NBA Draft

2023 NBA Draft: Alabama’s Brandon Miller ready to turn pro after a season filled with controversy

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After an impressive season in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, young Brandon Miller is set to enter the 2023 NBA Draft. The freshman star has told ESPN this Thursday that his first year with the Crimson Tide will be his last. 

However, we can’t help but mention that beside shining on college basketball courts, the player has been involved in many controversies dealing with guns, death and subsequently, a great deal of public scrutiny.

The college player of the year led all freshmen in scoring, as he averaged 18.8 points per game and guided the Crimson Tide through the SEC regular season and championship title.

“God, my family, my fans and all the coaches at the University of Alabama,” Miller answered when asked who he was thankful at this time in his life.

In spite of all the success on court, it hasn’t been an easy year for the young star. Just this past January, he was linked with the death of 23-year-old Jamea Jonae Harris, after the police testimony said Miller transported former teammate Darius Miles’ gun which was reportedly used in the murder scene.

The student’s attorney, Jim Standridge sent out a statement last month explaining that the young player “never saw the handgun” that belonged to Miles, who has been charged with capital murder ever since.

“On January 14th, Brandon played in a basketball game in the afternoon and later was asked by Darius Miles for a ride to the Strip area to go to a nightclub,” the statement read.

“Mr. Miles brought his legal handgun and left it in the backseat of Brandon’s vehicle. Brandon never saw the handgun nor handled it. Further, it is our understanding that the weapon was concealed under some clothing in the back seat of his car.”

Standridges’ statement also explained that Miller never went to the nightclub, he instead went to get some food. Later, Miles asked his friend to pick him up in a different location and texted Miller “to bring him his firearm.”

Miller has not been charged with a crime, so he was able to continue his basketball career

The future NBA player has not been charged with a crime, but the university has kept him close as they’ve said he is not a suspect, but a cooperating witness. This means the freshman has been able to continue to play, a decision made by both the college administration and his head coach Nate Oats.

“We’ve been taking it very seriously from day one. The first minute that I got the information, I called [athletic director] Greg [Byrne], and we talked about it and the severity of it,” coach Oats said before March Madness. “Greg, I thought, did a great job addressing those comments, and I really don’t have much to add to it.

“We feel like we’ve done the right thing in this case. So I’m going to leave it at that with Greg’s comments.”

Miller is the No. 3 prospect on ESPN’s latest mock draft, but expects to make a final push to take the second spot after french sensation Victor Wembanyama.