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Prairie Public to premiere television retrospective of two intense sports rivalries

FARGO, N.D., August 17, 2012 — Prairie Public is set to debut a new 90-minute television documentary that chronicles the great sports rivalries between North Dakota State University and the University of North Dakota in their division II days. “When They Were Kings: The NDSU-UND Rivalry” will premiere Tuesday, September 18, at 7 p.m. (CT). The documentary will rebroadcast on September 22 at 7 and 9 p.m. (CT).

The producer and writer of the documentary, Prairie Public’s Matt Olien, gathered stats and file footage that spanned two decades to compile information about the football rivalry. “NDSU won 12 games in a row from 1981 to 1992, and UND dominated the last decade — winning 10 of the last 13 games,” he said.

The UND and NDSU women’s basketball rivalry was equally intense — the teams combined to win eight of nine national titles between 1991 and 1999. Each year, Olien said, the Bison and Sioux seemed to hook up in crucial games to determine conference, regional and national supremacy.

In addition to archival video footage, the documentary is built upon reminiscences and analysis from key players and coaches, including Rocky Hager (NDSU Head Football Coach 1987-96), Roger Thomas (UND Head Football Coach 1986-98), Gene Roebuck (UND Women’s Basketball Coach 1987-2012), and Amy Ruley (NDSU Women’s Basketball Coach 1979-2008).

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