CHAMPAIGN, Ill., (WCIA) — Many organizations in Champaign County are working to help kids create relationships with others both inside and out of the classroom. Willie Comer’s Midnight Basketball group is helping with that.

Comer eats lunch with young men in middle school and high school during the week, but keeps them involved at night as well.

He said his basketball group is more than just playing the game. He added that the most important part are the connections they’re making with adult mentors. Comer said it’s best to learn the basketball terms, but then apply them to real life.

“Every time you step out of bounds in life, there’s a referee who’s going to pull you in,” Comer said. “It’s either your teacher, your parents, and if you get old enough, it will end up being law enforcement. Live life in bounds.”

The group meets regularly from 7 p.m. to midnight, and Comer said the relationships they make will go a long way in the future.