Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Legend of Manti Te'o's girlfriend: a tall tale everyone wanted to believe

I knew nothing about Lennay Kekua. Was she pretty? Smart? Funny? Blonde? Brunette? Did she like football? The only thing I thought I knew was that she had died, and that Manti Te'o, the best linebacker in college football and her boyfriend, had dominated a football game for Notre Dame a couple days later.

What I didn't know, and what Te'o apparently didn't know, either, is that Lennay Kekua wasn't pretty or smart or funny or blonde or brunette or a football fan or a far-too-young leukemia victim. She didn't exist.
That much came to light Wednesday courtesy of a report. Te'o claims he became aware in December, and then says he realized he was the subject of a hoax after Notre Dame hired private investigators and computer forensic experts to figure out exactly who, or whom, Lennay Kekua was and why she pretended to die – and later come back to life.
The narrative whipsaw of a sad story turning into something far worse – a morbid, twisted tale of an Internet prank gone excessive – ignited the sports world Wednesday, and left everyone wondering whether this was really the case of a na├»ve football player done wrong by friends or a fabrication that has yet to play to its conclusion.

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