ESPN personality and College Football Hall of Fame coach Lou Holtz sued The Daily Beast on Wednesday in response to an article that featured a headline claiming he called immigrants “deadbeats” during the Republican National Convention last year, the Orlando Sentinel reported.
The defamation lawsuit, which was filed in federal court in Orlando, cites the website’s original title “Lou Holtz at RNC Said Immigrants are Deadbeats Invading the US,” which was later changed to “Holtz Goes on Immigrant-Bashing RNC Rant” caused Holtz “mental anguish … personal humiliation and distress”
Following the incident, The Daily Beast issued a correction that claimed Holtz “did not say that immigrants are ‘deadbeats,’ and we sincerely regret this error.”
Holtz believes that the updated headline still falsely portrays him in a negative light and that a change was only made after numerous other online media websites had repeated the initial headline.
The coach claims that he missed out on numerous paid speaking opportunities and is seeking more than $75,000 in damages, according to the lawsuit.
The article included a quote from Holtz in which he described the growing number of immigrants in the United States as an “invasion” and argued that they should “become us,” rather than the other way around.
“I don’t want to become you,” it quoted Holtz saying, prompting applause. “I don’t want to speak your language, I don’t want to celebrate your holidays, I sure as hell don’t want to cheer for your soccer team!”
Holtz’s lawsuit claims that he was relating advice from his grandmother, an immigrant herself, who stressed the importance of assimilation after moving to the United States.
His attorneys added that the soccer comment was “a joke that you would expect to hear from a lifelong football fan, football coach, and football commentator.”