Written by 1:39 am Sportstar

Al Cowlings helped OJ Simpson flee in White Ford Branco

Who is Al Cowlings?

Al Cowlings, or Allen Cedric Cowlings, is a former American football player and an actor. Today, people remember Cowlings as the person who helped Simpson flee in his white Ford Branco.

It was one of the most closely followed cases in recent years when OJ Simpson was on trial for the murder of Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman.

People, directly or indirectly, involved in the case were also in the public eye. Among them was Al Cowlings.

Learn everything you need to know about Al Cowlings.

Al Cowlings bio, relationships, career and net worth
Al Cowlings biography

Quicks facts

Full nameAllen Cedric “A.C.” Cowlings
NicknameAl
BirthdateJune 16, 1947
Age75 years old)
Sun SignGemini
TraitsPositive- Very outgoing, outspoken, adaptable, and creative 
Negative
– Indecisive, impulsive, unreliable, and nosy
BirthplaceSan Francisco, California, USA
Currently residingSan Francisco, California, USA
NationalityAmerican
ParentsNo information
GrandparentsNo information
SiblingsNo information
Marital statusMarried
SpouseMarion La Hood
ChildrenNo information
EducationGalileo High School,
City College of San Francisco,
The University of California
ProfessionFormer football player and actor
PositionLinebacker
Height6’5 (1.96m)
Weight250 lbs (113 kg)
High schoolGalileo High School
CollegeUniversity of Southern California

Early life

Al Cowlings

Al Cowlings was born in San Francisco on June 16th, 1947. Al is a Gemini.

A Gemini man is very outgoing, outspoken, adaptable, and creative; however, he is indecisive, impulsive, unreliable, and nosy.

Online sources claim that he spent most of his time in California’s Potrero Hill neighborhood. Furthermore, he was a member of a ‘Superior Social Club’ club based in California.

He was reportedly involved and present in all the club gatherings. It usually took place in the Booker T. Washington Community Center. Besides his extracurricular activities, Al was also a Galileo High School alumni.

During high school, Cowling was interested in football. It led him to be on the school’s football team, where he became a close friend and teammate with OJ Simpson.

Both Al and OJ attended City College of San Francisco and the University of California. During their time at university, the pair became massive football stars. It eventually led them to their NFL career.

Al Cowlings stands 6’4 ft (1.96 m) tall.

He had an enthusiastic and dynamic personality. Al always sought to expand his knowledge by participating in neighborhood events.

He was also friendly, wowing people with his skills and in football games. Regardless, The Nicole Simpson trial tarnished his image due to his association with Simpson. Due to the incident, Cowling lives under the radar today, away from the public eyes.

Relationships

Marguerite L. Whitley (ex-girlfriend)

Marguerite Whitley ex girlfriend
Marguerite Whitley ex-girlfriend of Al Cowlings

Al Cowlings was dating Marguerite L. Whitley in high school, but OJ Simpson wooed her. Reportedly, he had asked OJ to mediate between him and Marguerite. They were struggling with relationship issues.

At first, young Simpson had agreed to help his friend with his relationship. But, he immediately fell in love with Marguerite after talking to her. Likewise, Whitley had fallen for OJ, causing her to break Cowlings’s heart.

Sources claim that Al was quite mad with Simpson for stealing his girlfriend at first. However, despite the awkward situation, the pair mended their friendship.

They ended up being teammates for their university’s football team.

Marguerite married OJ Simpson in 1967.

Marion La Hood (wife)

Marion La Hood was a magazine model. Even though the Clark County Clerk’s Office in Nevada shows that Al Cowlings had obtained a marriage certificate on July 30, 1993, he formally announced his wedding in 2016.

They may still be married. As of May 2016, she lived in Hawthorne, California, while he lived in Santa Barbara.

Career

Al played a crucial role in guiding his team’s defensive line at the University of Southern California. 

In 1969, OJ Simpson joined the Buffalo Bills. According to Chicago Tribune, he persuaded the team to recruit Al Cowlings in the first round of the NFL draft.

The group recognized Cowlings’s leadership and agreed to recruit him in 1971. During his debut season, Al played 13 games for the team and continued to play 14 matches each for a year.

However, after a year, the Buffalo Bills had traded Cowlings to Houston Oilers in the 1972 season. After Houston Oilers, Al Cowlings joined the Rams in 1975.

He later joined the Seattle Seahawks in 1976. The Rams had made Al’s contract flexible, allowing him to join other teams. But the Rams brought him back after playing only one game for the Seattle Seahawks.

Al then played with his friend, OJ Simpson, while playing for the San Francisco 49ers. Sadly, the 1979 season was the final game of both Simpson and Cowlings’s football careers. 

Cowlings also worked as an actor. Al appeared in O.J. Simpson: Juice on the Loose, 30 for 30, Bubba Until It Hurts, A Family Affair, and The Last Boy Scout.

Furthermore, Cowlings also worked for a sports drama called ‘Rudy’ in 1993. There he acted as a football coordinator for the movie team.

The movie is about a boy told he is too small to play college football. It features actors like Sean Astin and Jon Favreau.

In 2012, it was reported by ‘Fox News’ that Al Cowling was working as a handbag sales representative. Two years later, ‘USA Today’ revealed that one of his former teammates had informed them that he had been working under B. Wayne Hughes, founder of Public Storage.

Filmography

YearTitleRole
1974OJ Simpson: Juice on the LooseHimself
1986-19891st & TenCoach Nabors/ Casting Director
1986Bubba Until It HurtsHimself
1991The Last Boy ScoutTechnical advisor
1993RudyMiscellaneous crew
201030 for 30Himself

Awards

YearTitle
1969Named as All-American defensive tackle at University of Southern California
1969First-team All-Pac-8
2009Inducted into USC Athletic Hall of Fame with stars like Junior Seau, Rodney Peete, and John Robinson
2017USC named its residential college after him

The controversy of Al Cowlings

Al Cowlings and OJ Simpson

There is no doubt that Al Cowlings was a loyal friend to OJ Simpson. So it was no surprise to learn that Cowlings helped Simpson flee.

On June 17th, 1994, Simpson tried to flee the police while Cowlings drove him around Southern California highways in his white Ford Bronco.

The televised low-speed chase had interrupted the 1994 NBA finals. Approximately 95 million people only in the US were watching it live on TV.

During the hunt, Cowlings had contacted the police telling them his friend was holding a gun to his head. In addition, Simpson had threatened that he would shoot himself if Al did not take him to his estate in Brentwood.

Later, police cars trailed the SUV, and helicopters thwapped to keep track of the Bronco.

Finally, at around 8 p.m., Cowlings pulled the vehicle outside Simpson’s house after more than one hour.

The judges held Simpson liable for both the murders. As a result, Simpson had to pay $33,500,000 and was sent to prison on February 5th, 1997

Despite his involvement, the public portrayed Al as a stand-up friend who tried to prevent OJ from killing himself.

Moreover, a psychologist named Michael Peck also said, “I think he saved his friend. I think that is what anybody would want in a friend to be there like that.”

Now

After the OJ Simpson trial, Al Cowlings has mainly remained hidden from the public. It was also why he had gotten rid of his white Bronco right after the police chase incident.

In 2012, FOX News and TMZ had reported that Cowlings had gone bankrupt. His bankruptcy had led him to sell handbags to earn a living in California.

In 2014, the media claimed that one of Cowlings’s teammates stated that he worked under B. Wayne Hughes. Bradley Wayne Hughes is an American businessman and founder of Public Storage.

Two years later, Radar Online reported that Al was working as a personal trainer. It mentioned that he also worked as a volunteer at a horse therapy ranch in Santa Barbara.

People saw Cowlings out in public for the first time in 2017. It was when he attended the Trojan’s spring game. His presence in the game was one of the few appearances he had made in the last 25 years after the murder trials.

In 2018, Simpson admitted he was suffering from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). Athletes who go through a series of injuries or concussions during the games are usually diagnosed with this condition. He revealed that his teammates, including Al Cowlings, also suffer from CTE symptoms.

FAQs

Are Al Cowlings and OJ Simpson still friends?

Once upon a time, Al Cowlings and OJ Simpson were inseparable. Cowlings had followed Simpson from Galileo High School to San Francisco City College. Two years later, he joined Simpson’s stardom at UCLA.

But, after the chase incident and his testimonies, Al disappeared from the public eyes.

Simpson is quite active on social media platforms like Twitter. But, he never talks about his long-term friend and confidant Al Cowlings today. It is difficult for us to be sure whether the two are still in touch.

What happened to Al Cowlings?

While Simpson turned himself in, Al was also arrested for aiding and abetting. But, he luckily got released after submitting a $250,000 bail. It was also because the district attorney filed no case against him due to a lack of evidence.

Several sources said police and prosecutors were furious at him for helping OJ flee. They claimed he was dangerously aggravating an already tense situation.

Eyewitnesses revealed that Al pushed Simpson’s son, Jason, into OJ’s Brentwood home’s driveway. He was also yelling at the police posted in the area.

During a trial, Cowlings had held a press conference a block away from the courthouse. It was reportedly conducted by a public relations firm, Edward Lozzi & Associates, at Cowlings’s request.

Al announced that he had created a ‘900 phone number’ for the public to ask him questions about anything except the murder. The conference was the only time Cowlings directly spoke to the media about the Simpson case.

What happened to the white Ford Bronco used by OJ Simpson?

In 1994, Al Cowlings sold his infamous white Ford Bronco to his former sports agent Mike Gilbert. After the purchase, Gilbert parked the car in a garage without using it for more than 17 years.

In 2017, the Alcatraz East Crime Museum had loaned the vehicle to put it on an exclusive display.

Did Al Cowlings testify?

Al Cowlings surrounded by reporter heading for Nicole Simpson murder hearing
Al Cowlings is surrounded by reporters heading for Nicole Simpson’s murder hearing

On December 3rd, 1996, Al got called upon the witness stand, where he contradicted OJ’s testimony. He admitted that he had taken Nicole Brown to the hospital after fighting with OJ on New Year’s eve in 1989. Cowling’s confessed that Nicole had told him that Simpson had hit her on their way to the hospital.

Al Cowling’s testimony had differed from what OJ had claimed that he had “never … never … never” hit his wife.

Furthermore, Al’s friend Jennifer Peace also testified during the trials. In front of the grand jury, she claimed that Cowlings had confessed about Simpson calling him on the murder night.

She said,

“He (OJ Simpson) kept saying over and over. I did not mean to do it. I’ve done something terrible; I didn’t mean for things to turn out this way.”

Peace added that Cowlings had confessed that the knife used to kill the two victims “sleeps with the fishes.” Al Cowlings, however, completely denied he had said anything to Peace about the murder.

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