Brandon Miller has had a rough go of it lately, but that hasn’t stopped him from balling out at Alabama. While he has been playing well and certainly has been rewarded for it, the woman who lost her life as a result of some of his actions is still in the back of his mind.
The Crimson Tide forward and potential lottery draft pick finally spoke about the situation and the woman, Jamea Harris, who was gunned down on Jan. 15 in a shooting that led to murder charges against his teammate Darius Miles and Miles’ friend Michael Davis.
“I never lose sight of the fact that a family has lost one of their loved ones that night,” Miller told reporters on March 8. “This whole situation is just really heartbreaking. Respectfully, that’s all I’m gonna be able to say on that.”
Miller reportedly told police he had possession of Miles’ gun before his teammate texted him that night asking for it to be brought to a sports bar parking lot. Investigators say Miles told Davis where the gun was in Miller’s car after the star freshman arrived at the scene, and Davis retrieved it before using it shoot Harris.
Miller, who originally wasn’t being approached by law enforcement for his part in the crime committed, eventually became a person of interest to police. He was not charged with a crime, more so the police wanted him to be cooperative to help gain more information about the murder, which Miller obliged.
Brandon Miller Named SEC Player of the Year
Throughout the whole fiasco, Miller was still getting into his bag on the court, averaging 19.6 points and eight rebounds per game while shooting over 45 percent from the field as well. Alabama is a potential No. 1 seed for the NCAA Tournament. Along with the team success, Miller has also been named SEC Player of the Year.
Many are wondering how Miller can simply just go out there and play at the level he does with a woman’s death on his conscience, and while Miller has never publicly expressed why he has been so successful under these circumstances, he has expressed remorse for the situation while being very careful not to implicate himself or tarnish his name any further in the court of public opinion.
Brandon Miller Finally Speaks About Jamea Harris
But with Miller finally speaking out, it shows that he knows he has an obligation to give some kind of statement fans and family members. Although his thoughts on Harris and her slaying were brief because he probably couldn’t speak much on it, it’s better than what his coach Nate Oats said earlier about Miller.
Oats originally said that Miller was at “the wrong spot at the wrong time,” and though he later apologized for those comments, they were taken very seriously. This time around, the Tide coach stuck to basketball in his presser, trying to avoid controversy.
But Oats did try to assure the fans and media that his star player has in fact “taken this whole situation very seriously from day one.”
“It’s a tough situation for all of us,” Oats said at the news conference. “It’s just sad, to be honest with you. I never thought Brandon was flippant with any of it, ever.”
From here on out Miller and Oats will look to choose their words wisely, because they will have to deal with this tragedy as they navigate through a high-pressure NCAA Tournament as one of the favorites. As they win and attract the attention of the basketball world, more questions will arise from more people who won’t let Miller or Alabama forget Jamea Jonae Harris.