ND Senate: Teams Can Drop Fighting Sioux Name

UND now allowed to drop nickname NCAA finds objectionable
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 9, 2011 12:56 AM CST
It will cost the University of North Dakota about $750,000 to retire the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo, President Robert Kelley says.    (AP Photo/Dale Wetzel, File)
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(Newser) – The University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux teams can now change their nickname if they want to, the state Senate has decided. A law requiring UND teams to keep their name and logo was adopted in response to the NCAA's decision to put UND under sanctions because it considers the name offensive. The repeal bill—which requires UND to wait three years before picking another nickname—passed 39-7 and now goes to the state House, where it may face stiffer opposition, AP reports.

"Let us recognize that being forced to change what you're called doesn't mean changing who you are," said state Sen. Mac Schneider, a former UND football player. "We are the University of North Dakota, and we'll always be fighting." The NCAA has allowed some teams to keep American Indian nicknames if they have won tribal support. But while the Spirit Lake Sioux tribe doesn't mind UND keeping the nickname and logo, the Standing Rock Sioux's tribal council has refused to support it.

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