Hall of Fame|
Cowan's long-time association with lacrosse began at Friends' School in Baltimore, where he was a standout midfielder. In 1963, he helped the team win the Maryland Scholastic Association Championship. He remained in Baltimore for his collegiate career at Johns Hopkins, and played on three consecutive championship teams from 1967-1969. Cowan was also a standout on the Johns Hopkins football team, and was drafted by the NFL's Baltimore Colts.
Cowan earned first team All-America lacrosse honors each of his three years on the varsity, and in both 1968 and 1969 he received the prestigious Turnbull Award as the nation's most outstanding attackman. In 1969, Cowan was also the first recipient of the Enners Award given to the nation's most outstanding player. He was selected to play in the annual North/South game in 1969.
Cowan continued at Hopkins for 14 years as an assistant coach, and played for Mt. Washington Lacrosse Club in 1970-71. He also served on the board of directors of the Lacrosse Foundation. In 2013, Cowan became the third recipient of the Tewaaraton Legends Award, which honors outstanding collegiate players who played prior to 2001.