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Former Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett, who went on to play seven seasons in the NFL, died Tuesday, according to the school district where he coached high school football. He was 35.

“It is with great sadness that we share the loss of Coach Ryan Mallett,” White Hall School District said in a statement. “Coach Mallett was a beloved coach and educator. We ask that you remember his family, team, students, fellow coaches, and the White Hall School District staff in your prayers.”

Mallett began his college career at Michigan before transferring to Arkansas, where he started a combined 26 games in 2009 and 2010. As a redshirt sophomore in 2009 under coach Bobby Petrino, he led the Razorbacks to an 8-5 record and win in the Liberty Bowl, for which he earned Offensive MVP honors.

His best season came in 2010, when he threw for 3,869 yards and 32 touchdowns and earned second-team All-SEC honors for a second straight year. He finished seventh in voting for the 2010 Heisman Trophy.

“Our @RazorbackFB family lost an incredibly special person today,” Arkansas athletic director Hunter Yurachek wrote on Twitter. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends and teammates of Ryan Mallett. #OneRazorback”

The New England Patriots selected Mallett in the third round of the 2011 NFL draft, at No. 74 overall. Coach Bill Belichick explained at the time that the team could never have enough depth at quarterback, which led to them selecting Mallett as one of Tom Brady’s backups.

“We just felt like he was a good player. He’s won everywhere he’s been — high school, college. He’s an impressive guy to talk to,” Belichick said at the time.

Belichick detailed how the Patriots had followed Mallett’s college career, starting at Michigan in 2007, and then when he transferred to Arkansas as a result of a new Wolverines coaching staff installing a different offense. At Arkansas, Belichick noted how Mallett effectively operated in a pro-style offense under Petrino, saying in 2011: “He’s pretty far along relative to some other quarterbacks we’ve seen.”

Mallett played just 24 snaps as a backup to Brady in New England, a result of Brady’s durability and seldom coming out of games. He was traded to the Houston Texans ahead of the 2014 season, where he spent time as both a starter and backup before he was released in October 2015 and subsequently signed with the Baltimore Ravens, for whom he played through 2017.

“The New England Patriots are deeply saddened to learn of the sudden and unexpected passing of former quarterback Ryan Mallett,” the team said in a statement. “Our thoughts are with the Mallett family, his former teammates and all who are mourning his loss.”

Mallett appeared in 21 NFL games for his career, making eight starts. He passed for 1,835 yards, with 9 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

He was hired as the head football coach at White Hall High School in 2022 after beginning his coaching career as an assistant at Mountain Home High School.

“I always knew I was going to coach,” Mallett said after he was named the coach at White Hall, according to the Arkansas Democrat Gazette. “It’s just natural for me. I understand it. I get how everything works, and then I just love football. You get to teach kids the right way at a young age, and that’s something I really enjoy.”

ESPN’s Mike Reiss contributed to this report.

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Former Arkansas, NFL QB Ryan Mallett dies at 35