Manti Te’o — of dead-girlfriend-hoax fame — gave his first tell-all (lie-all?) since the hoax hit the fan, speaking on Katie Couric’s show this afternoon.
Here’s a breakdown of what he said. Do you believe this guy?
1. “I Didn’t Really Have a Relationship with Ronaiah”
Te’o claimed that Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, the man behind the “hoax,” was Lennay’s (the fake girlfriend) cousin and that he didn’t really have a relationship with him. He claims they met once and did speak briefly but didn’t really talk any more than that.
2. “My Biggest Regret is that I Lied to my Dad”
Couric asked if he had any regrets and Manti answered that the only regret he really had was lying to his father when he asked him if he had ever met Lennay. Manti told his dad that he did her but admitted to Couric that he lied about that.
3. “The Pain I went Through Was Real. The Feelings, the Pain, the Sorrow”
Manti says that although he was duped, the pain he felt for Lennay at the time was real. He did think she was a real person and the feelings he had towards her were very real.
4. Katie: “Are You Technologically Challenged?”
Couric questioned how Te’o could have possibly been Face-Timing with Lennay yet never actually saw her face. Manti said that whenever they would talk there would be a black box where her camera would be so he was never able to see her. He assumed it was just a problem with the camera.
[poll id="63"]5. Katie: “Are You Gay?”
Manti: “No. Far from it. Faaaaaaar from it.”
There were questions of Te’o’s sexuality over the past few weeks. Many thought that Manti’s was a cover up for homosexual relationship he was having. Manti dispelled those rumors. But did he protest too much?
6. “She Would Give Me Good Reasons”
That was Manti’s response when Katie asked why whenever he would ask to meet up she would never end up meeting with her. He claimed that they tried to meet up several times both in California and Hawaii but kept having to cancel last second.
7. Katie: “That’s a Two-Hours Layover. That Doesn’t Make Sense to Me”
Manti: “It doesn’t makes sense to me either at this point… It was a conversation I didn’t want to have with my parents”
Katie questioned the timeline of Te’o after an alleged car accident that Kekua was in. Couric asked why he didn’t drive down to the hospital to visit her after the accident. He claimed she was taken to a hospital that was two hours away from Te’o yet he said he didn’t make an effort to go down and see her. Te’o said that he didn’t really know why he didn’t make an effort to go visit her but did say that one possible reason was that he didn’t want to have that “conversation” with his parents.
8. “Sounds Like a Girl, Doesn’t It?”
Manti’s response after Katie played voicemails that Lennay left for Manti. It is now known that those voicemails were left by a male who disguised his voice.
9. Katie: “People are Calling Your Child a Liar”
Manti’s mom: “It Hurts, That is my Child Out There. He Always Puts Others Before Himself. I’m Proud of his Character.”
Manti’s parents sat in with Katie toward the end of the interview. They seemed to be just as confused about the situation as everyone else is.
10. “The Hardest Part of the Experience is Seeing my Family go Through It.”
Manti claims to be sorry about what happened but is most sorry about what he put his family through.