The 19-year-old man shot inside the Morgan State University student center Wednesday was on campus visiting his cousin, a member of the school's football team, according to Baltimore police.

It was a football player who first spotted the victim, said Donald Hill-Eley, Morgan State's head football coach. The player, whom Hill-Eley would not identify, saw the victim collapse outside the student center, he said. The player described the victim as bleeding profusely from the mouth and torso.

Hill-Eley said Todd Smith, the school's head athletic trainer, treated the victim until medics arrived. Smith's actions saved the victim's life, Hill-Eley said.

"He applied pressure to the wound," he said. "Luckily, he had all his equipment, because he was coming from practice. He kept him responsive."

Smith could not be reached for comment.

The victim was not a student, according to university officials, who don't believe the shooter attended Morgan, either. Police have not made an arrest.

Although classes resumed Thursday, the school community remained shaken. About 100 people attended a rally beneath the iconic clock tower of Holmes Hall to take a stand against campus violence.

"We're showing the world we're not going to stand for this mess," said Kevin M. Banks, vice president for student affairs. He and others pointed out the need to maintain a welcoming but safe campus. "Who we invite to our community is our responsibility," he added.

Jillian Curry, a freshman at Morgan, attended the rally because she felt it was important for students to show that violence on campus will not be tolerated.

"I don't believe this incident should define Morgan. There are good things all around this campus," she said.

Others expressed concern that an apparent nonstudent was able to enter campus in the middle of the day and open fire in a public place.

At the event, some students wore an "X" made from orange duct tape.

The duct tape "shows anybody can be a target. This really could've happen to anybody," said freshman Chris Dickens.

Adrian J. Wiggins, recently named the chief public safety officer at Morgan, urged students to report any suspicious activity to police and contact officials if they feel unsafe.

"This is your campus. This is your school," he said.

Baltimore police spokesman Donny Moses said the department continued to investigate the Wednesday incident, and he offered no new information about suspects or motives. He said the victim was visiting but could not say why the man was in the student center.

Officers were called to the Northeast Baltimore campus about 4:15 p.m. Wednesday, and found the teen lying on the ground just outside the student center near the football field.

The wounded teen was taken to Johns Hopkins Hospital and remains in critical but stable condition. He has not been identified.

School spokesman Clint Coleman said the shooter knew the victim and that a verbal exchange was heard just before the shooting. He said the attack was "targeted."

The rally, organized by a student activist group called "X Assembly," began with a prayer, during which the crowd held hands to form a large circle around the academic quad.

"We needed people to come," said Marlon Garner, a group member and a junior at Morgan who warned that if students do not react to violent incidents, they will come to be accepted as a normal part of life. "What's the next generation going to do?"

jkanderson@baltsun.com

jbauerwolf@baltsun.com

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