Top NFL Draft Pick Manti Te’o Caught Up in a Hoax?!
* The young woman, who Te’o said was named Lennay Marie Kekua, not only didn’t die of leukemia — which was said to have been discovered after she was badly injured in an automobile accident last year — but never was alive.
* Te’o’s maternal grandmother, Annette Santiago, did pass away last Sept. 11 at the age of 72 in Hawaii. But the website could find no death certificate for Kekua. Nor a birth certificate. Nor was there any record of her attending Stanford University, from which she was said to have graduated and where Teo and Kekua were said to have met following a 2009 game.
* The hoax was perpetrated by Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, a high school classmate of the woman whose picture, unbeknownst to her, was used on social media and identified as Kekua. Deadspin also said Te’o and Tuiasosopo definitely know each other. Last June, Te’o wished Tuiasosopo a happy birthday on Twitter.
* Manti and Ronaiah are family,” said a woman contacted by Deadspin, “or at least family friends.” She told the website Tuiasosopo had been an on-field guest for the Nov. 24 Notre Dame-USC game in Los Angeles — a fact confirmed by USC — but it is not known whose guest he was. A tweet from Tuiasosopo’s since-deleted account suggests he and Te’o saw each other on that West Coast trip. “Great night with my bro @MTeo_5! #Heisman #574L,” Tuiasosopo tweeted on Nov. 23, the night before the game. – deadspin
Notre Dame Fighting Irish linebacker Manti Te’o, projected to be the No. 1 or No. 2 pick in the upcoming NFL Draft, has been “a victim” of an elaborate hoax! Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick spoke at a press conference on Wednesday night and exonerated the star linebacker, but still indicated that the scheme was quite elaborate! In early October, Te’o went on an ESPN interview and expressed his remorse for his grandmother’s recent passing (Sept 11) which was real, and also spoke about a relationship with a girlfriend, Lennay Marie Kekua, who also passed away (around the same time) after a long battle with leukemia! According to many reports, the popular vote, and now Notre Dame officials, Kekua never even existed! Conversely, one NFL player, Reagan Mauia, a fullback for the Arizona Cardinals indicated that the girlfriend is real! What a blow to the integrity to Notre Dame, and Te’o is now saying that he never met her in person, it was online deal, and that he was a victim of the hoax himself! Reportedly, a high school classmate, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, perpetrated the entire scheme w/o Te’os knowledge! Check out the exclusive ESPN interview on video below and details that deadspin.com released on Wednesday above!