Katie Couric’s upcoming sit-down with Notre Dame football star Manti Te’o — the Heisman Trophy runner-up currently best known for his involvement in an elaborate online hoax — should be a doozy.
Earlier today, Good Morning America premiered a short clip from the interview in which Te’o reveals that he did briefly lie to the press after learning that his beloved girlfriend, Lennay Kekua, never actually existed. As Couric disapprovingly notes, Te’o “stuck to the script” even though he knew “something was amiss” after receiving a call from someone claiming to be Kekua on Dec. 6 — despite the fact that Kekua supposedly succumbed to cancer earlier last fall.
“Katie, put yourself in my situation,” Te’o replied. “This girl, who I committed myself to, died on September 12. Now I get a phone call on December 6, saying that she’s alive, and then I’m going be put on national TV two days later. And to ask me about the same question. You know, what would you do?”
The segment also features a clip of Diane O’Meara, a 23-year-old marketing executive who told NBC’s Today on Tuesday that her photos were used by the creator of Lennay’s profile — allegedly 22-year-old Roniah Tuiasosopo, who went to high school with O’Meara — without her consent. Tuiasosopo’s former football coach appears in the video as well, telling ABC News that the apparent hoax mastermind is a good kid from a “good loving family.”
Catch the full Te’o interview tomorrow, Jan. 24 on Couric’s syndicated daytime show Katie.