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Board votes to keep UND 'Fighting Sioux' nickname for now

GRAND FORKS, N.D. - The North Dakota Board of Higher Education voted 5-3 Thursday to keep the status quo regarding the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux nickname while a legal appeal is pending.

The board also directed its attorney to request an expedited hearing with the state Supreme Court.

Board member Grant Shaft of Grand Forks said although the appeal does not prevent the board from directing UND to retire the nickname, he thinks it is appropriate to wait for the legal matter to be resolved.

Board member Mike Haugen of Fargo argued for directing UND to begin retiring the nickname.

"I don't see it in 10 months being any different than today," Haugen said.

Prior to the vote, UND President Bob Kelley and Athletic Director Brian Faison told board members a resolution is vital for the university to pursue membership in the Summit League.

Board members Sue Andrews, Claus Lembke, Jon Jackson and Duaine Espegard voted to wait until the appeal is resolved.

Members Haugen, Rachelle Hadland and President Richie Smith voted to move forward with retiring the name.


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