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Manti Te'o

Notre Dame's Story

Sinks Manti

1/17/2013 3:27 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

0117_mate_tao_getty
Manti Te'o continued to tell people his girlfriend died of cancer even after he learned it was all a big hoax ... and this is according to Notre Dame's public version of the facts.

During a news conference Wednesday night, ND Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick said ... Manti told ND officials that he first learned the whole thing was a hoax when he received a call from his GF's phone number during an ESPN award show in December ... months after she was presumed dead.

The ESPN college football awards ceremony took place in Orlando on Dec. 6 -- but just two days later, on Dec. 8, Te'o gave a statement to reporters in anticipation of the Heisman Trophy ceremony, in which he continued to perpetuate the belief that his girlfriend had died from cancer.

Te'o told reporters ... “I don’t like cancer at all. I lost both my grandparents and my girlfriend to cancer,” this according to WSBT-TV. 

We now know Manti's statement wasn't true -- and by Notre Dame's own account, Manti lied.

It begs the question -- what else did he lie about?

For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
118 COMMENTS

No Avatar
16.

I am Spartacus    

Dude got played HARD and was embarrassed.

552 days ago
17.

sonnfish    

What about that girl "Pookah" that also supposedly then got lupus? WTF is going on here? Does anyone live in the real world anymore? I know its hard and it sucks most the time....so we just make **** up? That girl in the picture (Pookah) is the real victim here.

552 days ago
18.

The Big Bowowski    

Seriously, doesn't TMZ stand for Thirty Mile Zone? Must be a slow day in the gossip biz when you're focusing so much attention on a Notre Dame football player.Who really gives a crap? Now if this story was about Matt Barkley or Robert Woods, then you might have something. FIGHT ON!

552 days ago
19.

I am Spartacus    

And there's a 2 day gap there so he finds out shocking news, is confused, doesn't know what to believe and probably needed to confirm what was going on before he decided to just flip his story.

552 days ago
20.

Mike    

I can't imagine WHY he would be going around telling everyone about his supposedly sick girlfriend anyway. I would tend to keep that kind of stuff private and only talk about it around friends and family.

Does he just like getting sympathy from people or something? Does he want everyone to think he's a good Mormon guy ... like Tebow's devout evangelical Christianity?

Did he think it might help move him up higher in the NFL draft if he had a sad story from his personal life? Something is definitely fishy here.

552 days ago
21.

mocha2009    

OK! Finally, it's starting to make a little sense to me. I couldn't figure out who really gives a crap and why is this all over TMZ and the internet. I'm a little behind because I've really just been ignoring most of the stories. They are trying to say he was trying to garner sympathy because he was up for the Heinsman Trophy? That's the only reason I could see why the media is making such a big deal out of this bizarre story.

552 days ago
22.

sophiastormy    

Sounds like a movie... soap opera

552 days ago
23.

YO71    

This is the best story TMZ has every followed !!!
I'm on the edge of my seat waiting to hear more.
Crazy but fun

552 days ago
24.

Mike    

I just cannot understand why a star football player is trying to find a girlfriend on the internet when there were probably dozens and dozens of women right there on the Notre Dame campus who would go out with him.

It's a Catholic school, so there might have been plenty of super nice, virgin, debutante type girls for him to choose from if that's his "type".

552 days ago
25.

barcham    

I don't know, call me crazy, but most guys have usually met and spent time with a lady before they call her their girlfriend.

552 days ago
26.

IloveUsherRaymondiv    

Maybe he is mentally ill? Is he Samoan or something?

552 days ago
27.

AlwaysOnTimeB    

This story has blown up way bigger than it should have. Maybe he got caught up in the momentum of the story, and was too embarrassed to admit he was had.

552 days ago
28.

tgrfan42069    

lets say he was dupped..i would have done the same.i mean you have for months thought the person was dead.then out the blue get a call from someone claiming to be the person and saying they werent real.i mean id prob want to see what was going on before i spouted.i mean for all he knows the caller could have been bull ****ting him about the person being alive.its not like it was weeks later.it was only a couple of days later.

552 days ago
29.

Denver    

So this woman never existed and therefore could not have been his girlfriend, or a girlfriend who died but
we still hear that once he learned it was a hoax he continued to lie? Um, huh? Does he have the same advisor as Lance?

552 days ago
30.

Kumbaya    

It's. really embarrassing to admit you only know so done from online. So if he was lying about her, it was only because they never met in real life. It happens all the time nowadays. You meet online and the other person makes excuses for why they can't Video chat or meet you.

552 days ago
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