The Accent Speakers Bureau announced via social media Wednesday that Dave Portnoy, the founder of the blog Barstool Sports, will be its next speaker. The show will take place on April 1 at the University Auditorium.
Portnoy is known for his satirical comedy and has a history of misogyny, according to a Daily Beast article published in 2018. It was reported that Portnoy has — on multiple occasions — used insensitive remarks toward women.
In 2017, Samantha Ponder, an NFL Countdown on ESPN host, shared screenshots of a 2014 Barstool Sports blog post where Portnoy was accused of writing that her primary job was to “make men hard.”
Henry Fair, the bureau’s chairperson, did not respond to comment after two phone calls, two text messages and one email. He said he was at work.
This is the second speaker event Accent has hosted this school year. The first, Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, also spoke at the University Auditorium in the fall.
Trump Jr.’s visit was also met with controversy. Besides the protesters that demonstrated at the UF before the speech, emails eventually revealed that a Trump reelection campaign official personally asked UF Student Body President Michael Murphy in September to host Trump Jr. and Guilfoyle.
Any attempt to suppress Portnoy’s voice and him appearing at UF may backfire and promote the behavior he’s known for, said Ana Dieng, 18.
“It will be pretty entertaining, and I think it’s fitting to some extent,” Dieng, a UF biomedical engineering freshman, said. “Making light of the situation and just having a speaker who can have a sense of humor and try and be relatable I think might be a more beneficial way to look at him coming.”
Tim Guerriero, a 22-year-old UF chemistry senior, is unopposed to Portnoy’s appearance.
“Unless he’s coming here for a political speech or something like that, I don’t think someone’s opinions should be necessarily protested against,” Guerriero said.
Alyssa Feliciano contributed to this report.
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Accent Speakers Bureau will be hosting Dave Portnoy at the University Auditorium April 1.