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UNLV Rebels mascot Hey Reb appears on the field before the team's game against the Arizona Wildcats at Sam Boyd Stadium on September 7, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The professional basketballs season starts tonight but it could be argued the most exciting member of the team won’t be one on the court or the bench – he’ll be the 7-foot tall guy on the sidelines covered in fur. 

Yep, the mascot.

The life of a sports mascot is the subject of a new series that starts today on Hulu called "Behind the Mask." Josh Greenbaum is the creator and director of the series.

"Behind the Mask" follows four mascots – a high schooler, a college mascot, a semi-pro hoping to join the professional leagues, and an NBA mascot. It can become a lucrative career – professional mascots can make six figures and up.

"These guys, they really live dual lives and what you’ll often see in many of these characters – two of the four we follow are incredibly introverted and then you put them in the suit and it transforms them," Greenbaum says.

And it’s not just the suit that makes these guys seem like superheroes. Greenbaum recounts how it was tough to find subjects for the series because, "these mascots abide by a pretty serious code and chief among those is not revealing their true identity."

The first three episodes are up on Hulu now. The rest will be released in serial format on Tuesdays.

About the author

Kai Ryssdal is the host and senior editor of Marketplace, public radio’s program on business and the economy.

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