Back in 1994, we still thought they were as close as brothers. With O.J. Simpson and Marcus Allen, you have to start there. Both were celebrated running backs at the University of Southern California who had achieved NFL superstardom. And through the power of their talent and charisma, the longtime friends had each soared to heights rarely reached by black men in the 1980s and early ’90s – in a society that still values whiteness above all else.
Allen following in Simpson’s footsteps much as someone’s kid brother might. “I could remember watching ’SC in ’67 and ’68 when Juice [O.J. Simpson] was there,” Allen told the Washington Post in 1981. “They were always my favorite team and he [Simpson] was kind of my role model.” So when Simpson was charged with the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman, you just knew Allen would rush to Simpson’s defense. But what we just didn’t know at the time was that Allen and Simpson were brothers no more.