Let’s keep in mind the Manti Te’o story centers around some incredibly cruel and twisted people and an incredibly naive football player. Maybe I’m naive, but I still have a hard time believing there are people out there who find sport in deceiving a person in this way. It really makes me feel bad about society.
Did Jeremy Schaap’s interview with Te’o on the late SportsCenter last night slow down the train a bit? Perhaps.
For Schaap to say the Notre Dame linebacker came off as “credible” is beyond huge. It carries a lot of weight for one of the most respected journalists to maintain that Te’o passed the bullshit test in his eyes.
In a way, Schaap now is part of the story as the only journalist to gain access to Te’o. He has become our eyes and ears. If Schaap says Te’o is credible, the majority of us will feel the same way.
It is interesting to note that Te’o's handlers didn’t let him appear on camera for the interview. In retrospect, that appears to be a good move. It seems to have allowed the conversation to be more informal. A kitchen-table talk, if you will. It took away the pressure of Te’o having to be conscious of himself in front of a camera, although that day will come soon.
The sound bites that were released were pretty convincing. Maybe Te’o really was that naive.
For more, here’s the reaction from Deadspin.
Here’s the reaction from Big Lead.