Reagan Mauia, a fullback on the Arizona Cardinals, has added another layer to the impossible-to-believe Manti Te’o fake girlfriend/hoax story. He talked to ESPN:
“This was before her and Manti,” Mauia said Wednesday evening. “I don’t think Manti was even in the picture, but she and I became good friends. We would talk off and on, just checking up on each other kind of thing. I am close to her family. When she was going through the loss of her father, I was — I offered a comforting shoulder and just someone to bounce her emotions off. That was just from meeting her in Samoa.”
Mauia said Tuiasosopo — whom Mauia believes is Kekua’s cousin — introduced the two. After the initial meeting, Mauia said he met her at an “after-party” for all of the athletes involved in the camp.
“She was tall,” he said. “Volleyball-type of physique. She was athletic, tall, beautiful. Long hair. Polynesian. She looked like a model … ”
He said it is his understanding that Kekua’s mother is operating her Twitter account. He said he’d never met her mother. When told by a reporter that she apparently might not have existed, Mauia said “No, she is real.”
So she’s real? Or was real? And died? How?
Notre Dame says Te’o was duped. Te’o said he’s been the subject of an elaborate hoax. Notre Dame AD Jack Swarbrick has put his reputation on the line and gone on TV to say Te’o was duped. Deadspin searched far and wide and found no mention of her, ever.
Which leaves us … who knows where.