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These will be a bit random in order, but here's what I collected while listening to Schaap on SportsCenter multiple times late Friday night. A more comprehensive summary of the story written by Wes Morgan will be available on our homepage soon.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by Dan Murphy 18 months ago
"Every question was answered. He admitted to a couple of mistakes along the way — lying to his father on one occasion that led to some inconsistencies that have been pointed out in the media over the last 48 hours." - Schaap
Schaap asked directly, multiple times, if Te'o was involved. He said no. He never knew anything about it.
On why he told people he met Kekua in person:
"That goes back to what I did with my dad. I knew that. I even knew that it was crazy that I was with somebody that I didn’t meet. And that alone, people find out that the girl who I died that I was so invested in and I didn’t meet her as well… So I kind of tailored my stories to have people thing that, yeah, he met her before he passed away."
"He never wavered. I don’t know how many questions I asked him but he answered every single one of them. He was extremely convincing to my ears," - Schaap
"It was clear that he felt better having unburdened himself of this in the sense that he felt all along people would come to believe him when he had the chance to fully explain himself. He spent a couple of days thinking about it and he knew this was the right thing to do." - Schaap
He said Te'o was not 100 percent sure that Kekua didn't exist until two days ago. A group of people, including one who claimed to be Kekua, showed up at Notre Dame's team hotel in Miami prior to the national championship game, according to ESPN.com
Te'o said Ronaiah Tuiasosopo sent apology message to Te'o Wednesday taking responsibility for the hoax.
"[Tuiasosopo] said that he felt terrible about this and it spun out of control and it wasn’t his intentions to make him suffer through something like this."
"Maybe I sound too convince, but I’m just telling you the way that Manti Te’o told me the story I came away finding it very believable." - Schaap
Schaap said Te'o admitted to lying to his father about meeting Kekua one day in Hawaii around New Year's in 2012. He said Te'o left his family's home thinking he was on his way to meet Kekua, but she never showed.
"He gets home, he doesn’t want to get into a larger discussion about it with his parents who he understands might think something is strange in this relationship, and he says, 'Yeah I just saw Lennay.'"
"He said when he described her as the love of his life he meant it 100 percen, although they had never met. But he did mislead people by saying he had met her and he did so because he knew how crazy it would sound that he felt this deeply about someone he had never met."
Schaap said Te'o developed a ritual with Kekua where every day they would share a different quote from the Bible and discuss it. Eventually Te'o's parents also joined in on the discussion via group text messages.
On why the interview was not done in front of a camera:
"That’s a good question. Obviously, we wanted him to be on camera. That is the preference, but he wanted to do this in a more intimate setting, you know, without the lights without 20 people in the room. He wanted to have a discussion in this fashion. That’s not the most unusual thing in the world, obviously. We would have liked it to have been on camera but he wanted to do it this way. I think it probably made him more comfortable."
Te'o disputed the theory that he was naive when it came to romantic relationships. He said he has had had other serious girlfriends, including a girl he started to date this fall after Kekua's apparent death.
Schaap said: "He said that he got sucked into [the relationship with Kekua] because he felt he was talking to someone he shared a lot with in terms of background, Samoan background. She understood the culture. She understood the language, spoke it better than he did apparently from some of the texts he showed me. This person, whoever it was, made this emotional connection with him that he said drew him in."
This post was edited by Dan Murphy 18 months ago
The relationship, Schaap said, was only intense over the course of a few months after the people who said they were Kekua's siblings told Te'o that she had been in a car accident.
Schaap said Te'o beleived Ronaiah Tuiasosopo was Kekua's cousin. They met only once, during the week that Notre Dame played USC in Los Angeles. Te'o thought he would be meeting one of Kekua's sisters that day, but Tuiasosopo showed up with a young girl Te'o knew as Pookah. Pookah, 9, played the role of Kekua's younger cousin.
Kekua told Te'o while she was still "alive" that Pookah was like a niece and gave him the impression that she had a hand in raising Pookah.
Their relationship started on Facebook in 2010. It went from friendship to a closer relationship a year later when Kekua told Te'o her father had died.
"I was that shoulder to cry on," Teo told Schaap.
Schaap said Te'o showed him Facebook correspondence with other people that had verified Kekua's exitstence. They, too, were apparently duped or were all part of the scam.
Schaap on the phone call Te'o received in December:
"What Manti Te’o told me was that after he gets this phone call on Dec. 6 and somebody says I’m alive --I’m Lennay, I’m alive -- he’s utterly confused. He is told some story about how she’s been in hiding from drug dealers. I know it sounds fantastical, but you have to believe me that he was very convincing the way he laid this out."
This is the part of the story that is under the most scrutiny. Jack, in his podcast today, offered a timeline that was consistent with Te'os story but a little different from what we heard tonight. Swarbrick suggested that the Dec. 6 call Manti thought was a hoax and in the weeks that followed realized the truth. Tonight Manti suggested he was confused and still didn't know for sure up until the day the story broke. This, I feel, is the only thing that doesn't totally jive but I still believe, 99.999%, that Tuiososopo is behind the whole storyline.
“This is that time when you say winning’s a choice.“
POTW 12/23-12/29, 2013
So will there be a complete transcript available at some point?
Hoping so. But that's up to ESPN to release. I haven't heard how they plan to handle that.
I just can't imagine that it will be handled well.
Thanks for the recap Dan.
Two time Poster of The Week, 2011 and 2013.
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