UNCP men’s hoops coach Ben Miller on administrative leave; will miss season opener

By: Staff report
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PEMBROKE — The University of North Carolina at Pembroke men’s basketball coach Ben Miller is currently on administrative leave and was not on the sidelines Friday as the team opened the 2019-20 season.

University officials confirmed that Miller is on a two-week leave of absence that began Monday and an incident that prompted the decision in question is under review.

The Robesonian has learned from multiple sources that the incident under review is a traffic accident that involved a 2017 Chevrolet passenger car UNCP provides Miller.

According to a Lumberton Police Department report, the accident happened at 4:45 a.m. on Nov. 1 when the Chevrolet was being driven by Jasmine Powell, of River Run Drive in Lumberton, north in the southbound lane of Interstate 95 and struck two passenger cars and a bus near mile marker 18. Powell was charged with DWI and the report said she had a blood alcohol level of 0.17, more than double the legal limit of 0.08. There was alcohol on the vehicle’s floor board, according to the report.

Multiple sources say Powell, a 27-year-old student at UNCP, was seen with Miller earlier that night.

The university had no comment, saying it is a personnel matter.

Assistant coach Tony Jones stood in during Miller’s absence as the Braves began the year in Florence, South Carolina, at the Peach Belt Conference/South Atlantic Conference Challenge against Catawba on Friday. The team meets Newberry on Saturday at 6 p.m.

The two-week leave also will cause Miller to miss Tuesday’s game at Winston-Salem State and games Nov. 16 and Nov. 17 in the Queens Tournament in Charlotte against Tusculum and Queens.

Miller has been with the program for 11 seasons and his 199 wins are the most of any men’s coach in school history.

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Staff report