In the wake of the Manti Te’o catfish story, there are a lot of stories now coming out at an alarming rate about other athletes almost being duped.
Jeff Darlington of NFL.com is reporting that several Washington Redskins players were almost duped by a female with a fake online identity who was trying to contact the players.
Darlington reports that Redskins director of player personnel Philip Daniel’s put up a sign or memo in early December telling his players to [email protected] on twitter.
The players were given the direct order to stay away from her at all cost.
“Once we found out the person wasn’t real, we went from there,” Daniels told NFL.com when contacted about the situation late last week.
So basically around the same time Manti Te’o was in the cusp of his catfish ordeal, at least four Redskins players were headed for the same fate.
NFL security reportedly did a thorough investigation into the identity of one fake female named Sidney Ackerman, who used the pictures of porn star C.J. Miles to establish a relationship with the players.
The person running the scheme took down the Twitter and Facebook account of Ackerman after learning that this story was soon to be published.
According to reports, most of the conversations between the supposed woman and the players took place on twitter.
“If you think about it, a lot of them are single guys, and they see somebody who looks good in a picture or something,” Daniels said. “In many cases, it involves someone who is a fan of the team, so they’ll start talking about the team. You have to recognize that something just isn’t right.
“But you’re talking about a lot of guys who are single. I don’t fault the guys. I fault the people who are doing this crazy stuff, causing these problems.”
“I think it was all about attention,” Daniels said. “I don’t think it was any of the other stuff. It was just about being able to talk to them, pretending to be someone they aren’t. It was never a situation where guys were giving money or anything like that.”
On different occasions, those Redskins players attempted to arrange meetings with “Ackerman,” but none of them succeeded, Daniels said.
Those failed attempts led to suspicion, and Daniels then received some information about the possibility that “Ackerman” was indeed a fake.
The only good thing to come from this story is that none of those unnamed players fell or were emotionally involved with the hoax.