University of North Dakota President Charles Kupchella says he wants to make sure the school’s athletes are treated with respect when the men’s hockey team faces Dartmouth College later this month.
Kupchella said he sent a letter to Dartmouth on Thursday, calling its athletic director’s criticism of UND’s Fighting Sioux nickname offensive and wrong.“I don’t think they have a clue,” Kupchella said. “I think this was done without any knowledge of what we do here.” …
“We have three times as many American Indian students as they do, yet they have written in their charter that they’re supposed to serve American Indian students,” he said.
UND is one of several schools whose use of American Indian imagery has been labeled “hostile and abusive” by the NCAA. The school is suing the NCAA to challenge the ruling.
Dartmouth dropped its own American Indian nickname, the “Dartmouth Indians,” in the early 1970s and became known as the “Big Green.”
“Some folks who have been strident opponents of the nickname say if we just get rid of the name, racism and insensitive behavior goes away,” Kupchella told KNOX radio in Grand Forks. “Well, here’s a case where a university did change its name 30 years ago and they’re apparently having more problems that we ever had.”
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