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Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Notre Dame teammate says Manti Te’o was lying about dead girlfriend

01.17.13 at 8:08 am ET

Welcome to Thursday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

NBA: Knicks vs. Pistons, at London, 3 p.m. (NBATV)
NBA: Clippers at Timberwolves, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA: Heat at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. (TNT; WEEI-AM)
College basketball: Duquesne at UMass, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Michigan at Minnesota, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Valparaiso at Detroit, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Florida at Texas A&M, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Northwestern at Illinois, 8:15 p.m. (Big Ten Network)
College basketball: Oregon State at UCLA, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Georgia Tech at Duke, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Saint Joseph’s at VCU, 9 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: South Florida at Rutgers, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Oregon at USC, 11 p.m. (ESPNU)
College hockey: Providence at UMass-Lowell, 7 p.m. (NBCSN)


‘™¦ The Lance Armstrong interview with Oprah Winfrey hasn’t even aired yet, and already it’s been surpassed by a more shocking story from the sports world. The Manti Te’o dead girlfriend hoax was exposed by Deadspin on Wednesday, and despite claims by Notre Dame and Te’o that he was duped, the facts do not make it look good for the Heisman Trophy runner-up.

At least one Notre Dame football player was willing to speak out about the situation, albeit anonymously. Former CSNNE anchor/reporter Jackie Pepper, who now runs her own website, published an interview with a Fighting Irish player who said Te’o was caught in a bad situation that he made worse.

“He lied, but the media blew it up,” the player said.

The player claimed other teammates knew that what Te’o was doing as well, although no one ever confronted him.

“We would never bring it up,” the player said. “But we would look at him when he would get all emotional during media about his girl.”

Asked if he thought Te’o was a good actor, the player said: “Very good.”

‘™¦ Depending upon whom you believe, the USC football team either had a verbal spat or an all-out brawl in the locker room following the Trojans’ 21-7 loss to Georgia Tech in the Sun Bowl.

The brouhaha started when some freshmen questioned the leadership from the team’s seniors, with at least one player calling out quarterback Matt Barkley for missing the game with a shoulder injury.

“It was one of the worst things I’ve seen in a locker room,” an unidentified player told the Los Angeles Daily News.

Barkley downplayed the incident in an interview with ESPN Radio.

“I would say tempers flared, yeah, but that’s football,” Barkley said. “It’s an emotional game, and when you end your season on a negative note like that, emotions are going to be high. Guys were expressing their opinions, for better or worse, but we had it under control. It was nothing to be alarmed about.”

Said freshman offensive tackle Zach Banner to the Daily News: “It’s going to be a whole new family atmosphere next season, and you can quote me on that. For the seniors, it’s terrible.”

‘™¦ Knicks forward Rasheed Wallace, who returned to the NBA this season at the age of 38, is not expected to play again for a while — if at all — due to a stress reaction in his left foot. The 15-year veteran has been out since Dec. 15 and has yet to start running.

“He’ll be back — but when, I don’t know,” coach Mike Woodson said. “We’re gradually trying to get him back where he can run again so he can get back in a uniform. But when, we don’t know when yet.”

Wallace, who last played for the Celtics in 2009-10, is averaging 7.2 points and 3.2 rebounds over 14.6 minutes in 20 games.

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Jan. 17, 1970, future Red Sox standout Fred Lynn was drafted by which MLB team, refusing to sign and instead choosing to play college ball at USC?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “I’ve got an owner that looks out [for me]. You can’t beat that.” — Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony, on being taped by James Dolan during the team’s last two games

STAT OF THE DAY: 2 — Active NBA players with 20,000 points and 5,000 assists, as LeBron James joined Kevin Garnett on Wednesday (11 retired players are in the club as well)

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): The Mavericks launch a Dirk Nowitzki bobblehead 35 miles up toward space.

Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at the bobblehead’s adventure, which also shows its return to earth.


SOOTHING SOUNDS: Chris Montez was born on this day in 1943.

Read More: LeBron James, Manti Te'o, Matt Barkley, rasheed wallace