Boise State Tee Dog Hits the Big Time on Animal Planet
It's a tradition that goes back years, but for the past two years a dog named Kohl has held down the job of BSU tee retrieving dog very admirably. He was already a pretty big deal around here, but he hit the big time recently, with an appearance and story on Animal Planet....and I learned a few things I didn't know about Kohl.
For instance I didn't realize that Kohl was a rescue dog....and not just any rescue dog, apparently Kohl wasn't treated very well before his owner, Britta Closson, adopted him.
Closson, adopted Kohl, a seven-year-old Labrador retriever, when he was four. “He wasn’t in the best shape when we got him, so he was a little bit underweight, just wasn’t treated very well,” Closson told SB Nation. “And it showed. He didn’t really trust people when we got him, and so the first six months to a year was basically just about building a relationship with him and building his confidence and his trust in that.”
Closson works with Positive Pets, a dog training company in Boise that was started by her father 28 years ago.
Now granted Kohl is a retriever, so his instinct is to retrieve, but it's not quite that easy...it took hours and hours of training.
I also didn't realize that Kohl's first celebrity sports job wasn't tee retrieving. His first job was retrieving baseball bats for the Boise Hawks...and that's where someone from the Boise State Athletic department saw him and asked Closson if He could retrieve football kicking tees? Of course if Kohl could fetch a baseball bat, then retrieving a kicking tee would be simple right? (It's about a 10th of the size and weight of a bat)
However that is not Kohl's only claim to fame. I think his most amazing trick, because of it's difficulty, is making a jump shot during BSU basketball games. Trust me, I have a hard time making jump shots and I have opposable thumbs for cripes sake.
He was a star at each televised home game this past year, ESPN even did a special segment about Kohl during one of their telecasts. He's also been featured in stories appearing in ESPN the Magazine, Reddit, Sports Illustrated and more...I think it's safe to say that after only two years as BSU's kicking tee retrieving dog, his celebrity is only just beginning.