Alabama men’s basketball coach Nate Oates said Monday that the fourth-ranked Crimson Tide is going through “kind of a grieving process” after the player Darius Miles and another man were charged with capital murder after a fatal shooting near campus.
Speaking at a press conference, Oates said he could not discuss any specifics related to the case. He said he spoke with Miles’ mother several times on Sunday and met with the team that night.
“I thought it was important for us all to be here and there to support each other in this situation,” Oates said.
Tuscaloosa Violent Crime Squad Capt. Jack Kennedy said the shooting happened early Sunday morning on the Strip, a student-oriented business district near the Tuscaloosa campus. He said Jami Harris, 23, of Birmingham, was shot.
Miles, 21, a junior reserve forward from Washington, D.C., and Michael Lynn Davis, 20, of Charles County, Md., were both charged with murder. Kennedy said the manslaughter charge arose because the death was the result of a drive-by shooting.
Oates said the team met again Monday and will practice later in the day before Tuesday’s game at Vanderbilt.
“They didn’t have too many questions,” Oates said of the players. “It’s really more of a grieving process. I mean, they understand the seriousness of the Jamea situation. They also understand the seriousness of the situation with Darius. It has both sides dealing with it.
“So, yeah, it’s not something you go through a lot as a coach, but I think we have services in the program to help us deal with the situation.”
The university said in a statement that Miles “has been removed from campus” and is no longer on the team.
Attorneys William White, Clayton Tartt and Suzanne Norman of the Birmingham-based law firm Boles Holmes White issued a statement on behalf of Miles, saying he and his family were “heartbroken” by Harris’ death.
“Although Darius is accused of involvement in this tragedy, he maintains his innocence and looks forward to his day in court,” they said. “Our firm’s own investigation is ongoing and no further statements will be made at this time.”
Kennedy said there would initially be no bail in the case. He said attorneys could request a probable cause hearing in Tuscaloosa County Circuit Court and that a judge could consider bail at a later date.
Miles played in just six games this year, averaging 1.5 points. The team announced Saturday that he will miss the rest of the season with an ankle injury.
He also missed time earlier this year due to what was described as a personal matter. Oates said Monday that Miles had returned to Washington to address the issue, but that it was “absolutely unrelated” to the weekend allegations.