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Josh Brent had gotten his life in order, Ron Zook says

Ron Zook was in shock after learning of the tragic incident involving his former Illinois players, Josh Brent and Jerry Brown Jr. Brown was killed in an auto accident early Saturday morning when Brent hit a curb and flipped his car, and Brent was arrested on an intoxication manslaughter charge.

Zook said the two Dallas Cowboys players were living together.

"I had just talked to (Brent's) agent a couple weeks ago about how Josh was doing and doing great," Zook, the former Illini coach, told NFL.com's Ian Rapoport. "Living a model life. Jerry was living with him. Keeping his nose clean, he wasn't spending money, he wasn't going out. He was just ... really, we felt like he had finally grown up and grown through that and was just doing a great job.

"I know he's devastated right now. Talking to his agent, who he was very close to. He was mentoring Jerry, helping Jerry through some tough things. Just a shame."

Brent was pulling Brown from the burning 2007 Mercedes when police arrived on the scene of Saturday's accident.

Follow Kareem Copeland on Twitter @kareemcopeland.

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