Speaking in front of the largest group of reporters he's faced since it was revealed that his girlfriend, Lennay Kekua, never actually existed, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o talked about the lessons he's learned from the online hoax.
"To keep your circle very small. To really understand who's really in your corner and who's not," he said at the NFL Combine on Saturday. "I just learned to appreciate the people that I have, that are with me."
Te'o opened up the press conference by saying that the hoax was "embarrassing." But he also said that if he was still embarrassed he wouldn't have shown up at the Combine, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.
Tom Pelissero of 1500ESPN.com was one of many to tweet a picture of how many reporters were there.
This is what Manti Te'o is going to be looking at. twitter.com/TomPelissero/s…
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) February 23, 2013
Te'o, who in the days leading up to the Combine said he didn't think the hoax would affect his draft stock, tried his best to move on to football.
"What I bring to the table is a lot of heart, a lot of energy, and somebody who works hard," said Te'o, via the Baltimore Ravens' official Twitter account. He also said he had met with the Houston Texans and Green Bay Packers, while mentioning he has 18 more meetings lined up this week, per Albert Breer.
More from the Associated Press:
INDIANAPOLIS -- Manti Te'o wants everyone to know he's over the embarrassment of an online hoax, and he's ready to focus on football.
The Heisman Trophy runner-up acknowledges he could have done things to avoid a public spectacle. But he says if he was still embarrassed by it, he wouldn't have taken questions Saturday at the NFL's annual scouting combine.
Instead, nearly two dozen television cameras and a room full of reporters were capturing every word out of Te'o's mouth as he again tried to explain how he was duped into believing a girlfriend that never existed died last fall.
It was the largest group of reporters Te'o has faced since the story broke last month
More than 300 players, including Te'o, are in Indy this weekend to work out for NFL scouts.