University of North Dakota "Fighting Sioux" set to retire nickname

Discussion in 'Sports Zone' started by ajk23az, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. ajk23az

    ajk23az Through Pain Comes Clarity

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    Court, board decide to retire nickname

    Associated Press

    MAYVILLE, N.D. -- A state Supreme Court ruling and a Board of Higher Education decision have retired for good the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux nickname after a four-year legal battle.

    The court ruled Thursday that the board had the authority to dump the nickname at any time. The court rejected an appeal that sought to delay action.

    A motion later Thursday at the board's regularly scheduled meeting in Mayville to reconsider its vote in May to retire the nickname died after nobody seconded it.

    Claus Lembke, the board member who made the failed motion, said the board was "giving in to a minority of people on the issue."

    Board president Richie Smith had said before the vote that he thought no further action was required to retire the nickname.

    Board member and university alumnus Grant Shaft said afterward that he believes most people are tired of the controversy.

    "I think people have moved to the point, for a number of reasons, that they wanted this to move along," Shaft said.

    UND president Robert Kelley, who was hired in part to help the school in its transition from Division II to Division I athletics, said he's looking forward to managing the nickname transition.

    "It's hard sitting on your hands waiting for a deliberate process to run its course, not knowing what the outcome would be," Kelley said after the board meeting. "Now that we have a decision from the state board, we can move ahead."

    In their ruling, the justices said the board had the authority to change the nickname before a Nov. 30 deadline set in a settlement with the NCAA. A group of eight Spirit Lake Sioux tribal members who want the school to keep the nickname were seeking to have the court bar any decision before the deadline.

    The state Supreme Court said nothing in the settlement prevents the board from making a decision before the deadline.

    Supporters believe the logo shows pride and tradition. But the NCAA considers the nickname "hostile and offensive" and said UND cannot host postseason events without approval from the state's two Sioux tribes. Under the settlement, the board and UND agreed to begin retiring the nickname if they couldn't obtain permission from the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock Sioux tribes by Nov. 30.

    Spirit Lake tribal members have voted to support the nickname, but the Standing Rock tribal council has resisted calls for it to change its bylaws to allow a vote on the issue.

    A district judge dismissed the Spirit Lake members' lawsuit in December. The state Supreme Court agreed to hear an expedited appeal after UND officials pleaded with the board to decide the issue quickly so the school could pursue admission to the Summit League.

    Summit League president Tom Douple has said UND won't be considered for admission until the school finds a solution that makes the NCAA happy.

    The Spirit Lake members' attorney, Patrick Morley, didn't return a call Thursday seeking comment.

    Shaft said he doesn't think it'll make a difference if Standing Rock decides to support the logo.

    "With the makeup of the board right now, I don't think we have the opportunity to bring it back for reconsideration," Shaft said.

    Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press


    My whole family went to North Dakota State, the rival of University of North Dakota, but I'm still disappointed in this....
  2. HoleInTheRoof

    HoleInTheRoof Benched

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    Welcome to America.

    If anything . . . ANYTHING . . . even remotely offends even a single person, you can go to court and have it changed!

  3. Hoofbite

    Hoofbite Well-Known Member

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    The Cleveland Indians should have to change their Mascot before anyone.

    That caricature is far more offensive than any other out there.
  4. Eldorado

    Eldorado Member

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    What about the Redskins? I mean come on... Red.. Skin... Redskin.
  5. Big Dakota

    Big Dakota New Member

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    I live 1 mile from Standing Rock and i'm an enrolled member. Not many people even care about UND's logo or the name Fighting Sioux. There was a poll taken and an overwhelming amount of people on the rez are for keeping the name. It's not one bit offensive IMO.

    I do agree the Cleveland Logo is offensive as is the name Redskins. I don't appreciate the Braves chop and chant nor do i like the Seminoles mascot, but the Seminole people support the team and the mascot so if they are OK with it who am i to *****? My sister graduated for UND and i've always worn their shirts and my son has a very cool hockey jersey. I'll be sad to see the name go away.
  6. Hoofbite

    Hoofbite Well-Known Member

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    The Chiefs fans do that chop as well.

    As far as the Skins go, they're right in there with the Indians IMO.

    I've gone back and forth in threads about this topic. I've always thought some of the names and depictions were offensive but have teetered on wether or not teams should HAVE to change them.

    I guess it comes down to like you said. If the people of whatever nation is being depicted embrace the idea, who is anyone else to complain?

    When it comes to names, I don't see much of a problem with names like Seminoles because IMO they are not distasteful. Then again, I'm not a member of that or any tribe so I can't relate. I can understand if members take issue and wouldn't disagree with any of them but I don't personally get offended when I hear Seminoles, Braves or the majority of the names out there.

    I do however think names like "Fighting Sioux" are just out of place and I sort of cringe when I hear em. It just seems like it carries the connotation that Sioux as a whole are war-hungry people.

    I dunno. Maybe that's me. Like I said, I don't have the background to understand the issue but I'd be more than willing to listen to those who do.

    In the end, it comes down to the time you are in. Early to mid-1900s you could name a team the Redskins or throw up some ridiculously exaggerated mockery of a mascot and nobody would say a thing. Today, if you were starting a new team, you almost assuredly wouldn't do such a thing. And if you wouldn't name a new franchise the Redskins of Fighting Sioux or whatever else, it's probably time to look at finding an alternative for the existing names that wouldn't fly as of right now.
  7. CanadianCowboysFan

    CanadianCowboysFan Lightning Rod

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    Chief Wahoo is funny.

    Whatever happened to Chief Nocohoma (sp)?
  8. Joe Rod

    Joe Rod When Keeping it Real Goes Wrong

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    As a former student of UND, I am a little sad, because the school bent over backwards to try and honor the Sioux indians, even getting their logo remade by a Native American artist.

    It stinks, but at least it is over with.

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