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What The Cast Of Coach Is Doing Today

Coach aired on ABC from 1989 to 1997, spanning nine seasons and 200 episodes. It earned star Craig T. Nelson three Emmy nominations and one win for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series. Guest star Tim Conway also picked up an Emmy in 1996. Coach was unusual for its work setting: The passionate world of a major college football program. Appropriately enough, its seventh season aired prior to Monday Night Football

Coach chronicles the ups and downs of coach Hayden Fox (Nelson) and his assistants Luther Van Dam (Jerry Van Dyke) and Michael "Dauber" Dybinski (Bill Fagerbakke) as they whip the fictional Minnesota State University football team into shape. The actual football is always in the background — instead, the show focuses on the foibles of Fox's eccentric assistants, his relationship with his girlfriend (and later wife) Christine (Shelley Fabares), and his complex bond with his estranged adult daughter, Kelly (Clare Carey). In the show's final two seasons, Fox becomes head coach of an NFL expansion team and he and Christine adopt a baby boy.  

Coach is clever, hilarious, and heartfelt — an absolutely classic sitcom, in other words. Let's take a look at what the cast of Coach has been up to in the 20-plus years since the show's end.

Jessica Walter

Jessica Walter is in five episodes of the seventh season of Coach, playing ambitious agent Susan Miller. She pushes Coach Fox to act against his better judgment, to the point of injuring his players. It's no surprise to anyone who's seen these episodes that Walter went on to excel at portraying morally murky characters.

Since her role on Coach, Walter has been part of several long-running TV shows. She appeared in 20 episodes of the sitcom Oh Baby, which aired from 1998 to 2000,  as disapproving, neurotic mom Celia Calloway. Walter went on to feature in 11 episodes of the 2008 90210 reboot, playing Tabitha Wilson, the wisecracking grandmother of protagonists Annie and Dixon Wilson (Shenae Grimes-Beach and Tristan Mack-Wilds, respectively). This role is basically a sweeter variation of what has become her best-known character: Arrested Development's Lucille Bluth, the scheming, tart-tongued, hard-drinking mastermind of the corrupt Bluth family. Over the course of five seasons and 84 episodes, she devours the role of TV's most horrible mother, her searing wit and killer timing on full display. Airing sporadically from 2003 to 2019, the show found new life on Netflix after it was canceled by Fox. 

The spirit of Lucille also lives in what has become Walter's longest-running role: Super-spy and manipulative mother Mallory Archer on Archer.

Katherine Helmond

Katherine Helmond starred in 24 episodes of Coach's final two seasons as Doris Sherman, an eccentric billionaire who buys an NFL expansion football team and offers Coach Fox the job of coaching it. She's shrewder than she seems at first and has her own agenda.

After Coach, Helmond appeared in 14 episodes of Everybody Loves Raymond, as Debra Barone's (Patricia Heaton) conservative mother, Lois Whelan. While Helmond's TV work was mostly limited to one-time appearances in the latter days of her career, she did appear in several films. Kids will recognize her as the voice of Lizzie, the co-founder of Radiator Springs, in all three Cars movies. In 2011's Collaborator, she played Irene Longfellow, the mother of Martin Donovan's playwright character Robert Longfellow. Her final film was Frank And Ava, which told the story of Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner's stormy relationship. Walter played Betty Burns, wife of Bobby Burns, Sinatra's agent.

Sadly, Helmond passed away from complications of Alzheimer's disease in 2019, at the age of 89.

Pam Stone

6'1" Pam Stone played Judy Watkins, Minnesota State University's women's basketball coach. She and Hayden Fox frequently engage in prank wars, which are heightened by the fact that she dates Dauber for much of the show's run. 

Other than a single guest appearance on The Love Boat: The Next Wave in 1998, Stone hasn't done any more work in television. She was interested in the attempted Coach revival and appeared in the 2015 pilot, but the series was ultimately dropped by NBC. Stone became known for hosting the award-winning Pam Stone Show, a radio program memorably broadcast from an outbuilding behind her barn. She also had a syndicated humor column. Her first novel, Girls Like Her, a multi-generational family story, was released in March of 2019.

Stone started training in the sport of dressage while still on Coach. It became a passion, and she made good on her vow not to turn 40 while in Hollywood, setting up her own horse training facility in Tryon, NC. In addition, she writes regularly about the sport for Dressage Today.

Kris Kamm

Kris Kamm portrayed Stuart Rosebrock, an eccentric mime, in 48 episodes of Coach. Rosebrock becomes Kelly Fox's boyfriend, and eventually her husband. Hayden Fox detests him — memorably, one episode is titled "Bring Me the Head of Stuart Rosebrock." When Stuart cheats on Kelly and they break up, Hayden has to contain his joy at having Stuart out of his daughter's life. 

After Coach, Kamm has worked sporadically. His highest-profile role was as Billy Claiborne in the 1994 film Wyatt Earp. Kamm has also starred in TV movies including 1993's In The Line Of Duty: Ambush In Waco and 1994's Gambler V: Playing For Keeps. He had small roles through 2005, the last as a would-be terrorist in the film World On Fire. After a break from the screen, he returned to acting in 2018 as a therapist in the TV miniseries OCD: This Is Real. Interestingly, Stuart Rosebrock ended up being a rare comedic role for Kamm. Generally speaking, he plays serious characters — often police officers and soldiers.

Georgia Engel

Georgia Engel played Shirley Burleigh, the kind wife of ill-tempered athletic director Howard in 21 episodes of Coach. Engel made a career out of playing sweet characters like Shirley: Ditzy Georgette, her famous character in The Mary Tyler Moore Show, set the tone of her career. She nabbed two Emmy nominations for that role and never looked back.

Engel's sweet tenacity was certainly on display in her 14 episodes on Everybody Loves Raymond between 2003 and 2005. As Pat MacDougall, mother-in-law to Raymond's brother Robert, Engel picked up another three Emmy nominations and won a Prism Award for Best Performance in a Comedy Series.

In 2012, Engel appeared in three episodes of The Office as Irene, an elderly woman helped by the sweet-natured Erin. Engel played against type here: Erin is the kindly ditz in this scenario, in contrast to Irene's sass.

Reuniting with former Mary Tyler Moore castmate Betty White, Engel appeared in 18 episodes of Hot In Cleveland as Mamie, best friend to Betty White's Elka. This was her last regular role, as Engel died in April 2019 at the age of 70.  

Kenneth Kimmins

Coach has proved to be the longest-running gig of character actor Kenneth Kimmins' career. As the combative and stern athletic director Howard Burleigh, he's one of Hayden Fox's primary foils. He appeared in 79 episodes over the course of the series.

While his role diminished in the show's later seasons, after Fox goes off to the NFL, Kimmins did not lack for work. From 1995 to 1997 he played Dr. Bernard Klein on Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman.

As the years have gone on, Kimmins has established himself as an actor of authority: He's been cast as doctors, clergymen, principals, police officers, and mayors over the course of his career. His dry wit and stony face make him ideal for comedic actors to bounce off of. He is, in essence, a career straight man. Want a particularly crazy example? Since Coach's end, Kimmins has appeared on critically-acclaimed series including Curb Your Enthusiasm, Arrested Development, and Boston Legal. His role on each of these shows? A doctor.

Kimmins has slowed down in the last 15 years — a sensible choice, as he is currently 79. His last role was in the 2014 film Bridge And Tunnel.

Clare Carey

Clare Carey portrayed Kelly Fox, Hayden's daughter, in 113 episodes of Coach. It is by far the longest-running role of her career, but definitely not her only success. 

Carey has rarely lacked for work. Soon after Coach ended, she played Macy Carlson, the overbearing mom of Riley and Chloe Carlson, in the series So Little Time. Carey then played Sarah Parker, mother to lifeguard Jesse Parker, on 13 episodes of the supernatural series Point Pleasant.

One of the stranger projects Carey has worked on was a TV spinoff of the Oscar-winning film Crash, also called Crash. Carey played a rich mother named Christine Emory, living in LA's posh Brentwood neighborhood, in 13 episodes.

Jerichoa post-apocalyptic CBS series, unveiled a different side of Carey in the role of Mary Bailey. The owner of a bar in a town affected by a nearby atomic explosion, she's tough and resourceful. Though the series was canceled, it became something of a cult classic — a status Carey can absolutely take partial credit for.

As of 2019, Carey is still hard at work. Most recently, she starred as Judy Boone in a 2020 production of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.

Bill Fagerbakke

Bill Fagerbakke played Michael "Dauber" Dybinski, an ex-player and assistant head coach who never quite manages to graduate from Minnesota State University. He's kind of a space case, but also far smarter than he (or anyone else) thinks. Coach's epilogue sees him coaching teams all the way to the Super Bowl.

Fagerbakke has been incredibly busy since Coach ended. He's been the voice of Spongebob Squarepants' dim best friend Patrick Star since 1999, appearing in 244 episodes of the iconic cartoon, 19 video games, and three movies. 

That only scratches the surface of his voice acting career — Fagerbakke has been part of an absolutely enormous number of cartoons over the last few decades. He starred as Broadway and Hollywood in the cult classic Gargoyles, played Alan Parrish in the animated Jumanji series, and has made appearances in a plethora of other shows, including The Wild Thornberrys, Young Justice, Wander over Yonder, and DuckTales.

Fagerbakke has had his share of non-animated roles as well. From 2005 till 2014, he played Marvin Eriksen, father of Marshall, in How I Met Your Mother. He was also in four episodes of the 2014 series Growing Up Fisher as Ken Fisher. Perhaps most interestingly, Fagerbakke had a three-episode role on Oz as Karl Metzger, a neo-Nazi corrections officer. Talk about playing against type.

Shelley Fabares

As Coach's Christine Armstrong-Fox, a tough, independent TV anchor, Shelley Fabares shines. She is Hayden Fox's equal in every way as they go from being a couple to getting married and eventually becoming parents.

Fabares has had a long and distinguished career. At the age of 11, she had a role in a 1955 production of Our Town, part of the anthology series Producers' Showcase. A few years later, she embarked upon the role of Mary Stone, a character she played for 191 episodes of the highly popular Donna Reed Show. She also starred in movies with Elvis Presley including Clambake, Girl Happy, and Spinout, and was a regular on Annette Funicello's TV show, Walt Disney Presents: Annette.

After Coach, Fabares did some voice acting work as Martha Kent in Superman: The Animated Series and Justice League. She retired from acting in 2000 after getting a liver transplant that saved her from autoimmune hepatitis. However, she was a producer for the Screen Actors Guild Awards from 2004 to 2018.  

Jerry Van Dyke

Jerry Van Dyke's crusty assistant coach (and Hayden Fox's best friend) Luther Van Dam is one of the most memorable parts of Coach. He retires at the end of the series when Hayden Fox does, settling into a relationship with Doris after a lifetime of being alone. Van Dyke was nominated for four Emmy awards for Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series for his time on Coach.

Van Dyke worked steadily following the end of the series. He played Grandpa Max in ten episodes of You Wish, a 1997 show about a family and a genie. He was also part of The Dick Van Dyke Show Revisited, a 2004 TV movie in which he reprised his role as Stacey Petrie. 

Between 2001 and 2005, Van Dyke appeared on eight episodes of Yes, Dear as Big Jimmy Hughes, father to Mike O'Malley's Jimmy Hughes. In his last major role, he portrayed Tag Spence in eight episodes of The Middle from 2010 to 2015. Van Dyke passed away in January 2018, at the age of 86.  

Craig T. Nelson

Craig T. Nelson is an actor's actor. Playing Hayden Fox in Coach garnered him an Emmy, and it's no wonder as to why: Nelson's performance as Fox remains a highlight of his long career.

After Coach, Nelson starred in CBS crime drama The District. From 2000 to 2004, he played Chief Jack Mannion, a cop hired to clean up Washington, D.C. Nelson then played Bob Parr, aka Mr. Incredible, in Pixar's 2004 smash hit The Incredibles. He returned to the role in 2018's Incredibles 2

Amazingly, Nelson struck long-term TV gold again as part of the ensemble cast of Parenthood. In 103 episodes aired between 2010 and 2015, Nelson portrayed Zeke Braverman, stern patriarch to the show's central family. Currently, he is appearing as Coach Dale Ballard in Young Sheldon. What's next for Craig T. Nelson? Time will tell ... but you can bet the stalwart actor will bring his A-game.