Offensive linemen and tight ends worked out on the field at the NFL Combine today, but much of the media frenzy taking place in Indianapolis, Ind., centered on the media room where Manti Te’o, the beleaguered Notre Dame linebacker stood and to podium to answer questions about his national news-breaking past, though his focus was centered on what he can do on the football field.
Te’o told reporters Saturday that while he was embarrassed by the fact that his family had to sneak into their own home during the national feeding frenzy a couple months ago, he was putting it behind himself and was ready to focus on football.
“It got overwhelming at times. I’m just looking forward to getting straight to football. I understand people have questions, but I think I’ve answered everything I could. I’d really like to talk about football,” Te’o said.
If you’re not familiar with Te’o’s story (have you been under a rock?) the Heisman Trophy runner-up was duped into believing he was dating a woman that didn’t exist and also believed that the fictitious woman had died during last season.
When asked about the incident at Saturday’s press conference, Te’o said, “I’ve learned to be honest in everything you do. And to keep your circle small and know who’s in your corner and who’s not.” He added, “It’s only going to make me stronger.”
“They’ve told me that they’ve all just wanted to hear from me what the truth was. They haven’t really said anything about it affecting me … [we] briefly described it for 30 seconds, and the next 14 minutes was about plays and getting down to business,” Te’o said about the early interviews.
Here’s Chris Mortenson’s reaction to Te’o’s press conference today: