Manti Te’o has about six more seconds before this story is no longer interesting, and he’s making good on the ticking time clock.
The star football player sat down for his first on-camera interview since news broke that his dead girlfriend, Lennay Kekua, never really existed.
During his sit-down with Katie Couric he admitted to keeping the story afloat even after finding out the truth. “Katie, put yourself in my situation,” he said. “I, my whole world told me that she died on Sept. 12. Everybody knew that. This girl, who I committed myself to, died on Sept. 12.
“Now I get a phone call on Dec. 6, saying that she’s alive and then I’m going be put on national TV two days later. And to ask me about the same question. You know, what would you do?”
Joined by both of his parents Te’o’s father blasted claims that his son failed to reveal the hoax for “personal gain,” maintaining that he’s a good person. “People can speculate about what they think he is. I’ve known him 21 years of his life. And he’s not a liar. He’s a kid.”
In related news, Diane O’Meara, the woman whose image was used as Kekua, also broke her silence, appearing on NBC’s TODAY show this morning. O’Meara went to high school with Ronaiah Tuiasosopo –the man implicated in the online scheme—and had her pictures stolen without her knowledge.
Photo: ABC News