Showing posts with label UND. Show all posts
Showing posts with label UND. Show all posts

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Sure, why not? Crookston Times Letter: Prairie Dogs is a great nickname for UND

This one is too hilarious not to share with the blog readers, feel free to share your thoughts. This nickname suggestion is almost as bad as Sundogs. Close, but Sundogs still takes it for all-time bad nickname suggestions.

Per the Crookston Times:
I'd like to add my suggestion to that list of five, Prairie Dogs. Why Prairie Dogs? Because they're social animals, they keep a sharp lookout for their enemies, and they alert one another to danger by making loud barking or chirping noises. Also, just think about it. What are the prairie states? They're Montana, North Dakota, and Minnesota, and they border the prairie provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba. Go! Prairie Dogs! Go!

If you're curious about why I took such an interest in this "Name Game," I can tell you why. I grew up in Crookston, Minnesota and played ice hockey at Cathedral High School with Johnny Noah who died this month. Johnny was 87, and so am I. Johnny and other guys from Cathedral played for the first UND Big Ten hockey team which was coached by our former football and hockey coach, Don Norman. Of course, this was way back in the forties and early fifties, but it sure left an impression on me, and so did Johnny Noah who also played on the U.S. Olympic team.
By Chuck Dowdle
Cambria, California

WHKY: North Dakota opens season against the Rensselaer Engineers


The University of North Dakota women's hockey team will open its regular season on the road in upstate New York. North Dakota will face RPI in an ever-important non-conference game right out of the gate.

When playing in the WCHA, non-conference games can make or break a team's post-season hopes. This weekend is no exception and North Dakota hopes to win its first game in Troy, N.Y. this weekend. Veterans returning to this ice for the green and white understand that importance of this weekend. "We know what it's like to drop games early and, I guess, be punished for it at the end of the season," senior, forward Layla Marvin said.

Head coach Brian Idalski said that the focus is to win hockey games, but that the team needs to be patient with where its at at this stage in the season.

The last time the teams met at the Houston Field House, RPI swept North Dakota. Last season, the Engineers traveled to The Ralph for the season opener where North Dakota took the game 7-1.

Last weekend North Dakota struggled offensively in their exhibition against the University of Manitoba Bisons. The lone goal credited in the second to Anna Kiponen. The puck came off the skate of a Bisons player before entering their net. North Dakota gave all three goaltenders a workout during the exhibition.

Live stats will be available for tomorrow's game (5:00 p.m. CST) and Saturday (1:00 p.m. CST) match-up at RPI Athletics. You can also follow @UNDWHockey on Twitter for updates.

North Dakota will continue its caravan on the road through October 16th. The first home game of the season will be a Saturday afternoon match-up against the gritty, Bemidji State Beavers on October 17th.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Oh Boy!

Ruthmary Arnason Unruh of Grand Forks, ND wrote this doozy of a letter to the editor. In my opinion, she's living in a pure fantasy world. Sure Nodaks is unique, but Sundogs isn't. Thank God, every online poll that I have seen has Sundogs in fourth or fifth.

NODAKS—Imagine this:
•A bold outline of the state of North Dakota
•A background of green and white (stripes, checks, lightning bolts, etc.)
•The word "NODAKS" in big letters covering the state—in a bold, funky font
•The eternal flame aglow in the letter "D" like the existing UND symbol
•This is a personal favorite. We are truly Nodaks.

SUNDOGS—Picture this:
•The word SUNDOGS in a creative brilliant font
•A burst (like the sun) around the letters UND of SUNDOGS
•Color bursts (sundogs) on either side of the word SUNDOGS (probably green and white flashes with a sparkling, classy look)
•The eternal flame aglow in the letter "D" or "O."

Come on, UND fans: Look forward. Visualize. Imagine. Pledge your loyalty.

Stand up and Cheer for a great new UND look.

North Dakota—Here's to you!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Snap Shot: StarTribune's online poll, UND Nickname (Updated)

Updated numbers: While not very scientific at all. It does show that Fighting Hawks and Roughriders (Rough Riders) are the most popular. (Link to Poll)  Thoughts? None of the above isn't a choice.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

UND to Pay Cost of Attendance Stipends To all Scholarship Athletes

We now break away from our previously scheduled programming to bring you this breaking news. According to Brad Elliott Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald; the University of North Dakota has entered the arms race and will now pay Cost of attendance stipends To all of their scholarship athletes.

Per the Grand Forks Herald:
UND will pay all scholarship athletes bonus stipends -- or full amended grant-in-aid as the school terms it -- beginning in 2016-17 season.

UND already offers the stipends to men's and women's hockey scholarship athletes.

The announcement comes six days after rival North Dakota State announced it would do the same.

UND estimates the cost at $3,400 for full scholarship athletes. Those on 90 percent scholarships would get 90 percent of the $3,400 and so on.
With their in-state rival North Dakota State University announcing last week that giving COA Stipends to their football team, UND had no choice but to jump into the arms race and make this happen. Or risk falling behind.  I am sure the other Big Sky schools will be thrilled with this decision or they now have to up the ante.

Some bloggers and news folks will grumble about public universities paying the COA's of student Athletes, but UND has no choice in the matter. If they want to remain competitive with the other Dakota schools, they have keep up with the Jonses.

Here's the official release from UND.

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – University of North Dakota director of athletics Brian Faison announced today that UND Athletics will expand the awarding of full amended grant-in-aid to all student-athletes on athletic aid beginning with the 2016-17 academic year.

UND Athletics already provides full amended grant-in-aids for men’s and women’s ice hockey.

The value of a full amended grant-in-aid at the University of North Dakota is based on the total cost of mandatory fees and tuition (online tuition not included), room (as determined by the University for double occupancy) and board (based on the “Unlimited Meal Plus Plan” rate) and books (as determined by the NCAA), plus personal expenses (including transportation) as outlined by the Student Financial Aid Office for athletes. The specific amount for each student-athlete is determined by his/her residency status (i.e. in-state, out-of-state, etc.) and living situation (i.e. with parents or on/off campus).

“This is a necessary step that empowers our coaches to continue recruiting high-caliber student-athletes. It puts our coaches on equal financial footing when competing against regional peer institutions for the best recruits,” said Faison.

Faison added that details regarding funding will be evaluated and finalized over the next several weeks.

UND Nickname: Who Should Vote?

We're finally seeing the light at the end the of the tunnel. This fall, the current UND students, current UND faculty, current UND staff, UND Retirees, UND Alumni, UND donors (including Champions Club members) (one vote per account) will vote for the new UND nickname. Finally, current season ticket holders to UND athletic events (one vote per account) will get to vote.

Mike Connor from Starkweather, N.D. thinks that tax payers should be able to vote.

Per the Grand Forks Herald:
Because I did not attend UND, have never worked for UND and do not own a season ticket, I really have no business fretting about the university's choice of a new nickname. Or at least, that appears to be the opinion of UND President Kelley.

It is clear that Kelley has disenfranchised me and many other North Dakotans by barring our vote on the nickname, even though we are taxpaying residents of the state.
On the Flip side of the argument Rodney Iverson from Chandler, Ariz thinks that non-alumni shouldn't be able to vote.

Per the Grand Forks Herald:
The issue I have is with allowing season ticket holders and donors who are not alumni to vote.

And the reason I have an issue with it is the fact that there are many people who can't afford to donate or to buy season tickets but still are huge UND fans.

They certainly would fall under the "stakeholders" group, but because they can't afford to buy their way into voting, they're being left out.

By the way, I am not in that category; I am an alumni and will get the chance to vote. Just call it the "bleeding heart liberal" in me that is finding an issue with this system.

The only fair solution would be to insist that non-alumni cannot vote, even if they hold season tickets or have given money to the university. I know this suggestion will anger some non-alumni, while others will cheer it.
I think UND President Robert O'Kelley is right on who can vote in the nickname process is correct. If UND let every one that wants to vote, vote, especially those with no skin in the game; imagine that results.

I think that President Kelley is also right to not let the trolls from other campuses and fan bases, with bad intentions vote in the process. Bravo President Kelley.

So, no. I don't think the "Tax Payers" in North Dakota should have a vote.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

The Forum is at it Again

Today, the Fargo Forum is up to it's old tricks. Again, the Forum can't help itself, they have to write yet another OP, Ed, slamming UND fans. Ugh, we really don't need them inserting themselves in the nickname argument. Maybe they're trying to stoke the fires before the NDSU vs. UND football game. I think the Forum should spend more time talking about last Saturday's football game against the Griz.

First, we all know the University of North Dakota will never, ever be the Fighting Sioux again. There was a statewide vote and it failed.

This is a true statement.

Honestly, I don't know anyone that is actively advocating promoting that UND remain the Fighting Sioux. I do know there were a fair number of people that wanted UND to simply remain UND/North Dakota. With the Fighting Sioux nickname, UND would've never hosted the West Regional last March. Right?

Of course, I do know a lot of people that are upset with the NCAA and the way they handled the situation. That's why thousands of people liked the Facebook group the Sioux were Silenced.

Second, I understand why a lot of people are upset with President Dr. Robert O'Kelley taking the UND/North Dakota option out of the voting process. I can live with that, as long as the voting goes the way President Kelley says it will. Any usurping of the process from here will be unacceptable. As a measure of good faith, President Kelley should kill the Sundogs choice right now. This would help avoid a potentially very bad situation.

President Kelley made a decision and is sticking by it. I have to give him credit for having a backbone and a pair of stones. I am also not an advocate calling for his immediate resignation, he's gone in 2016, any way.

Per the Forum:
Those who cling desperately and foolishly to the University of North Dakota’s retired Fighting Sioux name and logo have taken to blaming the NCAA for bullying the university and the state of North Dakota into scrapping their precious moniker. It’s a strawman argument.

The NCAA is a membership organization. Moreover, its governance structure relies on college and university presidents, chancellors or their designees to make policy and otherwise oversee the organization.

Member schools agree to membership requirements, most of which are promulgated by representatives of the schools. Each of the several athletic divisions is represented on a separate board by member campus officials from appropriate divisions and conferences.

It’s a representative association, not an ivory tower dictatorship.

Here’s the kicker: Member schools agree to adhere to NCAA rules and regulations regarding standards for athletic teams. It is essentially a contract. If a school does not like what the NCAA requires, there is nothing forcing the school to remain a member. There are consequences, of course, because the NCAA’s influence over college sports is ubiquitous. That’s the way it is.
As I have said in the past, I believe that the replacement nickname selections aren't very good. There're a lot of problems with the five (5) remaining selections. North Stars is a bad choice and should be removed from consideration along with Sundogs.

Naming UND's sports teams, the Sundogs will not bring anyone together, or give us something to rally around. Sundogs will further divide the UND community. In the last decade, Sundogs was promoted by the anti-Fighting Sioux nickname crowd. If you don't believe me, look it up.

There are two replacement nicknames that are semi-decent and there are problems with one of them. The best choice is Rough Riders and in today's politically correct world, there's bound to be someone that will be offended with that nickname. So, if UND picks that nickname, UND might have to revisit the issue once again. Next to UND, I like that choice the best. Fighting Hawks is also acceptable. But again, you have to tread lightly selecting the logo. The handwringing do-gooders are going to be on guard.

Finally, while the nickname story has given me something to blog about; during what ended up being a very boring summer, news wise. Think about this, nothing happened this summer. However, I am growing tired of listening to people bicker with each other about the nickname. This has become a very toxic issue and I am ready to vote. Is the new nickname going to be as cool as Fighting Sioux? Not even close. I would compare this to going from staying in a five-star hotel to getting the last room in a Red Roof Inn. You can come up with your own analogies.

I know I am tired of hearing this and so are you.  It's time we move on together as a collective group, and heal together. Being at each others throats isn't healthy. Moreover, we need to do this together as a fan base and we don't need others from outside influencing our decision.

We will always be the University of North Dakota, personally, I have two degrees that say this much. I just hope when the voting is done and the dust has settled, UND isn't hamstrung with some stupid nickname that will continue to divide us long after my generation has left this earth. Go UND....

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Enough with the Sundogs, It's time to reject this

This is why I get frustrated. Today, Marvin Asp of East Grand Forks, MN, wrote an article to the Grand Forks Herald. His letter has some seriously flawed logic. First, the guys has no idea what a Sundog is. Second, if Sundogs is the new nickname of the UND, I can say with much certainty, there will be a lot of backlash from fans and alumni.
Check it out, from the Grand Forks Herald:
And all of our teams need to be supported with that same passion. We look at our neighbors to the south and the success they have had in their athletic programs, and we see that we need to unite behind an identity, too.

Let's stop kicking and screaming and trying to hold on to that old security blanket, like the "Peanuts" character, Linus.

Now, the NCAA has thrown down another gauntlet. Let's take the high road and be good sports; most of us already are.

I do not know what the next name will be, but if I had to choose one, it would be Sundogs. But it would not be some cute and cuddly puppy. Instead, it would be the actual Sundog as seen in nature, with a wolf-pack silhouette.

The wolf pack stands for family and teamwork. As I said, we are a family; let's support each other, and move forward.
A Sundog is not a dog or a wolf. Again, look at the pictures, this is not something to use as a sports team nickname. It's also the preferred nickname replacement choice by the a UND campus group during the 1990's and early 2000's. Yeah, that's not going to cause any problems on campus.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Robert O. Kelley, " No UND/North Dakota option"

The University of North Dakota President Robert O. Kelley has spoken, UND/North Dakota won't be a nickname option when voting for a new nickname begins.

This could get ugly.

Honestly, I am not surprised by this decision. I wish that the UND/North Dakota option was one of the choices, but I am one person. Whether you like him or not, I think that President Kelley is in a tough spot. I am sure he had all sides lobbying him. The slight threat of NCAA sanctions probably also played a hand in this.

Here's the letter from President Kelley. I do like the fact that members of other schools or people that have poor intentions can't vote for the UND nickname. I applaud President Kelley for that. In other words, you have to have some skin in the game.

The voting process, which will be conducted completely online, will take place in mid-October and will extend for approximately one week. Precise dates will be announced later. Voting will be open to the following groups:
• Current UND Students
• Current UND Faculty
• Current UND Staff
• UND Retirees
• UND Alumni
• UND Donors (including Champions Club members) (one vote per account)
• Current season ticket holders to UND athletic events (one vote per account)
In order to be eligible to vote, individuals must be a UND retiree; a current faculty or staff member; a currently-enrolled student as of Sept. 30, 2015; or a donor or season ticket holder as of Aug. 31, 2015.

Shortly before the voting period begins, eligible voters will receive an email with voting instructions. Current UND students, faculty and staff will receive the emails at their UND ( email address. Alumni, donors, retirees and all current season ticket holders must confirm their emails through a process that will be communicated soon. Eligible voters who fall into more than one of the above categories—such as a staff member who is also an alumnus—may only vote once, and any identified multiple votes will be voided.

The online voting process will be conducted by Qualtrics, a third-party survey technology provider with more than 7,000 customers in 75 countries. In 2014, Qualtrics customers sent over one billion surveys worldwide.

During the voting process, eligible voters will cast one vote for a single option on the ballot. Eligible voters will choose one of five nickname options:

Fighting Hawks
North Stars

If any of the proposed nicknames receives a majority of more than 50 percent of the votes, that name will be determined to be the new nickname for the University of North Dakota.

In the event that no single nickname receives more than 50 percent of the vote, a runoff vote will be held between the two top vote-getters shortly after the initial vote.

Said UND President Robert Kelley: “In deciding the final list of names to include in the final vote, I have reviewed the recommendations of the Nickname Committee, the additional input received from a recent student poll, and input from many other individual students (including student athletes), faculty, staff, alumni and community members who have contacted me. I have considered all this input carefully and, in determining the final voting list, have concluded that it is in the best long-term interest of the University not to use ‘North Dakota’ as the University’s official nickname.” President Kelley added, “As I have noted many times, North Dakota is not a nickname—it is a reflection of our pride in who we are. We have been North Dakota—UND—for more than 130 years, and we always will be. The Nickname Committee has delivered a list of five prospective nicknames with the potential to add value to our already-existing North Dakota identity and evoke the pride and spirit that we all feel for our University and our State. I respect and support the process the Committee used, and the extensive public input they gathered. In making this decision, I also respect their final recommendations.”

President Kelley also received extensive input concerning the people who should be involved in the voting process. One important consideration in the decision is the importance of verifying voter identity to prevent fraud. Each eligible voter’s identity and connection to UND will be confirmed.

Even more importantly, noted President Kelley, “We have appreciated the opportunity this past year to gather feedback and ensure representation from all interested parties across the state and across the country. This was accomplished through broad stakeholder representation on the two teams that worked on this process. It was also accomplished by gathering feedback from last fall's town hall meetings, an online survey, and the month-long nickname comment process conducted by the Nickname Committee this past April. It is now time to allow the final step of this process to be undertaken by those individuals with the most direct ties to UND—students, alumni, faculty, staff, retirees, donors, and season ticket holders.”

Information About Email Delivery of Voting Instructions:

Eligible voters will soon receive voting instructions. While students, faculty and staff will already have a confirmed means of identification through their UND email (, retirees, alumni, donors and current season ticket holders will need to ensure that their emails are current in their respective databases in order to be able to vote. The weeks prior to the vote will allow these groups the opportunity to do that.

Current season ticket holders (non-Champions Club): Contact the Ralph Engelstad Arena Box Office at 701.777.0855 between the hours of 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Monday-Friday, or email any time between now and October 1, 2015 to ensure that your correct email is on file.

UND alumni, retirees, and donors: Additional information will soon be sent explaining how to confirm email addresses. For alumni, this information will be sent via the Alumni Review and through a direct mail.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Swamp Rabbits > Sundogs

As we go through the nickname process at the University of North Dakota, why is that other places can come up with better names thane we can? Seriously, according to multiple blogs and Internet sources, ECHL’s Greenville Road Warriors have changed their name — starting next year, they’ll be the Greenville Swamp Rabbits. That nickname is absolutely genius. They haven an awesome logo, too. In my opinion, Swamp Rabbits is > Sundogs.

Grand Forks Herald: Don't saddle next president with UND nickname issue

Today, Tom Dennis of the Grand Forks Herald has posted a pretty interesting article. I think Dennis makes some really good points. Whether we like it or not, this issue eventually needs to be solved. UND President Kelley needs to decide if UND is going to be simply North Dakota or one of the five nickname choices.

That being said, Kelley needs to involve the students, alumni and stakeholders in this decision. If not, this is going to fester long after he is gone. The key word is involved.
Per Tom Dennis of the Herald:
On Saturday, a group of protesters gathered at University Park in Grand Forks, and among their calls was for Kelley to immediately resign. The fact that Kelley is retiring next year isn't good enough, they said. Because the final round of nickname decisions should be made by Kelley's successor—not Kelley himself.

We disagree. Moreover, we think Kelley absolutely is the right person to be making nickname decisions these days—not because he's Robert Kelley, but because he's the longstanding and experienced president of UND.

And that's the executive who should be making nickname calls at this point.

In contrast, the next president will be a beginner in all things UND.

And more than any other issue at UND, the nickname issue is one that a beginner simply should not decide. Because in order to make smart decisions on the nickname—one of the most complicated and divisive issues in the history of the state—you've got to have a full understanding of the decades-long background of the issue.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Fargo Forum Editorial: UND, don't pander to protesters'

They must be bored in Fargo, ND? They really can't help themselves. Must not have anything to report.

Per Fargo Forum:
First, they want the university’s list of selections for a new UND team name to include “North Dakota.” It’s a transparent ploy to somehow retain some iteration of “Fighting Sioux,” which has been retired.

Second, they want the immediate resignation of UND President Robert Kelley because by their assessment he has presided over a name-change process that has not been responsive to their concerns. What a crock. If ever there was a process that has been painfully long and over-the-top inclusive, it’s been the university’s name-change saga.

But none of that matters to a small, but noisy cabal of unreconstructed “Fighting Sioux” fans. No matter what the eventual choice is, no matter what sort of consensus is achieved, no matter how many voices have been part of the process, they will not accept the inevitable. It makes no sense for Kelley and the university to continue to pander to them. They had their shot, they lost. Whatever they do now is sideshow.

The arrogant contention that “the Sioux have been silenced” is so obviously false as to be cartoonish. First, the “silence” made loud headlines for years, and still is. Second, the history of the moniker debate is replete with pro-Fighting Sioux arguments, some cogent, others offensive. That the case was weak and ultimately failed is the reality that some arguers refuse to accept.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

WSJ: Name Game in Search of a New North Dakota Mascot

Nothing new here. The title is a bit off as well, UND is looking for a new nickname, the mascot will come later.

Per the Wall Street Journal:
But a committee assigned to identify a new nickname for the school, which first met in March, voted recently by a margin of 7-4 to eliminate North Dakota as an option. Some argued that the state name didn’t actually count as a nickname.

The group will put five candidates—Fighting Hawks, Nodaks, North Stars, Roughriders and Sundogs—to a public vote, though the process and timeline haven’t been determined. The Wall Street Journal reported in March the committee at that time had hoped to come to a final decision on a new nickname as early as May, but the panel recommended waiting until students and faculty return to campus for the fall semester before any vote takes place.

The committee settled on the five finalists after receiving more than 1,000 “appropriate” suggestions from the public, according to Peter Johnson, executive associate vice president for university relations.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Mike Jacobs: Limit UND nickname vote to active athletes

In today's Grand Forks Herald, former Herald editor Mike Jacobs suggests that the current athletes pick the new UND nickname. I could live with that, but you're going alienate a bunch of fans. So, I don't see that happening.

Now, if they UND used this method to select a new nickname, there's a very good chance that we wouldn't end up with the moronic nickname Sundogs. Right?

Per the Grand Forks Herald.
The best, most credible constituency to vote on a new nickname is the university's active athletes.-- the people who will wear the name on the ice, on the field, on the track, in every athletic venue.

In other words, they are the one who will represent the university.

Their opinion matters more than the opinion of any other potential voters. I am speaking as three times eligible, as a North Dakotan, an alumnus and a UND donor.

I am willing to forfeit these interests in favor of a credible constituency that can bring an end to this long-running controversy. We've been arguing about the nickname and logo for 20 years. It's time to end the fight.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Redwing77's Endorsement and Prediction

by Redwing77

Let's Recap:

Nickname Committee failed in many ways (not all of the ways listed by Goon or myself, but I'm not going to sling mud at what is now a defunct committee).  There was, predictably, uproar about the omission of the "North Dakota" option.  President Kelley rebutted that he'll consider re-adding the option to the vote.  Stakeholders backed off.

The Prediction

President Kelley isn't going to be UND President in 4 months time.  He just has to keep the status quo until the new guy comes in.  It would not be unbelievable to have him drop something of a bit of a PR mess in the lap of the next President...especially if he feels that his replacement is someone who is a threat to his legacy.  Remember, pettiness runs hand in hand with bureaucracy.  Therefore, until it is actually re-added, I think his "consideration" of readding the "North Dakota" option will end with his consideration.  He will not re-add the "North Dakota" option to the ballot.  Here's the list of reasons why:

1.  He's afraid that the public will overwhelmingly vote for this option and force the past year or so to be considered a waste of time, energy, and worst of all, money.
2.  People aren't remember for changing nothing.  They're remembered poorly for only changing it partially.  It's all or nothing when it comes to politically motivated legacies.
3.  The mere consideration of doing so was simply just a PR ploy to get everyone just to back the hell off.

Let's face it.  UND has faced this type of thing before.  Charlie Murphy did the same thing.  He refused to allow his people to vote for the Fighting Sioux nickname, using hardships as an excuse, because he was afraid that his people would vote to approve the nickname.  It was an issue that could have been resolved (for or against) at his reservation with almost no effort nor time commitment.  But, it was indefinitely tabled.

If President Kelley and the University Senate (and the nickname committee) weren't concerned about the "North Dakota" option winning out and instead was simply out there to come up with a short list of acceptable nicknames based upon the parameters laid out by the NCAA and public opinion, this whole broohaha wouldn't have occurred.  There's no harm in having it an option on the ballot if there's no concern about the option winning.

My Endorsement and Recommendation

I am and always will be FOR the no nickname option.  It became that way when they eliminated "Spirit" from contention.  Up until that point, I was willing to look at multiple options (like being happy with something other than just "North Dakota").

Inevitably, my highly cynical and pessimistic outlook predicts that this option will not be available.

So what should we do?

My opinion is this:  Vote for "NoDaks."  It's a lame nickname, sure.  It doesn't even roll off the tongue as well as other options, sure.  But it is the easiest to co-opt and ignore.  Yup.  Vote for NoDaks and simply continue calling us North Dakota.  We cannot expect anything good to come out of the merchandise department nor expect the media to follow our wishes.  The media, in this case, will cover the scandal aspect until that blows over and then simply call UND whatever the UND administration wants UND to be called.

We, as students and alumni (and perhaps staff and faculty as well) can only control what we can control.  Students will eventually become alumni and alumni can do what they feel must be done.  Either shrug their shoulders and move on, or simply stop giving money and time to UND.

I hope common sense prevails and the PC agenda fails.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Dave St. Peter on the 'No Nickname' Option for UND

If you haven't seen this, UND Nickname Committee member Dave St. Peter, Minnesota Twins president, gives his opinion on the North Dakota nickname option.

  Per Howard Sinker, Star Tribune.
St. Peter said he had two reasons for wanting to keep the no-nickname option. "I thought there was something incredibly powerful and unique about having the words 'North Dakota' stand alone without a nickname. I thought maybe this was a way to reinforce the heritage of the state. Others did not share it but it was something I got personally comfortable with watching our teams perform as 'North Dakota. The second reason was that it was clear to me from the constituency I represented (on the committee), the alumni base, felt very strongly about 'North Dakota' being an option -- and all of the public polling available seemed to indicate that North Dakota was clearly the popular choice. I wasn't comfortable eliminating it."

St. Peter added: "Some of the committee might disagree, but I think the politically correct thing to do was to eliminate 'North Dakota.' That was almost the sense I had, because of the connection to 'Fighting Sioux.' "

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

The Catch-22 of Political Entities aka Why the Nickname Committee is Doomed to Fail

by Redwing77

Goon asked me to turn my rather long winded comment into a blog post.  So, here it is, with a little more explanation:

It's sad that I say this about my alma mater but... I am beginning to think that this is Marquette all over again.

Brief Recap:  Marquette used to be known as the Warriors and were under as much (perhaps more) pressure to change the nickname.  The Board (including the University President) decided to change the nickname to "The Gold" away from the student and alumni supported nickname, "Golden Eagles."  The result was a firestorm of consternation and animosity towards the University by just about everyone.  Like typical politicians, the powers that be spoke of stunned confusion wondering why such a backlash ensued, as the nickname's unofficial nickname was "The Blue and Gold" and "The Gold" was simply a reference back to the school colors.  Needless to say, they quickly turned the nickname over to the alumni and students (they gave 10 options) and Golden Eagles was resumed.

The TRUTH:  The Fighting Sioux nickname is dead.  All those UND fans and alumni who say "Fighting Sioux forever" and other such claptrap are just flatout delusional.  I will side with the PC crowd in say "move on."  However, that's the ONLY thing I'll side with them about.

In any case, I wonder how much money UND is standing to lose over this whole thing.
It's funny.  Congresspeople often go against their constituency for a variety of reasons (usually due to special interest groups, riders on the bill that favors their constituency (see Bridge to Nowhere), or some sort of personal or party agenda) and though people gripe about it, they get over it because it may be for the better of the nation somehow and we, as the public, may not have all of the information they have.

This is NOT that case.  In the case of a nickname, it's an identity of the University's staff, faculty, students, athletes, and alumni (not to mention fans and supporting community) and it CAN be decided by popularity as long as the name that is selected follows the criteria set up by the overseeing body: in this case both the UND President and Board of Directors and the NCAA.

Sadly, at one point I looked up to Bridewell.  He was my advisor at UND and I really liked the man, but his comment in that article said it best:  "If we say no nickname, then Kelley might dissolve the committee."  The committee has tasted power and it has corrupted most of the committee.  This nickname is its legacy and they do not want to be seen as being sacrificed in the name of what the people want.  They want to make a change.  Let's call this "Myles Brand Syndrome."  They are making a change for the sake of making a change.  In political circles, it's called "political suicide." 

Not all of the committee is a farce, as you say.  There were a few, like St. Peters and Goehring, who understand what the TRUE purpose of the nickname committee is:  To produce a short, concise list of acceptable nicknames for the people to vote upon to help direct the future identity of the University.  Having UND/North Dakota on the ballot does not endanger the committee at all, as they'd also include their idiotic suggestions like Fighting Hawks (which I thought was eliminated from the final five), Sundogs, and the future lawsuit favorite North Stars.

Politically speaking, this is what the PC crowd tainted with liberalism truly represent.  The public at large is too clueless, racist, sexist, and ignorant to know what is best.  There needs to be an overriding authority to tell them what is best for them and to "guide" them towards "enlightenment."  Orwell, eat your heart out.

My guess that, if the vote isn't a hoax, people will now overwhelmingly vote in "NoDaks" and simply continue to use North Dakota.  It's what I'd do.

Sadly, I fear that the backlash will cost UND a LOT of money.  I wish I could find out how long Marquette was known as "The Gold" but it wasn't very long... perhaps less than 6 months.

So, Mr. Bridewell, what's better:  Be disbanded for standing up for what the public wants or being nullified in effigy a few months after your disasterous decision goes final when the University is forced to revisit the nickname due to massive loss of alumni support?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

President Kelley Will be Known for his Efforts on UND Nickname

There's a lot of news breaking on President Robert O. Kelley's retirement. Tom Dennis for the Herald has an interesting take on the Kelley retirement. One thing from Dennis' article that sticks out for me, Kelley's work on the Fighting Sioux nickname.
Tom Dennis, Grand Forks Herald -- First, there's the matter of the nickname and logo—in the case of Ben Brien's famous Fighting Sioux logo, the face of UND athletics.

UND's change to a new nickname and logo isn't yet complete. But it will be before many more months are out.

And when the new name and design finally are unveiled, Kelley will be there, as he'll be the author who'll get both the credit and the blame for this very significant chapter in the story of UND.
Right, wrong, or indifferent, Kelley will always be known for what he did and didn't do in regards to the Fighting Sioux nickname.

From my perspective, it appeared that Kelley wanted quickly to move away from the Fighting Sioux nickname. Honestly, he's no different than many progressives that make up college campuses. That's the nature of the academics. It's a very liberal field.

When I attended UND from 1993-1999, many of my professors railed against the Fighting Sioux nickname. I had one professor that called the Fighting Sioux nickname a red-faced minstrel. So, it's nothing new. Was it irritating to listen to. Yep.

Also, Kelley was accused of not putting up a fight to keep the Fighting Sioux nickname. Some have suggested he could have done some outreach to the Tribes and gotten approval to use the Fighting Sioux nickname. I don't know, but it appeared that Kelley wanted to move forward away from the Fighting Sioux nickname. Kelley is not the only one that wanted UND to drop the name.

Finally, I believe that UND had no choice but to move on and drop the Fighting Sioux nickname. With Kelley or without Kelley. If UND hadn't dropped the Fighting Sioux nickname, I don't think that there's any way that UND is in the Big Sky Conference. Moreover, the Summitt wasn't going to take UND with the Fighting Sioux nickname, either. It was a no win situation. Do I like the fact that the Fighting Sioux nickname is gone forever? Nope, not at all.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Grand Forks Herald: UND to pay some student athletes cost of attendance and some living expenses

For now, UND hockey (and 18 female athletes from a sport to be determined) will be the only UND sport that is going to give grant-in-aid to their student athletes. The NCHC schools are going to be giving  out money and UND is following suit.
Anna Burleson , Grand Forks Herald -- Athletic Director Brian Faison said concrete numbers will be available "soon," but the school is working to figure out how much it will cost to pay students with what they're calling "full amended grant-in-aid."

This will include tuition, mandatory fees, room and board, books, and personal expenses like transportation and it’s a trend Faison thinks all National Collegiate Hockey Conference schools will follow.

"We know we'll have it for the fall, we just don't exactly know what the dollar amounts are going to be yet,” he said.
UND and the Big Sky schools aren't going to give grant-in-aid to their other sports team, not yet at least. If the Big Sky decided to follow suit, that would require some series fun raising for UND and the member schools.
For now, Faison said the school has no intention to provide amended grant-in-aid to other sports because it isn’t necessary to be competitive with other schools.

“At this point nobody in our conference (Big Sky Conference) has indicated an interest in pursuing that at this juncture,” he said. “That doesn't mean they won't and we'll have to monitor that.”

Friday, April 17, 2015

Grand Forks Herald: Fighting Sioux supporters still fighting

This past week, a group of Native American from the Standing Rock and Spirit Lake Tribes started a new social media campaign. UND is transitioning away from the Fighting Sioux nickname and is currently in the process of picking a new one.
Anna Burleson , Grand Forks Herald -- Supporters of UND's former Fighting Sioux nickname have begun a social media campaign to revive the name.

A video titled "The Sioux Were Silenced" was posted to YouTube Monday, starring Eunice and David Davidson, two avid and vocal supporters of the old name which was retired in late 2012 after a long legal battle involving the NCAA, lawmakers, university donors and the State Board of Higher Education.

"We believe there was an agenda by certain leaders in the state to rid the University of North Dakota of the Fighting Sioux name and make sure the Sioux people receive the blame," David Davidson said in the video.

Eunice Davidson also penned the book "Aren't We Sioux Enough?" that chronicles the eventual retirement of the name.

Currently, UND is gathering new nickname suggestions from the public with the intent to hold a public vote to choose a permanent nickname. The school has been playing simply as "UND/North Dakota" since the Fighting Sioux logo was retired and there is a possibility of keeping that as a permanent name as well
. This same story has also been posted on the WDAZ site as well.
A second video was released Tuesday about the name granting ceremonies featuring two Standing Rock tribal members Archie Foolbear and Robert Gates and Spirit Lake Tribe member John Chaske. The two daughters of the tribal official involved in a 1969 name granting ceremony also speak on the topic.

In the introduction video, the Davidsons also blame the Grand Forks Herald and The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, both owned by Forum Communications Co., for printing slanted articles against the old nickname.

"Since we started this fight we have seen the media, largely controlled by one entity, put out a completely one-sided message," Eunice Davidson said in the video. "Well in today's world, we don't have to rely on traditional media to get the truth out. We want to tell you what really happened from the Sioux's perspective through social media."

A Facebook page has also been created for the cause that as of noon Thursday had 7,494 likes.