One-on-One with former MSU AD Mark Hollis Part 1

“A rock bottom moment in my life”
One-on-One interview with Mark Hollis on hitting rock bottom
Published: Sep. 2, 2020 at 6:37 PM EDT
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DETROIT, Mich. (WILX) - Former Michigan State University Athletic Director Mark Hollis says the COVID-19 pandemic gave him time to reflect on the 2 1/2 years since he stood before cameras and made the emotional announcement he would retire. It came in the midst of the Larry Nassar scandal, and the same day an ESPN report suggested Hollis and head football coach Mark Dantonio created a culture that covered up sexual assaults on campus.

In his first television interview, Hollis sat down with Ann Emmerich in downtown Detroit where he now lives and works. He explains why he’s been quiet and why he’s now opening up.

Ann Emmerich: “You have waited 2 1/2 years to do an interview, after you resigned from Michigan State. Why?”

Mark Hollis: “The reason why I was quiet not only while I was Athletic Director, but afterwards, had much to do with the process that led up to the reason that I chose to retire from college sports. As a leader, and you’re going through a situation like that, that you don’t have much control over, what was a rock bottom moment in my life. When do you talk? I don’t know when you talk. I don’t know if I’m ready, really to talk now.”

“But I think one of the biggest frustrations, is while I was Athletic Director, not having the opportunity to one, defend yourself, defend your integrity, things that I could somewhat manage, but then you look in the eyes of your wife and your daughter and your two boys and they don’t understand you know, the ins and outs of my work and to see the pain in their eyes.”

“I can’t imagine what a family felt like having a daughter that went through that horrible experience. At the same time, it’s hard to equate on the same par, but I went through many of the same emotions having the student athletes in that position and not being able to speak out on their defense or my own.”

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