Manti Te’o and Lance Armstrong are all over the news for their scandals. Though different (one talks to Katie Couric, the other to Oprah), each of these extraordinary athletes stooped to low levels in order to make their story a heroic tale of overcoming adversity.
Lance Armstrong overcame real adversity (cancer) falsely, by doping himself into prime cycling condition. Manti Te’o is either one of the must gullible suckers alive, or, more realistically, someone who overcame fake adversity (his made-up girlfriend’s post-car crash death from cancer).
Car crash and leukemia. Manti Te’o and/or Ronaiah Tuiasosopo were cooking up catastrophe by adding fake cancer to fake injury. That poor non-existent woman, she never had a chance. We may never know if Ronaiah Tuiasosopo is a co-conspirator (most likely), super-bully (less likely) or Te’o’s boyfriend (Te’o is Mormon and plenty of Mormons love the closet, as do athletes), but it doesn’t really matter because people will eventually realize that this story is not worth any further investigation.
By the way, it’s a bit unfortunate that Manti Te’o can’t be with his perfect match, the most fake actual real person the public knows, Kim Kardashian. But Manti’s name doesn’t start with a “K” so he does not qualify to be part of the KKK (Kunty Kardashian Klan). Though I’m sure Kris Jenner could manufacture a lot of tabloid stories for a couple she’d tell the media to call, “Kimti.” Back to the point…Manti Te’o and Lance Armstrong probably wanted be labelled as role models and heroes, be an inspiration to the children. They were horrible, yeah, but it was for the children!
These guys would have no pedestal to be put on if the sports media (I’m looking at you, ESPN) didn’t go crazy over human interest stories related to athletics and merely did their job by covering sports.
Even though there’s plenty of drama in the games themselves, the sports media (and really the media in general) just loves overcoming adversity stories. TV producers can’t get enough of being the puppeteer, pulling on viewers’ heart strings. It’s why singing competitions spend more time on contestant’s back-stories than on their auditions. Sports is no different. It’s not enough to just be really good at football (unless you’re Tom Brady or Brett Favre), or really good at cycling (no examples because it’s cycling), you have to have defeated all odds to be worthy of praise.
And that’s what these guys want, right? They want to help others, but in the selfish way of being praised for their accomplishments – oh, and sure their accomplishments were embellished by cheating and lying, but neither had a problem with that while they were basking in the limelight. So what each of these guys actually did was achieve the universal sports goal: win. They each wanted to be loved, admired and worshiped by the public via the same media that would oust them later, and by reaching into the depths of their lack of souls, they got that attention, if only for one season or fifteen years.
Also posted on PlayerPress