Lance Armstrong has a new best friend.
The day before Armstrong's interview with Oprah was set to air, the news about linebacker Manti Te'o's girlfriend dying being a hoax took the attention away from the disgraced cyclist, at least for a little while.
The news broke on Wednesday after Deadspin.com reported that it could find no record of Lennay Kekua existing. Notre Dame issued a news release following the report, saying that "the proper authorities" are investigating a "very cruel deception."
Te'o issued a statement Wednesday afternoon:
"This is incredibly embarrassing to talk about, but over an extended period of time, I developed an emotional relationship with a woman I met online. We maintained what I thought to be an authentic relationship by communicating frequently online and on the phone, and I grew to care deeply about her.
Te'o previously said that his girlfriend had inspired him to play better during the season and he helped the Irish make it to the BCS National Championship game against Alabama.
Armstrong is set to make some sort of confession about his past use of performance enhancing drugs while winning seven Tour de France races.
Armstrong has quickly gone from one of the most revered and respected athletes in the world to one of the most controversial. He was dogged by doping allegations for many years, but always fought back and claimed he was clean. Armstrong was stripped of all seven Tour titles following a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency report that portrayed him as cheater and a ruthless cyclist who would do anything to win.
USADA chief executive Travis Tygart said that the doping ring ran by Armstrong was "The most sophisticated, professionalized and successful doping program that sport has ever seen."