From Comcast SportsNetNEW YORK (AP) -- The woman whose photo was used as the "face" of the Twitter account of Manti Te'o's supposed girlfriend says the man allegedly behind the hoax confessed and apologized to her.Diane O'Meara told NBC's "Today" show Tuesday that Ronaiah Tuiasosopo used pictures of her without her knowledge in creating a fake woman called Lennay Kekua. Te'o asserts he was tricked into an online romance with Kekua and, until last week, did not understand he was being hoaxed.O'Meara went to high school in California with Tuiasosopo, but she says they're not close. He called to apologize Jan. 16, the day Deadspin.com broke the hoax story, she said."I don't think there's anything he could say to me that would fix this," said O'Meara, a 23-year-old marketing executive in Los Angeles.O'Meara said she had never had any contact with Te'o, and that for five years, Tuiasosopo "has literally been stalking my Facebook and stealing my photos."Tuiasosopo has not spoken publicly since the news broke. His family has said they may speak out this week.Te'o did an off camera interview with ESPN last week and is scheduled to appear on appear with his parents on Katie Couric's syndicated talk show Thursday.
FOXBORO -- Patriots left tackle Nate Solder has been through a lot over the last few years.
He battled and beat testicular cancer before the 2014 offseason and then went on to help the Patriots to their fourth Super Bowl title. In 2015, he tore his biceps in Week 5 and spent the rest of the year on injured reserve. Just weeks later after suffering that season-ending injury, Solder's son, Hudson, was diagnosed with a Wilms' tumor in his kidneys.
A quiet leader in the Patriots locker room, Solder has used his platform with the team to spread awareness stemming from personal hardships in addition to serving as a prominent supporter of the Hockomock Area YMCA. For his devotion to helping those in need, and for the example he sets at his job and in the community, he has been named the team's Ed Block Courage Award winner for 2016.
Solder also participated in the NFL's My Cause My Cleats initiative wearing cleats to raise awareness for the Joe Andruzzi Foundation, which gives financial aid to cancer patients and their families. He also supports The Fresh Truck, which describes itself as a mobile food market on a mission to radically improve community health.
Rob Gronkowski, Sebastian Vollmer, Marcus Cannon, Jerod Mayo, Logan Mankins, Wes Welker and Tedy Bruschi have also recently been named Ed Block Courage Awards-winners for the Patriots.
The team's training staff, led by head trainer Jim Whalen and assistant trainer and director of rehabilitation Joe Van Allen, was also honored on Tuesday as it was named the 2016 Ed Block Courage Award NFL Athletic Training Staff of the Year.
"The annual award, named for the longtime head athletic trainer for the Baltimore Colts who demonstrated an untiring dedication to helping others, recognizes an NFL staff for their distinguished service to their club, community and athletic training profession," the Patriots announced in a statement.
In the release, trainer Daryl Nelson and physical therapist Michael Akinbola are also credited with helping keep the Patriots healthy.
Others, including head strength and conditioning coach Moses Cabrera and team nutritionist Ted Harper, have a hand in keeping players at their physical peak. Combined, given the overall health of the roster this season, they've all had a hand in keep the team humming as it heads into its sixth consecutive AFC title game.