It's smart because debt is cheap right now and so is the price of the stock (or it was at 7.00 per share). Once the stock price becomes fairly valued (now?) or overvalued they can start paying off the debt which will most likely remain cheap for a few years.
When the stock price was 18 and they were buying back stock instead of paying off debt, that was stupid. I think it was pushed by the board. People from Minnesota. Can't expect much more from them though as they elect all-star wrestlers and failed comedians to public office. All you need is a radio show in Minneapolis for a few months and people want to elect you to office. I think Bozo the Clown is next.