UND Coach – An ‘Unrecognized’ Celebrity

In a state-wide North Dakota poll, Fighting Hawks Head Coach Brad Berry won ‘the most unrecognizable celebrity’ in the state of North Dakota. After the high profile Dave Hakstol left for Philadelphia, Berry a 9 year assistant was elevated to the head coaching position at the currently #2 ranked North Dakota Fighting Hawks.

In the poll, state residents were shown pictures of five North Dakota celebrities by the Grand Forks Herald and asked to name them. The five prominent North Dakota residents included in the poll:

  • Jack Swagger, Wrestler
  • Aspen Mansfield, Instagram Star
  • Wiz Khalifa, Rapper
  • Lawrence Welk, Conductor-TV Show Host
  • Brad Berry, Head Coach, Fighting Hawks

Of those surveyed, over 60% of respondents knew of four of the five North Dakota celebrities while 8 out of 10 Dakotan’s thought Brad Berry just looked like a ‘regular guy’.

According to the Grand Forks Herald in a recent article, Berry can get around town in total anonymity. He even joked, “Even my wife forgets who I am sometimes.”

Earlier in his career, he used to wear a name tag everywhere so people would know who he was. This is one local ‘celebrity’ who can move around Grand Forks without a single, ‘Hi Brad’.

“On my drive to work last week I got ‘cut off’ and I gave a guy the one finger salute – I am so used to people not knowing who I am. Was I surprised when I realized it was Ed Shafer, the President of North Dakota University – I should have known when I saw the personalized license plate – BMOC. He forgot who I was – and we had breakfast together four times.”

Berry is even forgotten during the weekly coaches show at The Ground Round in Grand Forks. Both radio co-hosts frequently address him by the wrong name. Tim Hennessy calls him Dave (Hakstol) during the broadcast and broadcast partner, Paul Ralston, has called him ‘Doug’ on numerous occasions.

Berry replaced Dave Hakstol, a very visible figure in the state of North Dakota who was hailed by locals during his daily trips to the store, casinos, and strip clubs.

When asked if he was ever told he looks like any celebrities, he quickly responded, “Lou Ferrigno – without the guns.”

Brad BerryLou Ferrigno
Photo: Dave Berry, left & Lou Ferrigno, right 


“On our last road trip, I was in the lobby meeting some of my assistants when a hotel guest came up, handed me their bags, and a room key — Yep, I took him up to his room and made $2.00 too!”

“Heck, even the Zamboni guy doesn’t know who I am!”

So on your next trip to North Dakota, if you hear somebody say, “who is that guy?”…if just might be UND’s Brad Berry.