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Dr. Saturday

Ronaiah Tuiasosopo tells Dr. Phil he believes Te’o hoax was a ‘romantic’ relationship

Dr. Saturday

The Manti Te'o story is nearing its merciful conclusion, and one of the final pieces of the story is now fitting into place.

In an interview with Dr. Phil scheduled to air Thursday and Friday, Ronaiah Tuiasosopo, the mastermind of the hoax that ensnared Te'o for several years, spoke publicly for the first time about a story that has captured national attention and admitted that he fell "deeply, romantically in love" with Te'o over the course of the scam.

"I asked him, straight up, was this a romantic relationship with you?" Dr. Phil McGraw said on NBC's Today. "And he says, 'yes.' I then said, are you then, therefore, gay? He says, 'Well, when you put it that way, yes.' And then, he caught himself and said, 'I am confused.'"

[Related: PETA exploits Manti Te'o situation to promote fake meat]

However, Tuiasosopo emphatically denied that Te'o was in any way involved with the scam. He noted that while Te'o and "Lennay Kekua" would "break up," Tuiasosopo himself would find a way to reunite them: "There were many times where Manti and Lennay had broken up, but something would bring them back together, whether it was something going on in his life or in Lennay's life, in this case in my life."

Tuiasosopo still contends that it's his voice on the famous voicemail recordings, not a cousin. That may be the only mystery still left in this story, one which has now reached its natural end.

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