Charles Barkley, the former NBA great and Auburn star, doesn’t like the way those in charge of Alabama basketball handled the situation with Brandon Miller.
The freshman All-American forward faced no team punishment for his alleged ties to the murder of Jamea Harris. Police never charged Miller with anything. But an investigator testified that Miller brought teammate Darius Miles’ gun to him after giving him a ride to a sports bar. Police say Miles texted Miller to pick him up from the bar and the gun was in the back seat from when Miles was dropped off originally. Police believe Michael Davis, a friend of Miles, used the gun to kill Harris.
Miles and Davis face capital murder charges while Miller does not as “there’s nothing we could charge him with,” deputy district attorney A. Paula Whitley told reporters. Crimson Tide player Jaden Bradley also was at the scene and also has not faced any charges.
But Charles Barkley said the Alabama athletic department should’ve done something to Miller. The Crimson Tide kicked Miles off the team as soon as police took him into custody.
“He should have been given a time out to learn decisions have consequences,” Charles Barkley said. “He’s lucky Alabama is behind the times. In forty-nine other states, he probably would have been charged with a crime.”
Charles Barkley Isn’t Sure Whether Alabama Gets Back to No. 1
The athletic department considered whether to discipline Miller and Bradley. But athletic director Greg Byrne said school officials decided against it. Neither Miller nor Bradley was charged and both players cooperated with the investigators.
The Crimson Tide were ranked No. 1 in the country earlier this season. They’re fourth now. And the Tide can clinch a top seed in the NCAA tournament when the bracket is unveiled Sunday afternoon.
Alabama plays Texas A&M for the SEC title Sunday in Nashville. And on Saturday, Miller dazzled on the court. The extra attention he’s receiving doesn’t seem to hurt his play. He pulled off a double-double in the SEC semifinal against Missouri. The freshman scored 20 points with 11 rebounds in Alabama’s 72-61 victory over the Tigers. He was near perfect from the field, hitting eight of his 11 shots with three treys.
For the season, Miller is averaging just under 20 points. He’s Alabama’s best player. Coach Nate Oats decided not to discipline the one player who could win the Tide a national title.
And about that potential NCAA championship. Charles Barkley isn’t going all in on Bama anymore.
“They went from my favorite to,” Barkley said, “I don’t know.”
He also added: “I don’t think they can get it back.”