Khyree Jackson was killed in an automobile accident on Friday night, according to multiple reports. The rookie cornerback’s agent and former high school coach confirmed the tragic news to The Oregonian’s James Crepea.

Jackson, 24, is a former Oregon and Alabama defensive back. He began his career at Fort Scott (Kan.) Community College, then played at East Mississippi C.C. in 2020, and spent 2 seasons in Tuscaloosa with the Crimson Tide. Ahead of the 2023 season, he transferred to Oregon, where he became an immediate starter and a crucial contributor to the Ducks’ 12-win season.

He was drafted in the fourth round of the 2024 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings.

“I am absolutely crushed by this news,” Vikings coach Kevin O’Connell said in a statement. “Khyree brought a contagious energy to our facility and our team. His confidence and engaging personality immediately drew his teammates to him. In our short time together, it was evident Khyree was going to develop into a tremendous professional football player, but what was more impressive was his desire to become the best person he could be for his family and those around him. I am at a loss for words. My heart goes out to Khyree’s family, friends, teammates and coaches.”

Jackson’s path to the NFL was a winding one. In 2017 and 2018, he was working at a grocery store. “For a bit of a second, football had gotten a little foggy,” Jackson told reporters after he was drafted. But he eventually found his way back to football and became one of the top JUCO prospects in the country.

He played in 21 games across 2 seasons for Alabama (2021-22), making one start in the 2021 national championship game against Georgia and recording 14 tackles. He moved to Oregon for an expanded role and eventually won a starting job at corner.

Jackson started 12 games for the Ducks in 2023 and was selected as a first-team All-Pac-12 corner. He posted 34 tackles, 5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, 7 pass breakups, and 3 interceptions. He was tied for fourth in the Pac-12 in passes defended and tied for second in interceptions.

According to Crepea, Jackson was traveling with former Dr. Henry Wise Jr. High School teammates Anthony Lytton Jr. and Isaiah Hazel at the time of the accident. Lytton and Hazel were also killed. Lytton played at Florida State and Penn State. Hazel played at Maryland and Charlotte.