ND vote lets school scrap Fighting Sioux nickname

Group supporting mascot plans another vote in the fall

Voters have approved a measure that lets the University of North Dakota dump its controversial Fighting Sioux nickname.

The vote sends the matter back to the state’s Board of Higher Education, which is expected to retire the moniker and American Indian head logo.

The NCAA has deemed the nickname hostile and abusive and has placed the university under postseason sanctions.

Advocates for retiring the nickname say the issue is hurting the athletic department in recruiting and scheduling. Supporters of the name say coaches and administrators are exaggerating the harmful effects and don’t believe the NCAA sanctions are a big deal.

The group that collected petitions for the ballot measure has said it will pursue another vote in the fall to make Fighting Sioux part of the state constitution.