- Date of Birth:
- January 26, 1991
- 6' 2"
- Notre Dame
Manti Te’o (born Manti Malietau Louis Te’o in Laie, Hawaii on January 26, 1991) is an American college football player as a linebacker for the University of Notre Dame. As a teenager, Manti was one of the most decorated high school athletes in Hawaii’s history. In 2012, Manti won eight postseason awards, becoming the most successful collegiate football player of all time. In 2013, Manti’s career was marred by a girlfriend hoax.
Best Known For:
Manti is best known for his football career successes and the girlfriend hoax that engulfed his life in 2012-2013.
On September 11, 2012, Manti said that he suffered the loss of both his grandmother and girlfriend, Stanford student Lennay Kekua, within the span of one day. His “girlfriend” supposedly endured a car accident and died after battling leukemia. On January 16, 2013, Deadspin outed the football player as a liar, claiming the girl in question never existed. Notre Dame addressed the story on Jan. 16, claiming Manti was a victim of a Catfish-esque hoax, saying someone posed as a girl named Lennay online, fooling Manti during his relationship that was “exclusively online.” However, this contradicts previous accounts of their relationship, which say they had met after a football game and that she visited him in Hawaii.