One thing is for sure. This thing has legs.
A poll on ESPN stated that 73% of people believe that Manti Te’o was involved in some way with this hoax. As Scott Van Pelt stated in response to that poll, “What does Te’o have to gain from the hoax?”
His line of thinking would have to be something like the following. My Grandma will die at some point. Then, I’ll have my fake girlfriend tragically die. After that, I’ll go out and play tremendously on the field. Not because I have worked hard in the off season but because its some heavenly miracle. Then, I will be a finalist for the Heisman Trophy because somehow I know that in September my team will be undefeated and people would accept a Defensive player.
Less than 30 minutes ago, the Twitter account @LennayKay issued a long awaited statement, “My statement: This is incredibly embarrassing to talk about, but I have been told by Alabama’s offense that Manti Te’o is not real.”
It is hard to argue with that statement based on his performance. But, it is clear that who ever is perpetrating this scam is enjoying the spotlight. People seemed baffled by the motive of individuals here. Why do hackers do what they do? Pure sport. As Alfred in reference to the Joker stated in the ‘Dark Knight’, “some men just want to watch the world burn.”
That is what we are dealing with here. A joker. An individual who’s existence in the world should breathe caution into every man and woman, not jokes. As the MTV show, “Catfish”, demonstrates you could be next.
Sympathy should be given to a young man who trusted in the goodness of the world. This notion drove Jack Swarbrick to tears last night during his press conference. If Notre Dame did not believe in Manti Te’o, they could easily throw him under the bus. One institution is bigger than one player.
Things do need to be cleared up. Everything does not add up. But, that does not incriminate an individual. There are just as many questions on the side of people who are accusing Te’o of having some involvement in this hoax. He can easily end this by holding a press conference. But, the more Te’o waits, the more the story gets out of control. The story is controlling him.
TMZ is interviewing individuals who are not even involved with the story and claiming it as gospel. The amount of normally poor journalism involved in this situation is sickening. Normally, when someone says “I read this article on Deadspin” or “I saw this thing on TMZ” people call a spade a spade. This is not ABC, CBS or NBC.
Manti Te’o. All-American Linebacker. Student-Athlete. Son. Teammate. Friend. NFL Hopeful. Victim.