Alabama’s Brandon Miller wins SEC Player of the Year amid controversy


Alabama’s Brandon Miller was named the Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year in the Southeastern Conference on Monday in voting by the 14 men’s basketball head coaches in the league.

The postseason accolades came despite Miller’s alleged connection to the murder case involving former teammate Darius Miles.

Miles and another man, Michael Lynn Davis, have been charged with capital murder in the death of 23-year-old Jamea Jonae Harris, who was fatally shot on Jan. 15 near the Alabama campus. An investigator working the case, Branden Culpepper, said two weeks ago that Miller delivered the gun allegedly used in the shooting to Miles at his request.

Miller has not been charged in the case, and fourth-ranked Alabama (26-5, 16-2 SEC) has continued to allow him to play.

The 6-foot-9 forward from Antioch, Tenn., a projected lottery pick, started all 30 regular-season games for the Crimson Tide in the regular season and averaged 19.6 points and 8.0 rebounds per game. He shot 40.4 percent from 3-point range.

Notably, Miller was not included among the 15 nominees for the Wooden Award, presented annually to the best men’s college basketball player. Among the qualifications for a nomination are requirements regarding academic progress and grades, being a team player and exhibiting “strength of character, both on and off the court.”

Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe was the only SEC player nominated for a Wooden Award, and he joined Miller in earning a first-team All-SEC nod.

Other first-team honorees are: Colin Castleton, Florida; Tolu Smith, Mississippi State; Kobe Brown, Missouri; Santiago Vescovi, Tennessee; Wade Taylor IV, Texas A&M; and Liam Robbins, Vanderbilt.

Texas A&M’s Buzz Williams and Vanderbilt’s Jerry Stackhouse shared SEC Coach of the Year honors. Robbins was selected as Defensive Player of the Year, and Alabama’s Jahvon Quinerly and Kentucky’s Antonio Reeves were named co-SEC Sixth Man of the Year.

–Field Level Media

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