Posted February 05, 2013

Forbes: Manti Te’o, Lance Armstrong are America’s Most Disliked Athletes

Uncategorized
Lance Armstrong mustered just 15% appeal in a Forbes survey. (Garbriel Bouys/Getty Images)

Lance Armstrong mustered just 15% appeal in a Forbes survey. (Garbriel Bouys/Getty Images)

Manti Te’o and Lance Armstrong, the subjects of recent major sports controversies, have now landed at the top of a dubious list: America’s Most Disliked Athletes.

Released by Forbes, Te’0 and Armstrong each appeal to just 15% of the public to tie as the top disliked athlete, based on public surveys conducted by Nielsen Sports and E-Poll, a market research firm.

Te’o, the victim of an online “catfish” girlfriend hoax, later admitted perpetuating her fake story to national media, including the fact that she had not died on the same day as his grandmother during the 2012 Notre Dame season. According to Forbes, Te’0 enjoyed an 88% appeal before the BCS title game, only to see it drop to 15% “nearly overnight.”

“The story was just so creepy,” Stephen Master, senior vice president of sports at Nielsen says. “And even when he knew he’d been duped he stuck with the story for awhile, and he’d told people he had met the woman in person.”

Armstrong, after years of denying and even suing those who accused him of using illegal doping and using performance-enhancing drugs, eventually admitted that he cheated while winning seven Tour de France titles. His admissions to Oprah Winfrey did not improve his profile among sports fans, many of whom found him to lack remorse.

“The Oprah interview hurt him, he came off as pompous, arrogant and unapologetic,” Master says.


7 comments
Action
Action

Te'o lied, but I think most people understand that a 22 year old can make a mistake.  He'll have a chance to redeem himself if he succeeds in the NFL.  If he's drafted by the Jets, not so much.

Fifilo
Fifilo

Really? Te'o is a sad case, but Armstrong is a disgusting cheater. liar, and bully. Mot remotely close. A mosquito vs. a vampire.

Raj Babar
Raj Babar

they're not comparing the two. it's just that their stories came out relatively close to one another. lance armstrong committed fraud. manti te'o is a kid who dealt with the rug being pulled from underneath. i hardly understand the anti-te'o sentiment. seriously, i think it has to do more with how hyped he became courtesy of the media. as soon as something "bad" was found, it's like everyone's reaction was heightened. much like tim tebow is widely despised, in spite of being what most people would consider a role model.

j1bliss
j1bliss

The fact that these two athletes are even being juxtaposed is disgusting.  One person lied to the world for ten years about taking performance-enhancing drugs and one person was lied to for three years, and then made the mistake of not rushing out to the national media two days later when his dead girlfriend called him and said she faked her death to avoid being captured by drug dealers.  We're talking about days, possibly even weeks, when Manti Teo didn't come out and announce that he'd been fooled, probably hoping the story would die (can you blame him?).  And now we're pretending that he's somehow just like Lance Armstrong.  That's a ridiculous comparison.

JasonMacBride
JasonMacBride

Teo is pathetic. Armstrong is a fraud. Big difference.

Raj Babar
Raj Babar

people over-reacted to the Te'o story. no other explanation for how this story, at times, overshadowed Lance Armstrong's.

CarlJ
CarlJ

@j1bliss it's even more ridiculous that people expect teo to come clean after getting the phone call from his dead girlfriend, but he didn't because he thought the hoax was someone pretending to be his dead girlfriend and didn't realize it was all part of a bigger scam.