BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Southern and Grambling just can’t stand one another. It shows every year at the Bayou Classic. But when disaster strikes, Southern hospitality shows on Jaquavis Richmond’s birthday.

“You just love that, just to see all these people here from Southern,” Richmond said. “Even though I don’t like them at all, you know, they like just had a love from them. It means a lot. It warms my heart.”

“Doesn’t matter if you’re Grambling, Southern, FAMU, Jackson State, we’re all football players we’re all in the SWAC, we’re family,” said Dupree Fuller, Southern Football tight end.

Richmond had severe neck and head injuries during the LSU-Grambling game that could have left him paralyzed.

“It’s not about football anymore bro,” Richmond said. “It’s about me living. I could’ve lost my life.”

“You never want to hear about a football player falling,” Fuller said. “Even if you might not know him or know what really happened. We all feel that because we’re all players and you never know when it could be your last snap.”

“Breaking your neck in five different places, nah bro you don’t live from that,” Richmond said. “God had a calling for me.”

After successful surgery at Our Lady of the Lake, Richmond has been at the NeuroMed Center in Baton Rouge where his recovery continues to progress.

“He has been very motivated and it has shown with a lot of support from his family and friends,” said Kelsey Pace, a physical therapist at the NeuroMedical Center. “Today we were able to walk without using any type of assistive devices, which was awesome.”

“Step by step,” Richmond said. “Okay, I couldn’t move my hands at first. I can move them now. Thank you, Jesus. I couldn’t walk. I can walk now. Thank you, Jesus.”

While thankful for the love from Jaguar nation, Richmond still reps his Gram Fam.

“Oh, I can’t wait for that Bayou Classic because these Southern people they showing love,” Richmond said. “But we ain’t going to show no love at that Bayou Classic. I can promise you.”