Kiva Thomas, #22, Running Back
Kiva has been playing pro football for 13 years. She grew up surrounded by boys and always played football in the neighborhood and could beat all the boys, but she grew up in a time when women were not football players--they were cheerleaders. Her dad wouldn’t let her play, because… girls just didn’t play football. Kiva got stuck being a cheerleader, and she hated every minute of it.
Kiva loves the camaraderie with her teammates but says the biggest challenge is that the players come from many different skill levels and backgrounds. Veteran players, who have been around 10+ years, grew up in a time when playing football as a girl was never an option, but times have changed, to an extent, as the younger generation of 20-somethings have experienced opportunities to play on pop warner leagues. Women of Kiva’s era did not have the opportunities that exist now, and she is proud to have been a part of this transition, watching a sport like football come to embrace female athletes. Regardless of skill level, background or a society that may still struggle with women in pads and helmets, Kiva recognizes that “you work, ya just do it-come together, suck it up and knock it out.”
Kiva credits her dad and brothers for being there, encouraging her and making her tough. She learned strength through support from a huge gamut of men and women in her family, her friends and her coaches. Aside from her love of football, she played basketball at the University of Louisville, majoring in computer engineering. She currently works as a web developer/business analyst. Kiva thanks her family and friends for standing by her.
Please help the team and Kiva. Anything you give this month will be split 50/50 between the Indy Crash to prepare for the 2016 season and to help pay Kiva’s 2016 player fees. You can make donations on our GoFundMe.