TOLEDO (WTOL) - A former Bowling Green State University basketball player still needs help as she battles multiple sclerosis.
Jasmine Matthews is trying to raise money for a stem cell treatment that could help her return to normal.
WTOL spoke with several of Matthews’ former teammates, friends, and college coach, along with some of her competitors. They've all gone their separate ways, but one constant remains -- their admiration for Jasmine, and their confidence she'll persevere.
"She was an awesome teammate,” said Miriam Justinger, who played with Jasmine at BGSU and still keeps in touch daily. “Her energy was always contagious."
"I remember her being fiercely competitive all the time," former teammate and roommate Alexis Rogers said.
"She was a star in her own right but a person who believed team-first," former BGSU head coach Curt Miller added.
Matthews was a highly-recruited guard out of Matteson, Illinois - a Chicago suburb. She turned into a valuable role player when she wasn't battling injury.
WTOL published a story a few weeks ago on how Matthews went from a fully-able basketball player, to an MS patient, to a woman without functioning legs -- in a matter of months.RELATED: Community donates thousands to former BGSU basketball player with MS
"Maybe three weeks later I lost everything,” Matthews said. “Like I completely was disabled and I was scared because I was like, 'OK, I got diagnosed with MS and I know it varies person to person, but I know there are levels to MS.'"
Now, folks who know her said they didn’t have any words when they heard about her diagnosis.
"I was shocked," Rogers said.
"Finding out how fast it progressed, it just kind of takes your breath away,” said former teammate Allison Papenfuss, now a strength coach at BGSU. “To know that that's a kid who you were running miles with that all of a sudden is in a wheelchair. You're trying to do anything you can to help."
The help came, and continues to come. Matthews set up a GoFundMe with a hefty goal of $125,000. It’s the cost for a stem cell treatment that’s already yielded positive results on others.
"You can see some of the names on the GoFundMe that she set up and it's like, wow that's really awesome,” Justinger said. “They barely know her or don't even know her at all and just the community that's been there for her is awesome."
The donations have flooded in, even from BGSU’s biggest rival.
"I know that this is one way to make it possible for her to have a procedure that could really make a difference in her life," said University of Toledo women’s basketball coach Tricia Cullop, who donated to the GoFundMe.
"We're using basketball as a platform to save a life and I hope people can get rid of the rivalry for a second or whatever it might be and really support her," said former UT guard Courtney Ingersoll.
The mission hasn't been achieved yet, though. Matthews still needs help reaching her goal.
"There may come a circumstance when we all need help and I think what's great about this community is they always step up, you can always count on them, and I hope more people will step up and help her," Cullop said.
"The wins and losses, no one really remembers those,” said Tiffin University women’s basketball coach Jessie Ivey, who’s gotten to know Matthews and asked her to give pregame pep-talks to her team this season. “But everyone remembers this and Jazz, she'll remember this for as long as she lives."
Spoiler alert: she plans on living for quite a while, and even wants to become a Division-I basketball official when -- not if -- she beats MS.
"I think it will all tie back in to, you know, the family and the way she was brought up,” Miller said. “Her perseverance is certainly what she's gonna need through this journey, but will ultimately be what will help her beat it."
"Just her competitive spirit,” former BGSU assistant coach Brandi Poole said. “She's gotta attack this the way she would anything else and if athletics teaches you anything, it's how to handle adversity."
“It would be awesome, to see someone who is so energetic, who’s always been a leader and a fighter, to be able to continue her dreams,” Genell Matthews, Jasmine’s mother, said.