I’m not staying up nearly as late as I did last night/this morning when I compiled yesterday’s post on all the news that came out in regards to the Manti Te’o hoax.
More news has come out and this story has yet again taken even more crazy twists and turns. This will likely continue until Manti speaks and tells his side of the story, but until then, the speculation and craziness will remain.
But hey, the Roundup must go on right? Let’s get to the latest developments in this circus.
There is one member of the Te’o family that spoke out. Manti’s uncle, Alema Te’o, did an interview on The Zone Sports Network. In the interview, Alema talks about how Manti met Ronaiah Tuiasosopo before the USC game, along with a young girl introduced as Pookah, supposedly a cousin of Leenay, but in reality was Ronaiah’s little sister. Further, in this meeting, Ronaiah continuously brought up fundraising efforts that he was trying to start for yet another Stanford girl suffering from Leukemia. Perhaps we have more of a motive than just pulling a prank now.
If you don’t have 30 minutes to devote to listening to that interview. You can catch the highlights here.
The rest of the Tuiasosopo family though has stayed rather silent. Save for this Facebook post from Ronaiah’s father, Titus.
It seems that Ronaiah tends to go to the same well…a lot. First, there’s the story from Alema Te’o about him fabricating yet another girl with Leukemia above and then there is this piece from US Weekly (I cannot believe I’m actually linking something from there), that Ronaiah tried out for The Voice and had a great sob story about being in a car accident. You just can’t make up this level of WTF.
Apparently, Manti was supposed to talk this past Monday. According to Pat Forde’s sources, that was waived off. Further there was conflict within ND as to whether or not let the Te’o family break the news or to do it themselves. Of course, Deadspin then forced their hand on Wednesday.
While we await for Manti to answer everyone’s questions, we can look to his words in September. Sports Illustrated has released the entire transcript from his interview. It’s definitely well worth reading, especially to see that the rabbit hole went even deeper on this scam as Manti was led to believe that Lennay nearly died twice in her coma post-car accident and that even his high school teammate admitted to knowing Lennay even though he had never met her.
All of it.
No, I’m not being lazy. I’m dead serious. We all need a beer or twenty after this week.
- HLS Podcast: Previewing the Irish – Magazines, Vegas, and SP+ - July 30, 2021
- HLS Podcast: Conference Realignment 2 – Red River Boogaloo - July 22, 2021
- HLS Podcast: Welcome to the NIL Era - July 9, 2021