Inexplicably, Notre Dame didn’t ask linebacker Manti Te’o to produce cell phone records corroborating the contention that he spent countless hours on the phone with his fake deal girlfriend.
There likewise had been no mention of objective proof of extensive and lengthy calls in any of the reporting from ESPN.
Now, ESPN reports that a “source close to Te’o” has produced the cell phone records. Sort of.
While the online story isn’t clear, Mike Hill of SportsCenter has explained that the source didn’t produce the actual phone records but spreadsheets based on the raw data. The spreadsheets show that, from May 11 through September 12, Te’o made more than 1,000 calls to a number in the 661 area code, where Lennay Kekua supposedly lived. Of the calls, 110 lasted for more than 60 minutes.
That’s fine, but it’s meaningless without the actual records. Te’o has claimed that he spent long stretches overnight on the phone with Kekua while she slept in a hospital bed. It doesn’t matter if there are 110 calls of more than an hour in length if there isn’t a single one that lasted, say, six hours. The report from ESPN doesn’t say whether the spreadsheet sheds light on that point.
Put simply, producing anything other than the actual records serves only to raise more suspicions in a case that already has plenty of them.
The only way out of this latest maze created by Te’o's camp is to produce the records.