A local athlete is working to make a difference in the community where he plays football.

Kobe Rios is a Rock Island native and is now playing football at Illinois State University.

Rios is using his name and likeness to sell merchandise for a community center in Bloomington, where they plan to sponsor a youth football team.

This comes after college student-athletes became able to make a profit off of their name, image and likeness.

“This is just the start of a — I call it a project,” Rios said. “It’s just the start, just the clothes is a start. I have bigger plans, later down the road, with what I’m doing right now. But just seeing the support from everyone who bought a hoodie or shirt…”

All proceeds from Rios’ merchandise will be going back to Western Avenue Community Center.