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#pounditTuesday, October 19, 2021

Sam Ponder takes aim at Barstool Sports after they announce new ESPN show

Samantha Steele

ESPN and Barstool Sports announced this week that the two media companies will be teaming up for a late-night show, and not all of the World Wide Leader’s employees are happy about it.

Sam Ponder, a former sideline reporter who has been hosting “Sunday NFL Countdown” this season, sarcastically welcomed Dan “Big Cat” Katz to the ESPN family on Monday. She did so by highlighting a Barstool blog post from 2014 in which Ponder was called a “bible-thumping freak.” At the time, Ponder criticized Barstool for condemning Ray Rice’s act of domestic violence when they are one of a number of websites that “constantly disrespect women & objectify their bodies.”

When Katz noted that the blog post Ponder highlighted was not authored by him, Ponder pointed out to her followers that she was once called a “slut” on Barstool’s popular “Rundown” show. Katz said he actually defended Ponder that day and told her it was his boss, Barstool founder Dave Portnoy, who insulted her. Here’s some of the exchange:

When asked why she didn’t speak up three years ago, Ponder said she feels differently now that the company she works for has partnered with Barstool.

It’s pretty shocking that ESPN has teamed up with Barstool, especially since the latter’s uber-popular “Pardon My Take” podcast was the subject of a cease and desist letter from ESPN when it first launched. Since then, Katz and co-host PFT Commenter have had numerous ESPN personalities on the podcast.

Portnoy has gone to great lengths to bash ESPN since the Deflategate scandal involving his New England Patriots, which is another reason the latest news is a surprise.

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