January 17, 2013

BLOG: Te'o hoax an embarrassment to all involved

— With one long, well-researched article, the sports news website dealt huge blows to the reputations of Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o and sports journalists across the country.

Published Wednesday afternoon, the 4,000-word article details how the story of Te’o’s girlfriend Lennay Kekua, who reportedly died within hours of his grandmother in September, was not a real person.

As it turns out, Te’o never met Kekua, despite comments from him and his family over the last year that suggested otherwise. She was merely an online personality, and the relationship played out completely on Twitter.

Despite an article written by the South Bend Tribune detailing how the two met after a game between Notre Dame and Kekua’s alleged school, Stanford, there are no records of anyone by that name ever being at Stanford, or of anyone with that name who died. And the South Bend Tribune was far from the only publication that bought into the story of Te’o’s relationship. Newspapers and other media outlets across the country reported it as fact.

After that, it’s unclear what is true and what is not. The Deadspin article suggests, and presents some evidence for the assertion that Te’o was involved in the hoax in an attempt to gain publicity. Te’o and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick each said Wednesday that Te’o was the victim.

We may never know for sure. If Te’o was involved, he’s a disturbed person with much less moral character than the man we’ve seen paraded on ESPN over the last few months. If he somehow got tricked into thinking he was in a serious relationship with a woman he never met in person, then he’s more foolish and naïve than I can easily imagine.

Regardless of the other details, the situation is embarrassing. It’s embarrassing to Te’o and his family, it’s embarrassing to Notre Dame, and it’s embarrassing to every member of the media who perpetuated the story of Te’o’s relationship without taking a little time to make sure it was actually true.

It’s also a shocking reminder of the cliché we so often neglect; don’t believe everything you hear.

Text Only
  • BLOG: Energy FC launches soccer saturation attempt

    It’s always been a dream of mine to cover a professional soccer match, ever since I decided sports journalism was my career path.

    April 26, 2014

  • BLOG: America is doing all it can to Russia

    The conservative response to President Obama's handling of the Ukraine crisis is a perfect example of what some Americans need to learn about how the world around them works now.

    March 21, 2014

  • BLOG: Recent films aim to stir rebellion in youth

    Typically I'm not much for conspiracy theories, but I think I've developed a good one. 

    March 21, 2014

  • BLOG: It's time for the city to fully fund a neuter program

    Chickasha has a big city problem.
    It'd be hard to dispute that stray animals roam the town's streets in droves. They occupy neighborhoods, school yards, business locations, basically anywhere they might find some nosh. 

    March 19, 2014 1 Story

  • BLOG: Staples policy of silence bad for business

    Staples announced they're closing 225 stores this week, but no one seems to have any idea what the Chickasha's location fate will be.
    Actually, let me rephrase. No one wants to discuss it.

    March 7, 2014

  • V_for_Vendetta_by_Rub_a_Duckie.jpg BLOG: Film enhances sense of patriotism

    I love today.
    Every year, I have a quiet evening at home with a healthy meal, some wine and a screening of a film that touts true patriotism.
    Today is the day that shall never be forgot. It's the fifth of November.

    November 5, 2013 1 Photo

  • Vladimir_Putin-6.jpg BLOG: Putin's hypocrisy is unbearable

    It strikes me as odd that of all countries, Russia is the one advocating "dialogue" and "peace" when it comes to the Syrian problem.

    September 18, 2013 1 Photo

  • BLOG: National media distorting real issues in Duncan tragedy

    So I was putting the final touches on the weekend edition of the paper while listening to CNN, when my blood pressure began to sky rocket. 

    Literally minutes after the Stephens County District Attorney - and our district attorney for that matter - Jason Hicks sent out a release detailing why the murder of Australian baseball player Chris Lane was not a hate crime, but old CNN decided that wasn't good for ratings. 

    August 23, 2013

  • 0821-Oklahoma-shooting-Christopher-Lane_full_380.jpg BLOG: Main issue remains untouched in Duncan shooting

    So, now we know the three obviously lost teenagers involved in the Duncan shooting of an innocent Australian baseball player were not officially involved in a gang.

    August 23, 2013 1 Photo

  • BLOG: TEA Party visit sparks revelation

    I don't really go to church, and there are a few reasons why.

    The main reason resonated with me  when I went to the TEA Party meeting last Friday. 

    August 7, 2013