The 19-year-old Ohio State University student named as the cause of Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey's marriage split has come forward to defend herself from press reports.

Pretty DANIELLE CALO was pictured hugging Lachey in September (05) at a high school football game in Columbus, Ohio, and has since revealed she briefly romanced the pop star - but refused to have sex with him.

But, a week after Lachey and Simpson announced their split, Calo appeared on US news show Extra last night (30NOV05) to insist she wasn't the reason behind the marriage failure.

She said, "There's no way I had that much of an effect on their marriage, No way. I was just the girl he picked that night."

Calo confirmed she did accept an offer to spend time alone with Lachey in his hotel room, but insisted she did not sleep with the hunk.

She claimed she told lusty Lachey, "If you think I'm that kind of girl, I'm not."

The student insisted the pair, "hung out and just kissed and that was it," adding, "I didn't want it to escalate."

When asked what Calo would tell Simpson if the two met, she told Extra, "I'd say I'm sorry. I want this whole situation to be gone and go back to the way it was."