Rumors that New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez is dating 17-year-old Greenwich High School student Eliza Kruger have been floating around online for weeks now.
The daughter of Connecticut hedge funder Konrad “Chip” Kruger reportedly texted pals about who she met at NYC nightclub Lavo on New Year’s Eve.
“You know I’m 17, right?” Eliza recounted of her first conversation with Mark.
Mark replied, “Well, we can still talk, but I can’t see you until you’re 18,” to which Eliza Kruger helpfully reminded him, “17 is legal in New York.”
They kept in touch and Mark gave her tickets to the Jets vs. Bills game. Later that week, they went on a date and after the date, they hooked up.
Eliza said she made sure to research the legality of dating a minor – 17 being the legal age of consent in New York and 16 in New Jersey.
“He’s a really nice guy, you know,” Eliza said. “He’s one of the kindest people, and he’s a genuine person.”
Sanchez has yet to comment, but Jets did release a statement last week in response, saying: “We are not going to discuss Mark’s private life.”
According to Deadspin.com, Sanchez and Kruger are in a relationship – they’ve had dates at the famous Nobu restaurant in New York City and even overnight stays in Sanchez’s New Jersey home.
They met at a nightclub on New Year’s Eve, and Kruger actually posted on her Facebook page, that “MARK F–ING SANCHEZ” texted her.
Eliza told Deadspin.com: “We went back to his place in Jersey after dinner. He lives on a golf course. There was a big storm.” She also took photos of a bed in his bedroom that you could tell had been slept in as “proof” of their huddle just days later.
Asked if she “hooked up” with Sanchez that night at Nobu during the first week of January, Eliza said, “Yeah,” albeit somewhat reluctantly, according to Deadspin.
Prior to this sexually charged controversy, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan was confronted by reporters about leaked foot fetish videos featuring he and his wife, Michelle. The league had also launched an investigation into whether a Jets player harassed reporter Ines Sainz during a practice. Sanchez personally refuted the latter charge by saying that Sainz “was too old for any of us to be interested in. Didn’t happen.”
Eliza Kruger said that before pursuing relations with Sanchez, she made sure to research the legality of dating a minor. Indeed, the legal age of consent in New York is 17. In New Jersey, where Sanchez lives, the age is 16.
Sources close to both Sanchez and Kruger said that the relationship turned physical after Sanchez gave Kruger tickets to the Jets vs. Bills game. He had offered her tickets to other games, but she was unable to attend because they fell on school nights.
However, with the flood of attention the relationship has attracted, Eliza Kruger has retained the services of a lawyer, worried about how the exposure could negatively affect her reputation.
“I don’t want that image,” Kruger said, comparing the media hype to the turmoil stirred up after the widely-publicized discovery of Ashton Kutcher’s affair.
“They don’t let you get a Facebook account until you’re 13, so I haven’t been using it very long. I’m still learning how to get through all the privacy settings, and I didn’t realize that my messages were out there for everyone to see. But what matters is how much I love Mark F’n Sanchez.”
According to Deadspin, they were contacted by Eliza Kruger. Eliza Kruger, through a series of emails, told Deadspin about her relationship with Mark Sanchez, the New York Jets quarterback who has led the Jets to two consecutive AFC Championship games.
After a period of time, Eliza Kruger had a change of heart, and told Deadspin that she was reneging on her cooperation with the ongoing story involving Mark Sanchez, and threatened to sue Deadspin if they ran the story.
Her threat was followed by a letter sent to Deadspin from an attorney based in California, who also threatened Deadspin with legal action if they ran the story.
Is this just a ploy to gain publicity by Eliza? If so, she has succeeded beyond her wildest dreams.