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Published November 10, 2009, 04:34 PM

Board President Calls Order 'Bizarre'

Board president Richie Smith says the board was not consulted before the judge granted a request for a restraining order.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The president of North Dakota's Board of Higher Education says a judge's order on the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux nickname is "bizarre."

Northeast District Judge Michael Sturdevant has barred the board from changing the nickname before a Dec. 9 court hearing in Devils Lake.

Board president Richie Smith says the board was not consulted before the judge granted a request for a restraining order. The request came from a group of Spirit Lake Sioux tribal members.

The tribal members say UND cannot take any action to change the name for another year. They also contend the board has no authority to ask the tribes for a 30-year agreement to use the name.

Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem is holding a meeting with Smith and board attorney Pat Seaworth on Thursday to discuss the case.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.

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