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Manti Te'o

Yeah I Lied

... But I Had To

1/18/2013 1:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0118-mante-teo-getty-irish
Manti Te'o is telling friends ... he knew the truth about Lennay Kekua in early December ... but continued the lie for 20 days for the sake of his team.

Sources connected to Te'o say ... it's true what ND Athletic Director Jack Swarbrick said Wednesday night, that Manti realized he had been hoaxed on Dec. 6, when he got a phone call from "Lennay" ... months after he thought she was dead.

But sources tell us ... Manti didn't tell his coaches about the hoax until Dec. 26 ... because he thought it would be a huge distraction while the team prepared to face Alabama in the BCS Championship.

During the 20 days, we're told Manti struggled over how to handle the situation ... but eventually felt compelled to come clean to his coaches.

Manti is currently training for the NFL combine -- and we're told he's getting a lot of support from the guys he's been training with.

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104 COMMENTS

No Avatar
31.

Terri    

What a dirtbag this guy is.

640 days ago
32.

QuiFree    

This dude is such a BAD LIAR!!! Stop making excuses and just admit that it was a lie from the start!!!!

640 days ago
33.

CJones    

Catfish

640 days ago
34.

the artist formerly known as hand turkey    

I haven't been following this story, but whenever I glance over the articles, I keep seeing them saying he realized he was tricked when he received a call from the "dead" girl's phone...but it's not clear if somebody was on the phone, was "she" on the phone? Did "she" speak? What did "she" say? When people die, their phones don't necessarily die with them. This explanation is suspicious.

640 days ago
35.

The Love Sponge    

Ricka Racka Fire Cracker Sis Boom Bah He's Gay He's Gay Ra! Ra! Ra! Go Manti Te'O!

640 days ago
36.

Joan K    

LOSER, LOSER, LOSER!

640 days ago
37.

WhatsUrDefinition of crazy    

Mental issues .... ????

640 days ago
38.

MrsB    

Smh...these comments r too funny

640 days ago
39.

WhatsUrDefinition of crazy    

Wow they should just call him Jan Brady. Wasn't her imaginary boy friend Andy Glass???? On that Brady bunch episode....

640 days ago
40.

Paul2281    

What a DICK...Too young to be starting his lying already in his carreer....

640 days ago
41.

nukeeseballipari    

SOMEBODY LIED! (Lil Wayne voice)

640 days ago
42.

cammy123    

Another reaason y I don't do online dating period

640 days ago
43.

Joey    

He lied and teh Mighty University of Notre Dame knew it which makes tham complicit in the lie.
bottom line is Notre Dame thinks that they are above all NCAA authority and lied to help him win the Heisman trophy.
How did thet work out d=for you ND?

640 days ago
44.

Bill Andrews    

"One of us is changing, Or maybe we just stop trying ?.. ( You was a light and breezy chick, and knew just what to say and do ? )

640 days ago
45.

GetOverYourself    

Enough of this story already. This idiot is obviously not telling the truth, and will continue to lie as long as his rapist, murdering enablers at that sh*t school continue to support him. Just get comfortable in the closet Man-whatever-the-uck-your-name-is, you should be there for a long time.

640 days ago
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