Hollins recovering, plans on returning to football, says father

By Jerry Ratcliffe

A recent photo of Brenda Hollins and her son, Mike, as he continues recovering at the UVA Medical Center.

While he will likely not like it, Virginia running back Mike Hollins, one of the survivors of last Sunday night’s shootings, has been branded a hero.

Hollins, a junior from Baton Rouge, La., helped fellow UVA students off a bus as Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. opened fire with a handgun, killing three of Hollins’ football teammates and wounding others. Once off the bus, Hollins noticed that not everyone had exited, so he returned onto the bus, knowing the possible risk.

That’s when Jones, also a UVA student, aimed the gun at Hollins, who turned and tried to run. He was shot in the back.

Hollins was rushed to the hospital and underwent two surgeries, but now has improved, is walking on his own (see attached video) and is expected to fully recover in two-to-three months, according to his father, Mike Hollins Sr.

The senior Hollins told The Athletic that his son will likely be discharged from the University of Virginia Medical Center this weekend or sometime during the week.

He also said that his son plans to continue his football career.

“He’ll be fully recovered,” Hollins Sr. said. “He’s not going to stop playing football. It’s not in him. He’s not a quitter.”

Hollins, who was very close to one of the victims, D’Sean Perry, turned his game up a notch late in the season, particularly against nationally-ranked North Carolina on Nov. 5. He rushed a season-high 16 times for a season-high 75 yards in that game. In his last game, Virginia fell behind early against Pitt and abandoned the running game. Still, he had 8 carries for 23 yards.

His mother, Brenda, told one news outlet that when her son was still on a ventilator and couldn’t talk a few days ago, he wasn’t aware that his three teammates, Perry, Lavel Davis Jr. and Devin Chandler, had died.

He wrote on a piece of paper, asking how they were and his mom, at least at that time, didn’t have the heart to tell him because of his condition.