As the men’s college basketball season heads toward the start of the NCAA tournament, one thing has become clear to players, coaches, pundits and fans who are catching up before they fill out their brackets: Brandon Miller is having a standout year. The standout freshman guard is considered one of the best college basketball players in the country and the go-to guy for an Alabama Crimson Tide team that will likely be a No. 1 seed and aim for its first Final Four in school history. Miller is projected to be a top-5 pick in this year’s NBA draft.
But the 20-year-old phenom has faced questions in recent weeks after he was linked in court to a fatal shooting of a woman in downtown Tuscaloosa in January. A detective with the Tuscaloosa police department testified last month that Miller delivered a gun to then-teammate Darius Miles, who then handed the firearm to Michael Lynn Davis, a friend of Miles’s who is not associated with the university. Police say Davis shot into a vehicle and killed 23-year-old Jamea Jonae Harris on Jan. 15. Miles, 21, and Davis, 20, have been charged with capital murder.
Miller has not been charged, is not considered a suspect and has been a cooperating witness to police, according to the university, which has faced heavy blowback for taking no disciplinary action against the freshman. Jim Standridge, Miller’s attorney, has denied the claims, saying in a statement that his client does not own a gun and “never touched the gun” used in the killing. Miller spoke for the first time about the shooting on Wednesday, saying it was “really heartbreaking.”
Before March Madness gets underway, here’s what to know about one of college basketball’s finest players and his link to an ongoing capital murder case: