DENTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Utah star freshman running back and former West Mesquite High School player Ty Jordan died from a gunshot wound at an apartment in Denton on Christmas Day, officials confirmed.

Although his manner of death has not been released by the Tarrant County Medical Examiner, police said they responded to a shooting that was believed be accidental at the same time and address where Jordan was shot.

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Police said the incident happened late Friday evening in the 1100 block of Avenue B, where a single gunshot victim was found. “Following a preliminary investigation, it is believed the gun was accidentally discharged by the victim,” police said in a tweet.

Jordan’s cause of death was ruled as a gunshot wound to the abdomen.

The 19-year-old was named the Pac-12’s newcomer of the year last week after finishing the season with 597 yards rushing, 11 catches for 126 yards and six touchdowns as a freshman. He also made strong impressions while playing at West Mesquite High School.

“Words cannot express the devastation and heartache that our team is feeling right now upon learning of the tragic death of our teammate and brother, Ty Jordan,” Utah Head Football Coach Kyle Whittingham said in a statement.

Back in August, Jordan tweeted that his mother died after a battle with cancer.

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Some of Jordan’s Utah teammates tweeted out their condolences on Saturday.

“Wow! This one hurts R.I.P lil bro #LLTJ,” Utah running back Devin Brumfield said.

“Rest In Peace Ty. Can’t believe your gone. Grateful our lives crossed paths. You will forever be missed,” Utah quarterback Jake Bentley said.

A friend and former teammate, Gage Smith, told CBS 11 News he wants Jordan to be remembered for his legacy off the field.

“Seeing the type of person that kid is and seeing his heart for other people, that’s what I want people to remember about him… As good as he was, you would want to remember the type of person he is,” Smith said.

Smith and Jordan went viral on social media after a picture was posted of the two of them on different teams in high school kneeling in prayer for Jordan’s mother during her battle.

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Sherman High School football player Gage Smith (R) prays with West Mesquite’s Ty Jordan (L). (Credit: Takka Jordan/Facebook)

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CBSDFW.com Staff