‘Coach’ Turns 35: Where is the Cast Now?

Coach Bill Fagerbakke, Ken Kimmins; front from left: Clare Carey, Shelley Fabares, Craig T. Nelson, Jerry Van Dyke, (season 6,1993), 1989-1997

For almost a decade, we followed the personal and professional life of Hayden Fox on Coach. It has been 35 years since the show premiered and it did quite well with its unique combination of comedic elements, family, and sports. Craig T. Nelson won an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series in 1992, but he almost didn’t get the role! Creator Barry Kemp actually wrote the role for actor Dabney Coleman but he wasn’t available when the time came to film and eventually, Nelson won out.

Although several decades have passed, it is still hard to believe the show is now considered a classic. Have you ever wondered what the cast of Coach is up to now? Let’s find out!

Craig T. Nelson (Hayden Fox)


Craig T. Nelson

Universal/Everett Collection; Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Nelson played Hayden Fox, the head coach of a fictional college football team called Minnesota State University’s Screaming Eagles. Before being cast in Coach, he was known for Charlie’s Angels, WKRP in Cincinnati, Poltergeist, and being a radio performer/comedian. After Coach, he continued his career voicing Mr. Incredible in Disney/Pixar’s The Incredibles films and starring in shows such as Parenthood and Young Sheldon. He has also appeared in movies such as The Family Stone, The Proposal, Blades of Glory, and the Book Club movies. He could have had another very famous role too. He was reportedly offered the role of Jay Pritchett in Modern Family but turned it down and Married… With Children star Ed O’Neill was cast instead.

Jerry Van Dyke (Luther Van Dam)

d. 2018

Jerry Van Dyke

Universal/Everett Collection/Michael Ansell/Disney General Entertainment Content via Getty Images

The younger brother of Dick Van Dyke got his start in The Dick Van Dyke Show and went on to form his own career. His big break was in Coach, playing the assistant coach, and ended up getting nominated for four Emmy awards for the role. While Jerry did not have as big of a career as his brother, he held his own, appearing in shows such as My Name Is Earl, Yes, Dear, The Middle, and Raising Hope. In the ’90s, he was a spokesperson for Hardee’s and Big Lots. Jerry’s final television role was on The Middle alongside his brother Dick. He passed away in 2018 at the age of 86.

Shelley Fabares (Christine Armstrong)


Shelley Fabares

ABC/Everett Collection/Jason Merritt/Getty Images for Alzheimer’s Association

Fabares started out her career as a teen idol playing Mary Stone on The Donna Reed Show. She also appeared in three movies with Elvis Presley himself: Girl Happy (1965), Spinout (1966), and Clambake (1967). Coach was considered her comeback role and afterward she focused mainly on voice work, for instance, she is the voice of Martha Kent on Superman: The Animated Series. She hasn’t acted much in recent decades but did produce the Screen Actors Guild Awards from 2004 to 2011. She has been married to M*A*S*H star Mike Farrell since 1984.

Bill Fagerbakke (Michael “Dauber” Dybinski)


Bill Fagerbakke

ABC/Everett Collection/Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Paramount+

Fagerbakke was cast as an assistant coach in Coach which became one of his most well-known roles. After the series ended, he also pursued more of a voice acting career and is the voice of Patrick Star in the animated series SpongeBob SquarePants. He has also guest-starred on Young Sheldon, How I Met Your Mother, and currently voices Patrick in The Patrick Star Show.

Clare Carey (Kelly Fox)


Clare Carey

ABC/Everett Collection/Michael Bezjian/WireImage/Getty Images

While Coach was also probably her most notable role, she also appeared on the Olsen twins’ sitcom So Little Time and shows Point Pleasant, Jericho, and Crash. Most recently, she guest-starred on CSI, NCIS: New Orleans, Aquarius, and Maid to Order.

Kenneth Kimmins (Howard Burleigh)


Kenneth Kimmins

ABC Photo Archives/Disney General Entertainment Content via Getty Images and IMDb

Kimmins began his career on Broadway and is perhaps best known for his role on Coach. He has also appeared on iconic shows Dallas, The Love Boat, Highway to Heaven, The West Wing, and more. After Coach, he played the role of Dr. Bernard Klein in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and continued appearing on Broadway with his final show being The Music Man.

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