NDSU Athletic Director Reacts to UND’s Move from Big Sky

Bison and Fighting Hawks will compete in the same conference beginning in 2018-19

The University of North Dakota announced Thursday it will join North Dakota State in the Summit League beginning in the 2018-19 season. UND will compete in the Summit in numerous sports, including basketball, golf, soccer, swimming and diving, track and field, tennis and volleyball.

The Fighting Hawks will also compete in the Missouri Valley Football Conference beginning in 2020.

North Dakota State, which has been a part of the Summit League since 2007 and MVFC since 2008, will now play its in-state rival in conference play for each of the sports making the change.

NDSU Athletic Director Matt Larsen says adding the Fighting Hawks will benefit the conference.

“From a Summit League standpoint, we’ve been looking for a 10th member for a while to get to that even number,” Larsen said over the phone. “It just makes sense it terms of travel and budget to add that 10th team.”

Larsen acknowledged the rivalry between the two schools, but doesn’t think the Bison will be affected much by the addition of UND into the Summit and MVFC.

“Out fans come out and support NDSU regardless of the opponent,” Larsen said. “I think this could be a great in the years to come, but Bison Nation will continue to come out and support NDSU regardless of who they’re playing.”

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