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saxfanatic 1
Should there be a link somewhere in that blog post? I'm lost.
Posted by saxfanatic on January 16, 2013 at 5:35 PM · Report this
DOUG. 2
He's either gay or an asshole. Let's hope it's the former.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on January 16, 2013 at 5:36 PM · Report this
biffp 3
Or he likes the attention and drama.
Posted by biffp on January 16, 2013 at 5:37 PM · Report this
biffp 4
cray cray
Posted by biffp on January 16, 2013 at 5:38 PM · Report this
merry 5
Or he fell for someone online whom he had no reason to suspect was being untruthful.....
Posted by merry on January 16, 2013 at 5:40 PM · Report this
Free Lunch 6
@1 - I think he's referring to this. But I have no idea what's going on in that video.
Posted by Free Lunch on January 16, 2013 at 5:43 PM · Report this
saxfanatic 7
@6: Thanks for the link. It's clear to me now.
Posted by saxfanatic on January 16, 2013 at 5:48 PM · Report this
8
Hehehehehehehe.
Posted by Chicago Fan on January 16, 2013 at 5:48 PM · Report this
9
Dan, you need to watch both the documentary, Catfish and then the MTV series. People fall in love with a promise every day on the Internet. Doesn't make them gay or attention seekers or anything else. Just makes them vulnerable, like we all are from time to time.
Posted by I Got Nuthin' on January 16, 2013 at 5:56 PM · Report this
blip 10
@9 While we are making recommendations, you should read the article. His father is quoted as saying he met up with her in Hawaii.
Posted by blip on January 16, 2013 at 6:12 PM · Report this
Sandiai 11
From the article I gathered he was having a thing with another (male) football player: Ronaiah Tuiasosopo. That's why he made up so much of the story of the girlfriend. He lied and said they had met several times and that they talked on the phone for hours on end. And that his girlfriend loved him. Straight bonafides established.

He most definately knew who he was talking to when he was talking to Tuiasosopo. And Tuiasosopo helped with the lie by getting a picture of another pretty female friend of his (who looked like Te'o's fake girlfriend) holding a sign with the fake girlfriend's initials/hashtag and gave it to Te'o for Te'o to post on his Facebook page.

I mean, why make up so much of the relationship, including them being together at times IRL? Oh, and then when the heat was on, he killed her off.
Posted by Sandiai on January 16, 2013 at 6:36 PM · Report this
12
That would be so awesome. For you non-Sportsballers, this guy was the most fearsome college linebacker in a long time, and was second in the voting for the Heisman, an award a pure defensive player has never won. He will still be drafted very high and if he comes out, he could have a Jackie Robinson effect in the NFL. It's time. It would be huge.
Posted by DawginExile on January 16, 2013 at 6:44 PM · Report this
13
@12 Somehow I don't see someone this lying and delusional becoming a gay Jackie Robinson.
Posted by Clayton on January 16, 2013 at 7:03 PM · Report this
14
13 - yeah, I almost gave that caveat - but as an out star player? That would be big, and many players would support him. Right now - he is a 22yr old caught up in a big lie. Not the first.
Posted by DawginExile on January 16, 2013 at 7:06 PM · Report this
15
Personally going to hold off my speculation either way. Not really comfortable outing someone like that who personally hasn't made a statement about homosexuality.

Just seems wrong is all.

Posted by caltrop_head on January 16, 2013 at 7:15 PM · Report this
DOUG. 16
If he is gay, I'll cut Te'o some slack for the deception. Jackie Robinson never had to tell his parents he was black.
Posted by DOUG. http://www.dougsvotersguide.com on January 16, 2013 at 7:42 PM · Report this
17
I believe his dad claimed to have spoken with the girl on the phone, which would suggest that the family was in on the hoax. I thought the whole story was created in order to enhance his chances of getting the Heisman (it was all very dramatic, with her dying of cancer right before the big game, which he played in despite his grief...kind of sounds like the plot of an old Ronald Reagan movie).
Posted by alexandria on January 16, 2013 at 8:22 PM · Report this
seatackled 18
His grandmother died in September, so he could certainly have been emotionally vulnerable and easy to exploit.

Here he claims to have talked to someone over the phone, but never have met her. It could be as Dan suggests, but regardless, there are any number of embarrassing things that could have happened--maybe he did meet a woman claiming to be girlfriend--so I imagine people are reluctant to tell more than they must.
http://www.sfgate.com/sports/college/art…
Posted by seatackled on January 16, 2013 at 8:40 PM · Report this
DiveTurnWork 19
When I was closeted and living in the South (20 years ago), I invented a girlfriend because my co-workers kept asking so many questions about my dating life and activities over the weekend. After a year, the story had become so complicated and the lies so hard to remember that I had to kill her. So, she "died" in a tragic car wreck. Amusingly and without my asking, my manager came to me and gave me 5 days of bereavement leave. I used that week to fly to CA & look for another job. Found one and moved the fuck out of the South. No regrets and never looked back.
Posted by DiveTurnWork on January 16, 2013 at 9:04 PM · Report this
20
@19 Good story, bro. (Kidding!)

This is so funny. I didn't catch the gay subtext. I thought he was just a compulsive liar looking for sympathy and glory. But who knows?

It certainly is delicious to see the Big Time media get snookered like this.
Posted by floater on January 16, 2013 at 9:49 PM · Report this
21
Oh, and Free Lunch, thanks for the link, WHICH DAN SHOULD HAVE INCLUDED IN HIS POST!
Posted by floater on January 16, 2013 at 9:54 PM · Report this
Looking For a Better Read 22
@2: Not necessarily an either/or situation.
Posted by Looking For a Better Read on January 16, 2013 at 10:44 PM · Report this
Ballard Pimp 23
She is waiting for him on the planet Kholrabi, where she has grown a penis and will join the other trans-sister-wives.
Posted by Ballard Pimp on January 16, 2013 at 10:46 PM · Report this
OutInBumF 24
Oh the joys of Twitter, Facebook and cyberspace relationships. You can be anybody, in love with anybody you make up and even have them die and get bereavement leave. All without one single disagreement, fart or belch. If you're caught, make up another lie about a vicious hoax.
Sounds like relationships in the 21st century. Or perhaps a reality TV show? We're doomed.
Posted by OutInBumF on January 16, 2013 at 11:28 PM · Report this
emma's bee 25
Anyone else reminded of this?
Posted by emma's bee on January 17, 2013 at 5:31 AM · Report this
26
Prediction: Teo will become the first out player in the CFL.
Hope: That Teo will play so well in Canadian that an NFL team will bring him onto their roster.
Posted by Ptyghm on January 17, 2013 at 6:06 AM · Report this
Sir Vic 27
@20 That's not a compulsive liar, that's a pathological liar.

This wasn't a "youthful mistake". This was a year long pattern of lies, increasingly fantastical, designed to make him look like a hero and/or not a queer. When you watch his TV interviews about his "girlfriend" with the benefit of hindsight, you see a sociopath, not some duped loser.

Notre Dame has a well documented history of covering up the crimes of their football stars, so their statements should be met with a skeptical mind. They knew about this 2 weeks before the most hyped football game in a decade, and yet it didn't leak? Bullshit.
Posted by Sir Vic on January 17, 2013 at 6:14 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 28
It does seem he was in on an elaborate lie.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on January 17, 2013 at 7:10 AM · Report this
DAVIDinKENAI 29
Thanks for the link.

To paraphrase the New Yorker cartoon, "On the internet, nobody knows that you're a closeted drama queen."

Until everyone does.
Posted by DAVIDinKENAI on January 17, 2013 at 9:16 AM · Report this
Posted by Rob in Baltimore http://www.wishbookweb.com/ on January 17, 2013 at 10:09 AM · Report this
31
A simpler explanation IF he lied about having a girlfriend: He's a (mormon) virgin in a locker room culture of misogyny. "I have a girlfriend...who died." No more pressure from teammates to gangbang a drugged co-ed.
Posted by tiny frogs on January 17, 2013 at 10:58 AM · Report this
32
Mormon... football player... catholic school: you can see why he might do this. But no matter how fast he is or high he jumps, this story is going to do him a lot of damage, and raises some pretty big questions about his own stability. I hope somewhere in that perfect storm of intolerance is an actual support network.
Posted by podcaf on January 17, 2013 at 11:34 AM · Report this
33
@6: The video is a song from Avenue Q.

@31: I think that's entirely possible, and that the claims to have met her reflected "um I know it's lame that I haven't talked to her face to face, so I'll say I have."

He was either really naive to believe she was real (people dramatically fake dying on the internet is a real thing), or really naive to believe no one would dig into the story when he was up for a Heisman. I don't see how anyone claims he was obviously naive enough for the latter and not the former. From here, I can't see which of the half dozen or so possible versions is real, but some deep naivete is involved in all of them.

I will say this: the way this story apparently took off reflects an unhealthy obsession with dead female love interests as motivators for male heroes. I feel about this like I feel about everyone posting that Winona on Justified should be killed off so Raylan can go all "this time it's personal."

The story is more that people found this story important and interesting. Football player has girlfriend? Really?
Posted by IPJ on January 17, 2013 at 11:36 AM · Report this
34
@33: Dead on re: dead female love interests/male heroes. I was actually just this moment writing to Paul Constant that this seems to be comics' Women in Refrigerators problem played out in real-life's sports journalism.
Posted by PEM on January 17, 2013 at 11:47 AM · Report this
35
@9:

You know, if I was a college football player in college (not that I went to a college that even had any sports teams), I wouldn't have had to have long distance relationships. And just as importantly, I know from having lots of long distance relationships, that I can think of better ways to waste my life away. Like having several meaningful relationships with the college girls lined up outside my fictional-college-football-playing-self's door.
Posted by gromm on January 17, 2013 at 2:11 PM · Report this
36
Gay is one possible answer. The fact that he is Mormon is another. Mormons have all sorts of crazy chastity rules. Just read what it is like to be a student at BYU for an idea. He could have found an online relationship easier to reconcile with following his religious rules controlling chastity than an in person girlfriend who would have been perhaps too overpoweringly tempting.

Now, if he hadn't been a Mormon or really religious, I would agree that gay seems overwhelmingly likely. It still is probably the most likely answer, but there is enough reason to think there is an alternate explanation that I would hesitate to jump to conclusions.
Posted by Learned Hand on January 17, 2013 at 9:10 PM · Report this
37
Until Dan tweeted and blogged this, I just couldn't figure it out-- nothing made sense with this. Now, though, everything just clicks into place-- why his male friend, of all people, would organize the hoax, why he'd be on the phone for hours (supposedly with a female accomplice of his male friend perpetrating the hoax? huh?), why his friend's female friend would volunteer to be in the pictures, why the girlfriend would need to be killed off right after his grandma died (clearly she wasn't going to be able to go to his grandma's funeral).

Not that it couldn't have been a hoax on him-- I could totally imagine a young man falling for it; I had a long-distance relationship myself in college, you get used to the idea that the phone is your relationship (but I did, you know, see her in person during the breaks and videochat). But the motives of the other people weren't making sense. Until now.
Posted by Liam3851 on January 18, 2013 at 4:01 AM · Report this

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