and digs a little deeper. Then ND starts winning, and the story gets bigger. Deeper. Then an interview, deeper. Then another. Deeper. Essentially, Manti had one chance to be clear about his relationship, and it slipped past, never to be regained.
Motive 3: Momentum. This is exactly the same happening as Motive 2 except the why it happened is different. In 2 it’s about his honoring a girl he really cared about. In this one, he’s just a young and naive college kid that let everything get away from him. The story built upon itself, and he was just trying to keep his head above water with it. This led to a number of lies, lies of omission or half-truths.
I really think it was 2 or 3, and if I had to guess it was 2 (with 3 following on). I don’t know, but this is what I think happened.
Make no mistake, I believe Manti was conned. Catfished. Big time. I think he bought in hook, line and sinker as Tex said. I don’t believe for a second he was ‘in on it’. To believe that I would have to believe he is evil. I don’t think he is. To believe he was conned I have to believe he is very gullible/naive, and a bit thick. I find these, though still not great things to believe, more plausible. Think about it: this is a guy whose entire life is based on belief. Faith. He is not a critical, skeptical thinker. He’s relatively innocent, he’s relatively young, and he bought it. Those that think, at least based on evidence to date, that he was the mastermind behind the whole thing, have an agenda to push. Is it possible? Sure. But I see no evidence that leads to that. And Jack Swarbrick’s PC testimony lends a lot of credence to the case that he was duped. Jack is a smart, smart man. With resources.
So what do we think about Manti Teo if I’m right? If he was duped, but played a part in sensationalizing and embellishing the nature of the relationship, although for a relatively innocent reason?
Well, number 1, the myth is shattered regardless. There’s no getting back the Manti we knew 2 days ago. That Manti is gone forever.
But do we villify? Do we attack? Do we hate? No. We don’t. We listen and try to gather as many facts as possible and we take theory to truth. And then we make our collective call as fans, haters, as society. But if I’m right, if this theory holds, we look at Teo yes, as a victim. And also as a guy that got in way over his head, and didn’t know what to do next. We look at him as a very fallible, very young, super naive kid that made one mistake and then tried to keep that story alive, for a ton of reasons. We look at him with sad eyes, not with angry ones. Because ultimately he made a mistake, and that’s about it. Just turns out it was a very big one that only became bigger and is now the biggest it could possibly be.
Regardless, the damage has been done. To Teo and his legacy, to ND and to the Football program. This is a PR and brand disaster for Notre Dame, and once again ND has a ton of work to do to rectify and regain trust and brand prestige. It will be a monumental task for Jack Swarbrick, Father Jenkins and BK. But it’s one that they will have to address head-on and fix as best they can over time.
For Teo, he will still be drafted, he will still make millions, and he will still be the guy that got duped by a Catfish. But he’ll never be the guy we all thought we had. The perfect person, student, and player that was an absolutely perfect and infallible representation of all that Notre Dame stands for.
Because, sadly folks, that guy never existed either.
But please, remember. Theory.
We’re gonna win!
Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? HELL NO.
We’re gonna FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT!
There’s no I in TEAM!
When the chips are down, and you are walking uphill both ways in the snow, this is when you try harder!
He’s a MAN, He’s NOT A MACHINE!
Pain heals, chicks dig scars.
I DON’T KNOW WHAT WE’RE YELLING ABOUT!
If We Don’t Come Together, Right Now on this Hallowed Ground, We Too Will Be Destroyed.
KING KONG’S GOT NOTHIN’ ON ME!
On This Team, We Fight For that Inch. We Tear Ourselves and Everyone Else Around Us for that Inch. Because we KNOW, when we add up all those inches, that’s gonna make the FUCKIN DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WINNIN’ AND LOSIN’. BETWEEN LIVIN’ AND DYIN’!
If he dies, he dies.
I am your Father, Luke.
DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES?
The English are Too Many.
Today, We Celebrate…Our INDEPENDENCE DAY!
They May Take Our Lives, But They Will NEVER TAKE OUR FREEEEEDOOOOOOOOM!!!!
HOOSIERS! KARATE KID! REMEMBER THE TITANS!
This is not a game. THIS. IS. NOT. A. GAME!
While Her Loyal Sons are Marching Onward to Victory!
RUDY RUDY RUDY RUDY!
GO IRISH! BEAT THE EFF OUTTA BAMA!
LISA LISA AKA @4LeafCloverGirl!
That’s right folks, Lisa has officially joined the HLS crew as the first Loyal Daughter on Staff. She’ll be bringing to HLS her immense talents as demonstrated on Twitter, and in her past writing at respected outlets such as UHND and No Coast Bias. We’re super excited about her joining the team, and I can’t wait for the analysts to talk about my amazing recruiting skills. This is a 5-Star Recruit folks, a game-changer!
Without further ado, here is Lisa’s BCS Championship Preview for your reading pleasure. Welcome, Lisa!
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Coffee in hand I greet the new year and sit down to write my final Notre Dame football preview of the year, Notre Dame vs. Alabama.
Notre Dame football, with a 12-0 season, once again returns to college football relevance and heads to the national title game for the first time in 24 years. But does a young and inexperienced team like Notre Dame have what it takes to beat a battle-tested defending national title team like Alabama? Alabama has been in this national spotlight before and knows exactly what it takes to win the big game.
Many comparisons have been made between this year’s Notre Dame squad and the 1988 ND team which was the last to bring the crystal football home to South Bend. In 1988 the undefeated ND squad beat West Virginia in the Fiesta Bowl to bring home the national title. This year’s team will attempt to match that same feat.
There is something magical about a coach’s third year at Notre Dame. Frank Leahy, Ara Parseghian, Dan Devine and Lou Holtz all won national titles during their third year as a head coach at Notre Dame. Brian Kelly, in his third season at ND will attempt to join this storied list of national championship winning coaches.
“The tradition of Alabama and Notre Dame brings special attention to it, but we’re just trying to be the best team on Monday, Jan. 7,” Kelly, the AP coach of the year and Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award winner, told the media.
“All of that tradition, what’s happened in the past, is not going to help us Jan. 7, but we do respect the traditions.”
The fact that Notre Dame has made it to the national title game this year is quite a surprise, even to the Notre Dame faithful. Many alumni and fans didn’t think this day would come again anytime soon after suffering through rough patches with coaches Bob Davie, Tyrone Willingham and Charlie Weis. Coach Brian Kelly didn’t have the most magical of starts either, losing games on controversial calls, with defeats at the hands of Tulsa and South Florida being at the top of that list.
Does the Irish defense have what it takes to stop Alabama and their “SEC speed”?
“Well, that’s who we are,” said Kelly, whose team won six times by nine or fewer points. “It’s been our defense all year. Our offense is able to manage enough points.”
When the Irish defense takes the field on Jan. 7 keep your eyes on Heisman Trophy runner-up Manti Te’o. He will be a significant factor in Notre Dame’s ability to stop Alabama’s running game. The senior linebacker has had seven interceptions and 103 tackles this year, and has proved to be the heart and soul of this Irish squad.
“We’re going to fight,” Te’o said after the USC win. “That’s our name. It doesn’t matter where we are.”
Te’o will have plenty of help from his fellow teammates, on a defense that is loaded with leaders and playmakers. Stephon Tuitt had 12 sacks and 13 tackles for loss, Prince Shembo had 7 1/2 sacks and 10 1/2 tackles for loss and senior captain Kapron Lewis-Moore contributed six sacks and 8 1/2 tackles for loss.
Notre Dame’s defense led the country this season with 10.3 points allowed per game and was ranked sixth nationally in the FBS with 288.1 yards. With the 303-pound Tuitt and 326-pound nose tackle Louis Nix up front, the Irish may be one of the few teams with a defensive line that can match up with the powerful Alabama offensive line anchored by All-American center Barrett Jones.
Alabama’s (12-1) national title hopes were also hanging in the balance earlier this season after being upset 29-24 by then-No. 15 ranked Texas A&M on Nov. 10. The timely losses by Kansas State and Oregon, though, pushed the Crimson Tide into the No. 2 spot in the BCS rankings on Nov. 18.
They held the No. 2 spot by winning their last three games including having to come from behind to beat Georgia 32-28 in the SEC championship game on Dec. 1. With the Tide down by 11, the Irish faithful almost saw Georgia take Alabama’s place in the national title game but the Crimson Tide proved once again that their veteran leadership knows how to win the big games.
As decisive and powerful as the Irish have been on defense, Alabama has been equally as tough if not better. Alabama was ranked second this season behind Notre Dame with 10.7 points allowed per game and ranked first with 246.0 yards per contest. The Crimson Tide staunch defense recorded 34 sacks, 81 tackles for loss and 17 interceptions.
While the Alabama – Notre Dame matchup could prove to be a low scoring game given the defensive prowess of these teams, Alabama’s offense definitely has an experience advantage over the Notre Dame offense lead by a red shirt freshman quarterback Everett Golson.
Alabama’s 38.5 points per game ranks them 15th in the FBS. Led by sophomore tight end Corey McCarron (26 touchdowns, three interceptions, 173.1 passer rating) and with a ground attack that boasts two 1,000-yard rushers in junior running back Eddie Lacy and freshman running back T.J. Yeldon, the Irish defense will need to be nearly perfect the slow down the Tide offense. The two Alabama backs ran for 27 TDs. The Tide had 10 400 yards games and topped 500 yards four times. The Crimson Tide had an impressive 512 yards against the Georgia Bulldogs in the SEC championship contest, rushing for a season-high 350 yards.
Notre Dame, on the other hand, has a very young offensive unit lead by freshman quarterback Everett Golson. Golson has done an impressive job this season of running the Notre Dame offense despite his lack of experience. The red shirt freshman threw for 2,135 yards and 11 scores with only five interceptions (131.8 rating) while also rushing for 305 yards and five touchdowns. Notre Dame’s run-heavy offense was led this year by senior running backs Theo Riddick (880 yards rushing) and Cierre Wood (740). Their veteran experience helped push Notre Dame to the 11th spot in the nation in time of possession at 32 minutes, 34 seconds per game. The Irish averaged 202.5 rushing yards per game.
The Fighting Irish and the Crimson tide have each won eight AP national titles, more than any other college football programs. As college football fans await the meeting of these two storied teams they can only hope the game brings the drama that came the last time they met for a championship. In 1973 a Parseghian-led Irish squad met a Bear Bryant-led Crimson Tide and Notre Dame hung on to beat Alabama by a score of 24-23 in the 1973 Sugar Bowl to win the AP title.
The Irish and the Tide have met six times, five of which have been won by Notre Dame. The last meeting came in 1987, when the Irish rolled the Tide 37-6.
Here come the Irish …
[special thanks to No Coast Bias for allowing the re-print of the article]
Twas the Week Before the Big Game, and All through the land,
Not an expert picked the Irish, but of course did the fans.
From East Coast to West Coast in their gold and their blue,
they prayed “Baby Jesus, just once more guide us true’
To the endzone we go, through the red and the white,
and we hear from Santa “Victory to ND, and to ND a Good Night!”
Hope all Her Loyal Readers have an amazing Christmas Holiday, and that we all give up all of our presents in exchange for a National Championship.
Love you guys.