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Whether Heisman Trophy finalist Manti Te’o was Victim or Conspirator, Notre Dame officials have entered uncharted waters
By Brad Wolverton in the Chronicle of Higher Education
Athletics leaders across the country raised questions on Thursday about the University of Notre Dame’s handling of a sensational story about how its star football player was mixed up in a bizarre hoax.
The story centers on Manti Te’o, a Heisman Trophy finalist and the impetus behind Notre Dame’s improbable run to the national-championship game. According to various news-media reports, Mr. Te’o played this past season under a heavy burden. In the span of six hours last September, the stories went, Mr. Te’o learned of the death of two important people in his life: his grandmother and his girlfriend.
The player’s perseverance through those losses, and his inspired play in leading the Fighting Irish to one nail-biting victory after another before losing its final game, made for the perfect fairy-tale script.
It turns out, however, that the girlfriend’s death was a fabrication… and officials from other universities are questioning Notre Dame’s full-throated support…