Alabama star freshman forward Brandon Miller dropped a career-high 41 points in their 78-76 overtime road victory over SEC opponent South Carolina on Wednesday night. It was Miller’s first game he played in since the cops testified about his involvement in the murder of Jamea Jonae Harris.
The cops stated that Miller received a text that evening on Jan. 15 from now-ex-teammate Darius Miles requesting that Miller bring the gun, which was owned by Miles. Miller complied, and not long afterward Jones was shot dead by Miles’ companion Michael Davis, authorities say.
A few hours leading up to Wednesday’s game, Alabama released a statement that said, “Based on all the information we have received, Brandon Miller is not considered a suspect in this case, only a cooperative witness.”
Miller was cleared to play and no criminal charges were filed against him. That decision was met with backlash by South Carolina fans, but Miller didn’t let it bother him. He is still expected to be a lottery pick in the upcoming NBA draft this summer.
An anonymous NBA executive stated, “No impact at all NBA Draft wise.”
Another anonymous NBA scout said, “Love Brandon. If he’s not in any legal trouble, would love to have him.”
Miller’s Big Night
Miller was met with boos and chants from the crowd during pregame warmups, everytime he went to the free throw line, every time he touched the ball, or any other time there was a break in the action.
The crowd chanted “Lock Him Up” and “Guilty”, but he made the Gamecocks fans eat those words.
He was the only other Crimson Tide player to score in double figures, he scored 41 of the 78 total points, and he outscored two of the top three combined scorers from the Gamecocks. He surpassed Collin Sexton for the highest-scoring single game performance in Alabama history. Sexton dropped 40 points in a loss against Minnesota in 2017. Miller has the best and sixth-best single-game scoring performances in school history.
In addition to his 41-point performance, he also scored a layup to tie the game and send it to overtime. Then, in overtime he made the game-winning layup to secure the win.
Miller did not speak with media after the game, but his head coach Nate Oats did. He cleared up his handling of the situation and apologized for appearing not to be sensitive of the Harris slaying.
“I want to address yesterday’s press conference and my response to the Brandon Miller question. I’m not here to make excuses, but I want to make it clear that I didn’t have the details from the hearing that morning (Next day after shooting),’ said Oats. “I was coming straight from practice and I used a poor choice of words. I made it appear like I wasn’t taking this tragic situation seriously, which we have throughout the course of it. I sincerely apologize for that.”
He finished his statement by saying he didn’t have new information to share besides what is all there. No further action has been taken against Miller. Jamea Jonae Harris.
While that is good news for Miller, it’s bad news for the family and friends of Jamea Jonae Harris, whose life was taken due to poor decisions and irrational actions that can’t be celebrated.