Christen Press responds to criticism over partnership with Barstool Sports | Football
USA star Christen Press has responded to questions about her involvement with Barstool Sports, a website with a history of misogyny.
Press linked up with Barstool during the US women’s team World Cup victory celebrations in New York City last week, posting videos of the parade to the website’s Instagram page. Columns in both the Guardian and Deadspin questioned the partnership given the US’s team fight for gender equality. One Barstool article claimed that “The USWNT Loves Barstool”.
Press’s PR team at EAG Sports Management did not respond to requests for comment from the Guardian last week, while Press did not appear at her scheduled press conference with her club team, the Utah Royals. The Royals later said that Press was not feeling well.
However, Press spoke to the Salt Lake City Tribune on Friday and said she had not been aware of Barstool’s reputation when the partnership was agreed. “To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t familiar with the site when my [PR] team presented the opportunity to me,” Press said. “I think everybody that knows me well knows that I support kindness, respect and dignity for all people.”
Barstool have run features in the past such as “Guess that Ass”, “Guess that Rack” and “Grading the Newest Sex Scandal Teacher”. It has also been involved in other controversial partnerships. ESPN ended a co-produced series with Barstool after just one show in 2017 after one of the broadcaster’s presenters, Samantha Ponder, drew attention to verbal abuse had received from Barstool’s founder, Dave Portnoy. Portnoy called Ponder “a slut” and described her daughter as a “rat kid” during a Barstool podcast.