Wednesday, June 13, 2012
North Dakotans Vote to Allow ‘Sioux’ Retirement
full two-thirds majority, North Dakotans voted Tuesday to let the University of North Dakota abandon the longtime and widely controversial “Fighting Sioux” nickname and Indian-head logo of its intercollegiate athletics teams.
By a |
“There’s definite consensus now that in order for us to move forward, the nickname and logo need to be retired,” said UND athletic director Brian Faison, who has endured administrative challenges resulting from rival schools boycotting games against the Sioux and the NCAA forbidding the team to wear its nickname or logo during post-season events, or from hosting post-season events in Grand Forks.
The reputation of the university at large has suffered as the issue has taken years to resolve, with the pendulum swinging from dropping the name to reinstating it to dropping it again. Last year, the State Legislature passed a law requiring the school to keep the name, then repealed it under the threat of NCAA sanctions.
Nickname supporters had gathered enough signatures to force Tuesday’s vote and vow, despite the result, to continue the fight to preserve the name — in use at the university since 1930 and sanctioned during a Sioux pipe ceremony in 1969.