Despite almost 2,000 miles separating them and never meeting in person until their 20s, Chubath and Khor Tut are as alike as any set of brothers could be.
Today they are more than just brothers — they are teammates on the San Diego City College men’s basketball team.
“(My) first interaction with (Khor) and my other brother … got so detailed that we actually are talking about the same music, the same movie scenes, basketball highlights that we’ve seen,” Chubath Tut said. “We know the same stuff but grew up (separate).”
Chubath Tut, who grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, was only able to communicate with his California sibling through Facebook and video games until summer 2015, when Khor Tut, an Escondido native, and his other brother picked up Chubath Tut from the airport.
“Why is this guy so like (me)?,” Khor Tut remembered thinking. “It was weird.”
Added Chubath Tut: “Even today, like we would be ‘remember what happened in 2007’ and he would know exactly what I’m talking about, not just basketball.”
San Diego City College wraps up the regular season this week with games at San Diego Mesa (Wednesday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m.) and at home against Imperial Valley (Friday, Feb. 22 at 7 p.m.).
The brothers have a fun-loving rivalry on and off the court.
“Anything that’s playful and fun we are going to do it,” said Khor Tut, who plays forward for the Knights.
Khor Tut has played in 25 games for the Knights (15-11, 6-2), who sit in second place in the PCAC Southern Division behind Southwestern College.
While Khor Tut is adding 5.2 points and 3.3 rebounds per game, Chubath Tut is adding valuable depth to the City College lineup, seeing time in 18 games.
Chubath and Khor Tut’s parents are refugees from South Sudan who moved to San Diego. Their father is a politician who was financially stable enough to support two wives in a polygamous relationship.
After adjusting to the American norms, the relationship between Chubath Tut’s mother and father did not work out. Pregnant with Chubath Tut, she left for Nashville because she had relatives already living there.
Despite the bumps and bruises they’ve encountered growing up and the different lifestyle their parents had, Khor Tut said the benefits have been worth it.
“Luckily we got a relationship in exchange,” he said. “It’s one of the best things that’s happened to me in the past five years.”
The Tut brothers are now enjoying life together and want to push forward together.
“I don’t want to succeed with no one else besides my family and my brother,” Khor Tut said.
Both sophomores at City College, there are no plans on transferring at the moment. The Tut brothers have only one thing in mind.
“We are focusing on getting that playoffs placement,” Chubath Tut said.