Contract signed to renew UND-Minnesota rivalry

As expected, UND and Minnesota have officially signed a contract to renew the rivalry in 2016-17.

The sides had verbally agreed to this last month.

As reported at that time, the contract is for two years. In 2016-17, they will play in Mariucci Arena. In 2017-18, they will play in Ralph Engelstad Arena.

“This is a rivalry that our fans, alumni and team look forward to renewing,” said UND head coach Dave Hakstol. “It is one of the most heated in all of college sports.”

“We’re thrilled to officially get North Dakota back on our schedule and to renew one of the greatest rivalries in our sport,” Minnesota head coach Don Lucia said. “This rivalry is great for our programs, great for college hockey and great for our fans, and we’re excited to bring North Dakota back to Mariucci Arena.”

Here’s the story from about a month ago (and then I’m going back to bed):

Minnesota, UND agree to return of rivalry
Author: Brad Elliott Schlossman; Herald Staff Writer
Article Text:

One of the great college hockey rivalries won’t be dormant for long.

North Dakota and Minnesota have verbally agreed to renew the rivalry series in 2016-17, a source confirmed to the Herald.

Contracts are in the process of being drawn up. When they are completed and signed, an announcement is expected.

The agreement is for the teams to play a pair of two-game series. The first one, in 2016-17, will be played in Minneapolis. The following year, the teams will play in Grand Forks.
Those matchups will end a three-year stretch without a regular-season series between the longtime rivals who played every year from 1948 to 2013.

The break in the rivalry is happening, in large part, as a result of the teams moving into separate conferences.

The charter Western Collegiate Hockey Association members both have moved into startup leagues this season. UND will play in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. Minnesota will play in the Big Ten.

The teams were unable to nail down a nonconference agreement immediately.

One of the hurdles was UND’s Fighting Sioux nickname.

Minnesota said it could not schedule UND because of a school policy against playing teams with Native American nicknames.

That hurdle has been removed.

The last meeting between the teams was a 4-4 tie on January 19 in Mariucci Arena. Their last meeting in Grand Forks came in January 2012.

UND now has lined up nonconference series against three Big Ten programs.
It has a four-year agreement with the University of Wisconsin starting in 2014-15 and a two-year agreement with Michigan State.

This season, UND’s nonconference games are against Vermont, Boston University, St. Lawrence, Northern Michigan and Bemidji State.

19 thoughts on “Contract signed to renew UND-Minnesota rivalry

  1. I really believe that series put so much stress on Don that he couldn’t grow a proper mullet anymore and needed some time off to see if he could grow that lettuce out to proper mullet status.

  2. Brad, do you have any knowledge about the series with Wisconsin and Minnesota extending beyond the respective four and two year contracts? I would hate to see a two-year serious followed by another four years off.

  3. If neither Hakstol nor Lucia bring home a national banner by then, they may not be around for the games. Remember Gasparini and Woog?

    • If coaches maintain success, they will stick around. If they don’t, they won’t. Gasparini won three national championships, but in the end, he was still let go. The titles didn’t matter when UND missed the NCAAs four years in a row (six times in seven years) and had a losing record three years in a row. Woog wasn’t let go because he didn’t win a national title, he was let go because Minnesota started finishing under .500 and missing the NCAAs.

      • Disagree. UND and UM hockey fans are an impatient lot. Every time Hakstol’s teams have stumbled in the playoffs, the chorus of “Fire him!” grows louder, as more maintain he can’t win the big games. This is not New Hampshire and Dick Umile, who survives despite no banner over the years. To fans who have tasted a championship, a big regular season record and an invite to the 16 isn’t enough.

        • Gene, if you’re unhappy with Hak start a collection, because it’s going to cost a lot of money to remove him as head coach… If Hak is fired, that’s a very big if, and then you’re probably going to lose a lot of the recruits that are currently committed to UND. If you don’t believe me, look what happened to Denver. I predict that Dave Haksol will leave when he decides and under his terms. I would predict that Hakstol isn’t going anywhere and UND will win a title very soon. All the naysayers will be running to catch up to jump on the Hakstol bandwagon, once he wins the big one.

          • I still find it ridiculously funny when Sioux Nation Fans call for Haks’ head every year they dont win a National Title. This is not the Stanley Cup Playoffs best of 7 series we are playing here people. If it were I’m guessing there would be more than a couple extra banners hanging from the Beautiful Rafter @ the Ralph! When its a one and done type deal the odds start shifting away from the favorites and with the parity in college hockey these days it is very hard to accomplish that singular goal UND strives for each season.. With that said, all of those nay-sayers need to keep their mouth shut and let ol’ hak and the boys keeo their hard hats on and continue to go to work, it will pay off! Mark this Sioux Fan’s words

          • I’m not unhappy with him; I don’t even know him. Saw him last year at the Toasted Frog and wished him luck in the Notre Dame series. I’m just speaking from history. I don’t post on jockey blogs but I read both the UND and UofM. Tough crowd…makes the French Revolution look tame

            As for parity…definitely. Yale’s success was interesting. I think the powerhouses have so become uncompensated minor league teams for the pros, a team with a bunch of upperclassmen like Yale has a chance now.

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