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5 Things to Know About New Vikings Cornerback Harrison Hand

EAGAN, Minn. — The Vikings drafted cornerback Harrison Hand in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL Draft with the 169th overall pick.

The 21-year-old opted to enter the NFL draft with a year of eligibility remaining after playing 2019 at Temple near his hometown of Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

Hand is just the second player ever drafted out of Temple by the Vikings, joining receiver Gerald Lucear, the 260th overall pick of the 1982 draft. Lucear did not play in the NFL.

Here are five things to know about the new Vikings cornerback:

1. Began college at Baylor

Hand was originally recruited to go to Temple by Matt Rhule (head coach of the Owls from 2013-16). When Rhule and his staff headed to Baylor in 2017, Hand did as well.

The cornerback overlapped with Vikings rookie James Lynch, whom Minnesota drafted in the fourth round, just 39 spots before the team picked Hand.

"That's my boy," Hand said of Lynch after his selection. "We go way back at Baylor since my freshman year. We were always linked like this and always talk, so that is a blessing to be a part of 'Vikings Nation' but also to be with my guy James Lynch."

After the draft, the Vikings also signed former Bears linebacker Blake Lynch (no relation to James) as an undrafted free agent.

Hand started 13 of 22 games for the Bears, totaling 55 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, an interception and 12 pass breakups while at Baylor. Those stats include 11 tackles and two pass breakups in his collegiate debut against Liberty.

2. Closer to home

After two seasons, Hand wanted to be closer to home. He was granted a hardship waiver by the NCAA to avoid having to sit out the 2019 season. Hand was able to transfer to Temple and play for Owls Co-Defensive Coordinator Fran Brown, who had been Baylor's assistant head coach/defensive backs coach under Rhule. Brown is now the defensive backs coach at Rutgers, and Rhule is head coach of the Carolina Panthers.

Hand started all 12 games for Temple last season, recording 59 tackles, 4.0 tackles for loss, three interceptions and five pass breakups.

3. Hit the books

A kinesiology major, Hand earned academic recognition in each of the past two years.

He was an Academic All-Big 12 Second Team honoree in 2018 and followed by becoming a member of the American Athletic Conference (AAC) Honor Roll in 2019.

4. He's 1 of 7 draft picks from 7-on-7 team

Hand is one of seven members of a 7-on-7 football team who was drafted this year.

Hand teamed on Team Vapor Speed with three first-round selections (Tua Tagovailoa, Jerry Jeudy and Jalen Reagor) and three second-round picks (Xavier McKinney, KJ Hamler and Cam Akers).

5. Football runs in the family

Hand is a cousin of three former college football players: Turk McBride (Tennessee), Antwine Perez (Maryland/USC) and Jamil Tyson (Towson). McBride was a second-round pick by the Chiefs in 2007 and started 24 of 66 games for Kansas City, Detroit and New Orleans.