Tamia "Coop" Cooper is a main-character on All American. Coop is Spencer's best friend since childhood. Having grown up in South Crenshaw together, Coop is a driving force behind Spencer going to Beverly High, but it doesn't come for free because as her protector in life gets a new zip code, and she was gay, she's forced to find someone -- or something -- closer to home to keep her safe.
In "Pilot", at South Crenshaw High School, Spencer, in an attempt to protect his friend, Coop, gets into a fight. After practice, Spencer complains to Coop about Coach Baker and the team. He doesn't know if he wants to be at Beverly, but Coop reassures him. She tells him to make this his season. Again, Coop encourages Spencer to take his chance. Not only can Spencer help his mother, but he can give his brother, Dillon, a better life.
In "99 Problems", it's revealed that Coop has been spending time with Shawn, a neighborhood gang member. After Spencer expresses his disapproval of the friendship, Coop tries to break ties. However, the matter is further complicated when she's forced to intervene in a scuffle between both Spencer and Shawn. Later, Coop and Spencer reconcile.
In "I", on the surface, Coop's relationship with her mother, Mrs. Cooper, is very charismatic and charming. However, it's revealed that her mother is completely in denial of Coop's lesbian lifestyle. Coop explores a flirtatious relationship with Patience, a young church-goer with a reputation. Eventually, Coop gets kicked out of her mother's house for actually vocalizing the obvious fact that she is gay after her mother accuses her of being "confused." Present at the ruthless football game between Beverly Hills High and Crenshaw, Coop offers Spencer some obvious insight as to why the Beverly Hills team doesn't accept him. It's because he doesn't accept them. Even pointing out the fact that he still wears his Crenshaw football ring when he's on their field.
In "Lose Yourself", Coop, still living with Grace, is bummed out because she doesn't have any cash; especially, after Spencer shows her a wad of money given to him by the coach. So, she calls Shawn for help. She thinks he is going to give her an odd job, but then he helps her get hired at Alvin's Barbershop. It's revealed that Shawn had ulterior motives for getting Coop the job at the barbershop. He wanted to launder his money in the establishment. All along, Shawn's friendliness was a way to see if he could trust her.
In "All We Got", Coop is having an identity crisis. She starts questioning her sexuality. It's a deal breaker for Patience, Coop's girlfriend, when they try to define their relationship. Coop confesses to Patience that she lied in regards to her whereabouts.
In "The Choice Is Yours", after work, Spencer finds Coop hugged up with Patience, but their interaction is cut short when Shawn arrives and pulls Coop away for a job. The next day, Coop and Patience are hanging out in Alvin's Barbershop when two rival gang members come in. Right away Coop and Patience are on edge. The lead member pressures Coop into cutting his hair but she secretly texts Shawn who arrives shortly after. The gang members want Shawn's money but Shawn stands his ground and defends the shop since it's a "safe zone", meaning it can't be used for gang activities. The rival gang leaves the shop. Sadly, Alvin's Barbershop gets tagged and Spencer thinks Coop knows who did it. Spencer really doesn't want Coop and Shawn to be friends. Coop tries to warn Shawn and discovers that he's a single father and the money he hides in Alvin's shop is for his daughter, Maya. Coop shows up with Shawn and Spencer is ready to throw him out. Coop threatens to leave with Shawn so Spencer backs down, for now. Backstage in the dressing room, Chynna is getting ready for her performance when Layla and Coop walk in to wish her good luck. Chynna becomes dumbfounded when Coop mentions Alvin and his shop. Gunshots go off during Chynna's performance and everyone panics. Coop rushes to find Shawn. Spencer chases after Coop but scolds her when they find the members of the rival gang dead in the barbershop's parking lot as the police are investigating. Shawn has disappeared. Spencer tries to lecture Coop about Shawn but she leaves the scene to look for him anyway. Spencer confronts Shawn at his apartment and threatens him if Coop gets hurt. Spencer leaves but he doesn't know that Coop is already there.
In "California Love", Shawn starts working for JP but as an intern. Turns out the head honcho of his gang, Tyrone, needs him for a job but Shawn can't do it. Trying to be a supportive friend for Shawn on his new path, Coop tries to take the job for him but Tyrone quickly dismisses her saying she's starting to make the gang "look soft". But Coop reassures Shawn that she can handle it on the night of the homecoming dance. Coop chastises Spencer and Chris for not enjoying themselves. Coop leaves Spencer and Chris to squash their beef. Plans fall apart when Coop meets Tyrone instead of Swiss to make a "drop". Tyrone tries to pressure Coop to kill someone to prove her loyalty to him but Coop says no and he isn't happy about it. Later, in Shawn's apartment, he's hopeful about his internship until Coop explains the night's events and tops it off with a less than affirming conclusion.
In "Homecoming", Spencer gets dropped off in front of his home in Crenshaw in a limousine and sees Coop sitting on the front steps. He can tell something is wrong. Spencer and Coop review the outcomes of their evenings: Spencer decided not to date Layla; Coop found herself and Shawn on Tyrone's bad side when he plan to help Shawn went sour. The situation with Tyrone doesn't create a wider wedge in Spencer and Coop's friendship, instead they become closer. Coop's back is against the wall and she turns to Spencer for help. Spencer reaches out to Laura, who is an attorney, and she tells them to snitch on Tyrone. Coop is not having it because she knows that's just asking to be killed. Spencer urges her to take the advice. At Shawn's apartment, Spencer tries to convince Shawn as well but he isn't too happy about it either. As Shawn pays Tyrone off with his personal savings, he excitedly calls Coop. Believing the worst to be over, Shawn was prepared to live a free life with his daughter but before he could even make plans, a rival gang member unexpectedly shoots him in the chest. Shell-shocked after hearing the gunshots over the phone, Coop can't seem to register reality at first. But now, it's revenge time. Coop is seemingly accepted into the gang because she wants to avenge Shawn's death.