Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o acknowledged in an interview with Katie Couric that he briefly lied about his online girlfriend after learning she was fictitious. Portions of the conversation with Couric for her syndicated television show aired Wednesday on ABC's "Good Morning America." Te'o said he played no part in the hoax and didn't lie about the existence of Lennay Kekua, the woman he believed to be his girlfriend, until December. That's when he claims he learned of the boax when he received a call from a woman claiming she was Kekua, who Te'o thought had died of leukemia in September. "Katie, put yourself in my situation," he said. "I, my whole world, told me that she died on Sept. 12. ... Now I get a phone call on Dec. 6, saying that she's alive and then I'm going be put on national TV two days later (at the Heisman Trophy ceremony in New York). And to ask me about the same question. You know, what would you do?" Phone records appear to back up Te'o's claim that he spent hours on the phone with the woman thought to be his girlfriend, ESPN.com reported. Te'o's phone log, obtained by ESPN from a source, from May 11 to Sept. 12 show Te'o made and received more than 1,000 calls totaling more than 500 hours from the same number in the 661 area code that covers part of Los Angeles County ---The NCAA is putting its case against the University of Miami on hold while it reviews possible improper conduct within its own organization during its investigation. The NCAA said in a release on Wednesday that former enforcement staff members worked with the criminal defense attorney for Nevin Shapiro, a former Miami booster at the center of a 2011 Yahoo Sports report that claimed 72 athletes received extra benefits, to improperly obtain information through a bankruptcy proceeding that did not involve the NCAA. ---Louisville's Charlie Strong is getting a raise that could move him in the ranks of the 10 highest-paid coaches in college football. The school approved a new eight-year contract Wednesday that guarantee Strong an annual income of $3.7 million plus performance bonuses that include $1.25 million plus a $1 million annuity if he is still coach on June 30, 2015, another $1 million in 2016 and $200,000 in 2017 and 2018. Other bonuses are $50,000 for being ranked in the Top 10 and $100,000 for making a BCS bowl and $75,000 for a team GPA of 3.0 or better. ---A day after adding two new members, Conference USA unveiled a new divisional format for the 2013 season. The conference's 14 football schools will be split into seven-team East and West divisions. Each team will play eight conference games, six of those within the division. The East will include East Carolina, Florida Atlantic, Florida International, Marshall, Middle Tennessee State, Southern Mississippi and UAB, The West will consist of Louisiana Tech, North Texas, Rice, Tulane, Tulsa, UTEP and Texas-San Antonio. Conference USA confirmed Tuesday that Florida Atlantic and Middle Tennessee will join the league next season.
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