Coach Walter Oakes was a character who started out on A Different World as a recurring character in the show's first season, becoming a main character by Season 2. The part of Walter was played on the series by comedian/actor/TV personality and show host Sinbad.
Walter is a graduate student at Hillman College, football/baseball/basketball/track coach, dorm director of Matthews Hall. In Season 3 episode 7, "A Wedding From Hell", Jaleesa states that Walter is from Buffalo.
In Season 2, Walter became involved in serious relationship with Jaleesa Vinson who would later court and marry retired U.S. Army Colonel Bradford Taylor, the Hillman College ROTC instructor, the co-dorm director of Gilbert Hall, as the two got engaged by Season 3 (in the episode "Wedding Bells From Hell" ep. #7) as they eventually halts wedding at the altar, as the two both got cold feet and ended their relationship, as they remained friends.
Ironically, he and Colonel Taylor became good friends, with Taylor, as the two once made a bet on who's the best "master of the woods" while instructing students on an ROTC retreat, as he makes a fool of himself in the process. In the end. Walter decides to leave Hillman and move back to his hometown Philadelphia to manage community a center in Season 4 ("Never Can Say Goodbye", episode #24).