Controversy unfolded at the SEC basketball tournament, but it had nothing to do with the play on the court. Instead, a fan sporting an Alabama shirt with a snide design made the headlines.
That fan could face banishment if seen wearing the derogatory apparel at Sunday’s championship game.
The Alabama basketball team has been under the spotlight this season due to a tragic incident that took place in January. That situation involved a number of team members, and it resulted in the death of a young woman.
Darius Miles was taken into police custody at the beginning of the calendar year for his involvement in a shooting that killed Jamea Jonae Harris. A gun owned by Miles was used as the murder weapon, and he was quickly booted from the roster following the arrest.
It later came out that star player Brandon Miller actually transported the firearm to the scene of the crime. While he was linked to the altercation, he has not been charged with any wrongdoing.
Miller has been allowed to continue his play for the Alabama squad, which rubbed many around the college basketball community the wrong way.
Despite the controversy, both Miller and the Crimson Tide excelled on the court, landing the top seed in the SEC tournament. They now find themselves in the championship game with a chance to earn the No.1 seed in the Big Dance.
They may have to win that final matchup with one less fan in the stands.
On Saturday, a fan was seen wearing a custom-made Alabama basketball shirt that said, “Killin’ our way through the SEC in ’23.” That shirt immediately landed a response from both fans and SEC officials.
The SEC just told me these fans will not be allowed in again on Sunday with these shirts and if they are found wearing them will be asked to leave.
Here’s our story: https://t.co/tPmcLwgjwR
— John Talty (@JTalty) March 11, 2023
When confronted by AL.com reporter John Talty, the fan said he’d be in attendance for the final game. The SEC, however, will ensure he’s not sporting the same shirt.
This from a recent report by AL.com.
SEC spokesperson Herb Vincent told AL.com that the fans would not be allowed inside Bridgestone Arena with the shirts on Sunday and that if the fans put them on at any point inside the arena, they would be asked to leave. The SEC fan ticket policy states that tickets are revocable if “user is disruptive, endangers others or uses vulgar, threatening or demeaning language.”
It’s another odd moment in the Alabama basketball saga.