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Grafton teen and two-time world boxing champ part of successful Grafton Golden Gloves Boxing

Grafton teen and two-time world boxing champ part of successful Grafton Golden Gloves Boxing

GRAFTON, N.D. -- At 5 feet 2 inches tall and 119 pounds, Damon Reyes is a soft-spoken, well-mannered 13 year old. But throw him in a boxing ring with someone his size and age, and "Demon" comes out. "Damon, we call him Demon," said his coach Freddy Narro, who owns and runs Grafton Golden Gloves Boxing. "Damon's top notch." Damon, who trains with Narro, has two Ringside world titles to his name. Of his 73 fights, he has only lost 15. He doesn't even lift weights yet.

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UND nickname committee talks priorities

UND nickname committee talks priorities

Details of process still undecided
GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- The University of North Dakota’s New Nickname Committee spent much of its first meeting discussing what kinds of attributes the school's new nickname and logo should have as it got its marching orders to narrow the list to three names by May for a public vote. At the meeting Tuesday, UND President Robert Kelley tasked the group with electronically gathering nickname suggestions from the public, narrowing down the list and then letting the public vote on a permanent name.

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Demand for Bison gear brings licensing headaches

Demand for Bison gear brings licensing headaches

FARGO, N.D. - As the Bison continue to perform well, it becomes more difficult for North Dakota State University to keep up with individuals trying to sell unlicensed green and gold products. Every year Licensing Resource Group has worked with NDSU, “it’s gotten worse and worse,” said LRG regional brand manager Joe Sheeley. Sheeley’s company chases down makers who haven’t undergone the licensing process – a job that has gotten significantly more challenging since the Bison won their first NCAA Division I FCS national championship in 2012. Nothing sells gear like a winning team, which means sales of Bison products, licensed or not, have been rising rapidly.

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As Bison gain in popularity, the media coverage intensifies

FARGO, N.D. – The play was maybe 20 yards from where David Samson sat with his camera and a telephoto lens the size of a grenade launcher. Suddenly, NDSU quarterback Carson Wentz rushed untouched toward the end zone during last Saturday’s national quarterfinal playoff game at the Fargodome. Almost as suddenly, the veteran Forum photographer grabbed a standby camera with a squat wide-angle lens just in time to capture Wentz’s scamper and the team’s ensuing celebration, then danced away to avoid being trampled by the growing herd.

Love of people, sports behind bus trips to big games

FARGO, N.D. – Mike Schmitz watched from Bismarck as the North Dakota State University Bison football team beat the Golden Gophers in 2007. “We should be at that game,” he thought. In 2008, Schmitz started Midwest Sports Tours, bringing groups of fans to occasional Minnesota Vikings games, University of North Dakota hockey matches or concerts at the State Fair in Minot. He arranges the transportation, hotels and tailgating. “The premise is, you get on, you don’t worry about anything,” said Schmitz, who is also general manager of the North Dakota Horse Park.

Superfans, Frisco tickets in hand, ride Bison roller coaster

FARGO, N.D. – If North Dakota State University wins Friday night’s FCS football semifinal against Sam Houston State, you can count on a stampede for tickets to Frisco, Texas. But don’t count on seeing superfans like Patrick Thiel in line. Those staunch Bison faithful bought their playoff tickets long ago. Some have even booked hotels and plane tickets, counting on the Herd getting a shot at a title four-peat on Jan. 10. “We got tickets in August. I got a buddy in the (Twin) Cities who said, ‘Anybody interested in investing in some tickets?’ And I said, ‘Yeah. Let’s do it,’ ” said Thiel, who teaches at Fargo’s Carl Ben Eielson Middle School.

UND nickname task force posts work online

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- The University of North Dakota’s nickname task force has started drafting its plan to pick a permanent nickname online where the public can watch the progress, but there have been a few technological obstacles. The Nickname and Logo Process Recommendation Task Force began posting its first documents Monday and will continue to work on them until they present UND President Robert Kelley with the final plan some time before Dec. 31.

UND tries to unite groups in nickname debate

UND tries to unite groups in nickname debate

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- At a well-attended task force meeting with community members in Grand Forks last month, several people spoke to the crowd about the need for the Univeristy of North Dakota to move on from the days of the Fighting Sioux and pick a new nickname. But those people stood in contrast to those who sat dressed in Fighting Sioux hats and jackets, including a small group gathered in the back of the room. While they brought books in favor of the old nickname titled, "Aren't We Sioux Enough?" and set them on a table, they were placed on the floor by event coordinators. Frank Burgraff, a vocal supporter of the Fighting Sioux name for years and UND hockey player in the 1980s, stood quietly and surveyed the room. "Silence does not constitute consent," he said. "There's no avenue for anybody to express themselves. I couldn't get up and say, 'I'd like to say some words.' They put us in the corner."

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Task force outlines plan to pick new UND nickname

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Sue Jeno started to cry when she was asked whether she thought UND should pick a new nickname. "I just want to do it right," she said, choking back tears. "I don't want to look back and say we were wrong." At a meeting Wednesday, Jeno and the rest of the University of North Dakota New Nickname and Logo Process Recommendation Task Force voted to continue to move forward in selecting a new nickname for the institution. The group developed the skeleton of a plan that involves appointing another committee as soon as possible that will ultimately decide on the next nickname. The finalplan, which the group is still working on, will be presented to UND President Robert Kelley by Dec. 31.

An amazing, cold adventure: Minnesota woman, South Dakota native, goes on Antarctica marathon run

An amazing, cold adventure: Minnesota woman, South Dakota native, goes on Antarctica marathon run

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- Heather Carr finished the race. And that's all she cared about. The Eden Prairie, Minn., resident and Mitchell, S.D., native was one of 53 people to complete the 2014 Antarctic Ice Marathon in November at Union Glacier Camp in Antarctica. It was Carr's fifth marathon, and she was one of 10 women to run the race. She finished with a time of 8 hours, 6 minutes, 10 seconds. "Overall, I was pleased with how I ran," Carr said following her trip. "My only real goal was to simply finish the race, and I did. A street marathon would typically take me about 4.5 hours." She took a 10-day trip to Antarctica, which cost about $16,000. Carr arrived in Chile on Nov. 15, where the participants had meetings about safety on Antarctica. Several days later, the group took a 4 1/2-hour flight to Union Glacier Camp, where the half marathon, marathon and 100K, which is about 62 miles, took place.

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Twin Cities stakeholders chime in on UND nickname transition

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – There is plenty of passion behind the University of North Dakota nickname debate, even in Minnesota Golden Gopher territory. A group of UND alumni and other stakeholders convened in the ballroom at the Hilton Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport Mall of America for a town hall meeting to give input on the nickname decision process. UND nickname task force member Karl Goehring moderated the meeting, along with UND spokesman Peter Johnson. Just as previous town hall meetings in Grand Forks and across North Dakota have revealed multiple opinions regarding how the school should move forward, the people in attendance also had varying ideas on the subject.

NFL suspends Vikings star Adrian Peterson for at least rest of season

Adrian Peterson was notified by the league Tuesday morning that he has been suspended without pay for at least the remainder of the 2014 NFL season. Peterson will be considered for reinstatement "on or around April 15," according to a letter from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

Virtual town hall meeting brings UND nickname debate to five N.D. cities

Virtual town hall meeting brings UND nickname debate to five N.D. cities

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- The University of North Dakota’s New Nickname and Logo Task Force invited participants in five North Dakota cities and online viewers to a Monday night virtual town hall meeting. Locations in Grand Forks, Minot, Bismarck, Fargo and Williston hosted small forums of people who were connected via video conference to provide input on ideas regarding a post-Fighting Sioux UND, including ideas for a new nickname and logo, and how to go about implementing a process for instating them.

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Dakota Bowl won’t be back to Grand Forks until at least 2021

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Today’s Dakota Bowl state championship football games won’t be back at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks until at least 2021 — and likely longer. The Fargodome is slated to be the home for the title games for North Dakota’s four high school classes over the next six years, after alternating years with the Alerus. It’s all about the money, said Matt Fetsch, the executive director of the North Dakota High School Activities Association. He said the 2013 Dakota Bowl in Fargo showed a profit of almost $60,000, compared with the $27,000 a year earlier in Grand Forks. Percentage-wise, the profit gaps have been similar in previous years.

Alumni should be a big part of picking new UND nickname

Alumni should be a big part of picking new UND nickname

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- Attendees at a meeting to start the process of selecting a new nickname for the University of North Dakota thought alumni should have a big say in what moniker is finally selected as they make up the largest group of stakeholders. Students, UND employees, alumni and donors gathered at an open forum Thursday evening to help UND’s Nickname and Logo Task Force develop the process that will be used to pick a new moniker for the school.

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