'All American' Kills Off Major Character In Shocking Season 5 Episode
Photo Credit: The CW

'All American' Kills Off Major Character In Shocking Season 5 Episode

A major character has been killed off of The CW’s All American.

Spoiler alert:

After 5 seasons, Taye Diggs is saying goodbye to the show.

The actor’s run as Coach Billy Baker came to an end during the Feb. 13 episode in which he was shockingly killed off of the series.

Diggs has been part of the main All American cast for its entire five-season run. The series, which is one of the highest-rated at The CW, has already been renewed for a sixth season. 

Taye Diggs as Billy Baker and Michael Evans Behling as Jordan Baker | Photo: Troy Harvey/The CW

Baker died trying to save one of his players.

During the episode, entitled “Time,” Billy accepts a head coaching job at GAU, where he was set to reunite with Spencer (Daniel Ezra) and his son, Jordan (Michael Evans Behling). After a showcase for college coaches, the bus transporting Billy, Asher (Cody Christian) and Jabari (Simeon Daise) and the team crashes after blowing a tire. Billy and the team are able to exit the vehicle, but he quickly realizes that Jabari is missing and goes back for him.

While viewers are left wondering about Jabari’s fate, the final scene of the episode reveals that Billy does not survive.

Showrunner Nkechi Okoro Carroll says this isn't the last time we'll be seeing Billy Baker.

“It has been an honor to work with Taye over these last five seasons and to watch him bring such incredible life to the role of Billy Baker,” Carroll said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter. “It has truly been a gift for me and my fellow writers to write a character that was equally flawed and heroic. Billy was all of us and what a joy it was to watch this character grow as he raised his kids and his football players as one big family. We wish Taye the very best in this next chapter of his life and he remains a beloved member of the All American family, so you haven’t seen the last of Billy Baker.”

Speaking about his exit, Diggs told TV Line,  “I was having a great time. It was just a feeling that I got [that I was ready to leave], and I just honored that feeling. It was maybe mid-fourth season. I don’t even remember, to be honest, because the showrunner [Carroll] and myself are close. We’d been keeping in contact, so she had known, and we’d been talking. And we decided how to go about it, and storylines and whatnot, so it was all above board, and everyone was in the know.”

On the way he was written out, the actor added, The easiest choice would have been for me to teach at some college, but then given the intensity of the relationships between me and my family, and me and the team, it would not make sense if I was still alive and wasn’t still in contact with these children of mine — these students, these young men that had such an influence on my life. When I was told how I was exiting, I was impressed. [laughs] No characters I’ve played have ever been dealt with in that fashion. I was honored.”

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