Women's Basketball

    Kyle and Whitney Thomas - Bond Between Siblings

    Go Hoosiers! Sophomore Whitney Thomas and her brother Kyle share a bond as brother and sister, but also as friends and student-athletes.
    Go Hoosiers!
    Sophomore Whitney Thomas and her brother Kyle share a bond as brother and sister, but also as friends and student-athletes.
    Go Hoosiers!

    Oct. 2, 2006

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - With just 16 months separating the two from birth, Kyle and Whitney Thomas have formed a bond that has lasted through their first two years at Indiana.

    Kyle, an offensive lineman on the Hoosier football team, and Whitney, a post player who earned All-Big Ten Freshman Team honors for the IU women's basketball team last year, use their bond to support one another as students and as athletes.

    "Kyle knows what we go through as student-athletes," Whitney said. "The time that he puts in, I put in too. We both have to wake up early in the morning for workouts, and we both have long practices."

    Kyle is also very appreciative of having his sister around.

    "I love being here with my sister," Kyle said. "We help each other out. We study together. We'll run together during the off season."

    Kyle and Whitney not only have a brother-sister bond, the two have also formed quite a friendship.

    "We have a good relationship," Whitney said. "We're like best friends. I think we're more friends than brother and sister. He's someone that I look up to and someone that I can talk to."

    Kyle also echoes Whitney's view of what their relationship has grown into.

    "Whitney is my best friend," Kyle said. "She was getting recruited to come to IU when I was a senior (at Bloomington North High School) so she was a junior, and I knew she was going to come to IU. So when I got ready to make my decision, I knew I wanted to go to school with my sister. She's my inspiration and my role model."

    The Bloomington, Ind., natives have also always been competitive with one another. Kyle, a redshirt sophomore, has started every game this season for the Hoosiers at left guard. Whitney returns to an IU women's basketball squad that went 19-14 last season and made a trip to the quarterfinals of the WNIT. A team tri-captain in her sophomore season, Whitney will look to get back to battling the boards for the Hoosiers after averaging a team-high 7.2 rebounds per game her freshman year.

    "We grew up very competitive," Kyle said. "We grew up playing each other one-on-one in basketball, and that's why she is tough, because we played hard. We have the biggest argument going about which sport is harder. She tells me that her basketball practices are harder than my football practices."

    Despite their competitive sides, the love for one another is evident and as the older brother, Kyle will always have an eye on his sister.

    "I'm very protective," Kyle said. "I always look out for Whitney."

    Kyle and the Hoosiers hit the road this weekend as they battle Illinois in Champaign on Saturday, Oct. 7 at 12 p.m. EDT. Whitney and the IU women's basketball team open the season when they host the University of Indianapolis in an exhibition game on Friday, Nov. 3 at 7 p.m. in Assembly Hall.




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