Former Saint’s Linebacker and Noter Dame star, Manti Te’o, is known by college football fans for his fantastic senior season that lead his team to a National Championship appearance. While Te’o had an outstanding college career, he is known for something much bigger. He will forever be remembered as the player who had a fictious girlfriend who supposedly died before his senior season. If you're not sure what I am talking about, hear is a little refresher.

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In 2009, Manti Te’o was contacted online by a beautiful young woman by the name of “Lennay Kekua.” They started out as close friends according to Te’o, but the two would develop a relationship over time and eventually began dating in 2011. In June of 2012, Kekua would tell Manti that she has Leukemia. In September of 2012, Te’o would get devastating news from Kekua’s brother that she had passed away from her illness just days after Manti’s grandmother passed.


Heart broken by the news of his girlfriend’s passing, Te’o would tell ESPN that he was dedicating the upcoming season to Kekua and his grandmother. The tragic story would take the college football world by storm as many showed support for the Noter Dame star.

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Te’o would go on to have an outstanding senior season where he would boast 113 tackles and 7 interceptions. He was selected as a Heisman finalist and would lead his team to the National Championship game against Alabama. An amazing run propelled by a tragic story, or so we thought.

After some digging was done, it would come out that Kekua was never real. When news broke to the media, it took the sports world by storm and Te’o received the brunt of a lot of backlash. It was later discovered that Te’o was a victim of a “catfish” scam. This would hurt his image significantly, but he was still selected in the second round by the Chargers. He would change teams a few times playing for the Saints and now the Bears. Te’o has had a pretty good career and seemed to put the whole incident behind him until now. Manti Te’o recently released a trailer to a Netflix documentary that is centered around this crazy and wild story.

This will be the first time we see Te’o publicly talk about the story in detail and how it changed his life. The two-part documentary will also feature Naya Tuiasosopo, a transgender woman who posed as Lennay Kekua. As someone who vividly remembers this bizarre story unfolding, I am excited to see this film. The documentary is set to release on August 16th, will you be watching?

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