Brandon Miller Leads Alabama To SEC Tournament Final, Whether People Like It Or Not: Trey Wallace

NASHVILLE- You might not agree with him playing for Alabama currently, but all Brandon Miller, has done is lead his team to the SEC Championship and broke a school record. He's done this with the world outside of Tuscaloosa arguing over whether he should play or not while scrutinizing his every move.

Taking center-stage again on Saturday in Nashville, Miller drowned out the boo's during his pregame introduction. He ignored the group of Vanderbilt fans chanting "Brandon Killer" in pregame warmups.

This has become his new normal. Yet still, the star freshman finished with 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting with 12 rebounds and four assists as the Tide knocked off Missouri 72-61 to advance to the SEC title game on Sunday.

And when the game got rolling, the Crimson Tide star started showing off, while screaming with joy towards the crowd after a made basket. For everything he's put himself through over the past few months, it doesn't seem to bother him once he takes the court.

Brandon Miller is definitely worth the price of admission. Love him or hate him, he thrives in the face of adversity and has proven it time and time again.

Forget the fact that he's the main reason folks are tuning into Alabama basketball at the moment, he's damn good, and that's enough for some. The loud standing ovation he received during pregame introductions certainly proved that Alabama fans have taken over Nashville. Following the win, Nate Oats pleaded with Alabama beat reporters to write about how many more fans are needed in the Music City.

In case you were wondering, there was one question about the ongoing situation in Tuscaloosa, when Nate Oats was asked if he knows which players have a gun and if they're required to register them with the athletic department.

"Yeah, look, our players know the university policy. To my knowledge, not one of them has a gun now. But it's -- all the current players on our team have followed university policy with all that stuff," Nate Oats noted.

I look at the word 'now' and wonder if this wasn't the case directly after the unfortunate loss of life that occurred. But, this was all Alabama was going to give, while the reporter kept the microphone away from the young student-assistant. I was seriously watching a game of 'keep-away' playing out right next to me.

But, these are the type of press conferences to expect over the next month, as Alabama continues to win basketball games. In March, when it matters the most. Saturday's victory made the 2022-23 squad the winningest men's basketball team in school history.

So far, they haven't been affected by the outside noise.

Alabama Just Keeps On Winning, Surrounded By Noise

This Alabama basketball team continues to prove why it should be a No.1 seed come NCAA Tournament time next week. Not only is its most important player on the team blocking out all the noise, he's playing like man possessed. Miller passed Collin Sexton on Saturday for the most points ever scored during a freshman season.

Does this sound like a guy who has been sitting up at night, worried about what others are saying?


It sounds like a player who is on a mission to silence any critics. The problem with this scenario is that the situation he finds himself in has nothing to do with his basketball skills. There's not a single person saying Brandon Miller isn't good enough. No, the questions that some have are centered around Alabama allowing him to play, which is a justifiable question.

But don't expect Miller to just succumb to the pressure of outside noise, as he's proven over the past few weeks. The questions have to be asked, as every reporter wouldn't be doing their job. But this looks to have zero effect on the mental makeup of Miller on the court.

It definitely helps when your fanbase has bought up all the tickets that Tennessee and Kentucky fans left on the secondary market after their losses. If Alabama fans want to cheer on Brandon Miller, that's their right, especially since the Bama fan base has drawn a line in the sand.

But the intensity is truly just getting started for this Nate Oats team. If Alabama wins the tournament title on Sunday, they'll wrap-up a first seed and most likely be playing in Birmingham for the opening rounds of NCAA Tournament. The outside noise, inside of an arena, might not be a problem till the sweet-sixteen, if the Tide makes it that far.

The Questions For Miller Are Done For Now In Nashville

Make no mistake about it, when the NCAA Tournament starts next week, Brandon Miller and Nate Oats will face a new set of reporters. Teams that aren't in the SEC will have their reporters following them in to the Big Dance, with their own opportunity to get in on the questions.

And no matter how much the Crimson Tide PR staff and Oats try to deter them, there's no doubt they will come. Just as they have every time the head coach and star player have been behind a podium since the incident occurred.

I don't expect Brandon Miller or Nate Oats to say anything different than what's been said the past two days in Nashville. The pair might just have to find a different way to answer them, or they can keep toeing the company statement.

The Tide will compete for an SEC Tournament Championship on Sunday, while the rest of college basketball sits around and watches Brandon Miller continue to lead his team. Whether you like it or not won't mean a damn thing, so keep yelling at your television every time he touches the ball.

Alabama has come this far, don't expect them to change anything over the next few weeks, with each game carrying more weight than the one before it.

If the Crimson Tide makes a run at a national championship -- Miller will be the catalyst -- whether you like it or not.

Written by
Trey Wallace is the host of The Trey Wallace Podcast that focuses on a mixture of sports, culture, entertainment along with his perspective on everything from College Football to the College World Series. Wallace has been covering college sports for 15 years, starting off while attending the University of South Alabama. He’s broken some of the biggest college stories including the Florida football "Credit Card Scandal" along with the firing of Jim McElwin and Kevin Sumlin. Wallace also broke one of the biggest stories in college football in 2020 around the NCAA investigation into recruiting violations against Tennessee football head coach Jeremy Pruitt. Wallace also appears on radio across seven different states breaking down that latest news in college sports.