Photographer on being in room with Te’o: “Is he going to be in here the whole time?”

More inside info on Jeremy Schaap’s interview with Manti Te’o. This time from the photographer.

Ryan Jones, writing a first-person piece on, details the experience of getting the call and then being in the room when Schaap did the interview. He wasn’t there for long. He writes:

Jeremy led the way back into the conference room, followed by Shawn and myself. After a quick introduction and shaking Te’o’s hand, I had just enough time to adjust my camera’s settings and fire off three shots before the interview began.

“Is the photographer going to be in here the whole time?” Te’o asked.

That was my cue to leave. I was in shock and utterly terrified. I left the room wondering just how badly I ruined the night by only managing to grab three mediocre photos and started praying that I’d have a chance to redeem myself by the time this thing ended.

Jones did get another chance to take more photos as the interview wound down a couple of hours later. Then he writes about a surreal experience: watching the ESPN report with Te’o.

Not long after the final images were turned over to ESPN, I had the chance to relax as Shawn ordered pizza around midnight and I was able to start my attempt at wrapping my mind around what exactly happened over the last 8 hours. With Te’o and his attorney in the conference room down the hall, Jeremy and Shawn left me in the lobby to unwind with a medium pepperoni pizza all to myself as they went outside to get ready for the live post-interview broadcast. Also, I am both proud and ashamed to admit that I ate nearly all of that pizza by myself; I thankfully managed to convince Te’o to take a slice as he walked by and back toward the conference room.

I believe it was around 12:45 a.m. when I heard a voice from the down the hall, inviting me in to watch the live coverage that was happening just outside the building. It was simply uncanny; there I was, eating pizza with Manti Te’o while watching Jeremy on ESPN giving one of the most impressive breaking news story rundowns I’ve ever witnessed.

By the way, Jones is a journalism student at the University of Florida. A friend tweeted:

“didn’t believe it when I saw it but thoroughly impressed man. Can’t pass reporting but can get a photo on ESPN.”

So let’s see: One of the Deadspin reporters of the original story, Jack Dickey, is a student at Columbia, and the photographer for the pictures seen around the U.S. also is a college student.

Yep, the business really is getting younger. Wish I had those opportunities when I was in school.





Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *