Being Blue: Meeting the man behind the Colts lovable mascot
He's seven feet tall, wears a size 14 shoe and is covered in blue fur. But Blue, the Colts' mascot, is much more than just a big, zany character.
The man behind the mascot considers it serious business. He created Blue from head to toe and sat down for his first interview ever to talk about life in and out of the suit.
They're the biggest names in Indianapolis Colts football - Andrew Luck, Reggie Wayne and Trey Mock.
If Mock's name doesn't sound familiar, maybe this one does - "Blue."
Blue is the Colts' mascot. He's the team's first and only mascot and is all the creation of the man under the mask - Trey Mock.
"I had this vision of what I wanted it to be on paper," said Trey.
That sketch, drawn at his mother's kitchen table in 2006, was just the beginning of a long creative process.
"My boss at the time really wanted a rough, tough, mean mascot. But, I wanted pretty much the opposite of that - big and funny," said Trey.
Blue's big and funny comes largely from a simple children's toy.
"What brings Blue to life the most is the walk because it's my normal walk, but as I'm walking, it hits the hula hoops on the inside and that's what really bounces Blue along down the street," said Trey.
Blue's eyes are attached so they move when he moves. His wavy mane and tail come in an assortment of colors. With just a rip of the Velcro, a new look! Then, there are the blowing nose streamers, or snot, as some call it.
"It's kind of an exclamation point for Blue," said Trey. "Even people who know they're there, I can still catch them off guard with it."
But Blue's antics at the Colts home games are just a fraction of what this big, lovable character is all about.
"A lot of people think it's some college kid or high school kid that just hops in a mascot suit and not a lot of people realize all that goes into it. We do 450 appearances a year. We're involved in a lot of sponsorship. We have 200 school shows we do. I wrote all of the school shows," said Trey.
Trey also sets those shows up and breaks them down with the help of his assistant, Janelle Christie.
"He's able to bring a very serious message that sometimes could be boring. That's the whole joke of the show," said Janelle.
"It's the two of us. Our van and trailer. All of our stuff is packed in the trailer. So, it's this huge screen, sound equipment and all of our props come with us. So we set it up and Janelle gets miked up. She's the emcee," said Trey.
Then, Trey hops into the van for a quick change and 30 minutes of high-energy entertaining education follows.
"If we can come in and teach one kid the importance of playing 60, eating healthy, we have an anti-bullying campaign," said Trey.
"You're being funny and learning at the same time. So you can learn better when you can laugh sometimes," said a student from the school show.
Trey's experience as a mascot extends through two NFL teams, the Atlanta Falcons and Buffalo Bills, all the way back to college at Auburn University where he was award-winning.
"We won the national championships for college mascots in 2003," said Trey.
After stints with the Falcons and Bills, he landed with the Colts and landed a wife.
"I never really saw myself dating a cheerleader, but I just fell absolutely in love with Ali. She's an amazing person," said Trey.
Trey's wife Ali was a Colts cheerleader. Dating Blue - or Trey - was a first.
"Never in a million years thought I'd say, when asked 'What does your husband do?' He's the Indianapolis Colts mascot. Nope, never. Since I'm a schoolteacher, my kids go nuts over it," said Ali.
Now, the two have a seven-month-old baby, Gunnar, who incidentally is just meeting Blue for the first time during our shoot at the family's home.
"I think he knows that's his daddy, he knows his personality. He has so much fun with him, he's always playing with him and takes such good care of him," said Ali.
And family is priority one for Trey and Blue.
"Obviously, Mr. Irsay and the Irsay family are just amazing. They want a grassroots marketing campaign. They want to be in the community. They love the city of Indy and Indiana and that's why I'm able to do the things I'm able to do, because they want to put the time and effort into a mascot program," said Trey.
So what's next for Blue? There's a prototype in the works that could mean a new look for the mascot, but right now, getting details is next to impossible.
"I'm really nervous about it. It's not a complete overhaul, but we've got a few tricks up our sleeves," said Trey.