Tom Petty Day’s schedule of events ahead of the LSU game

The Florida Gators will celebrate the Gainesville native with “Tom Petty Day” on Saturday, October 15. The celebration will begin on Friday.

On Oct. 2, 2017, Rock-and-Roll Hall of Famer and Gainesville native Tom Petty passed away due to cardiac arrest. He was 66 years old.

On Oct. 7, 2017, the Florida Gators lost a close matchup against LSU 17-16. While the game didn’t cause celebration, the Tom Petty tribute between the third and fourth quarters did. In remembrance of Petty, The Swamp sang “Won’t Back Down” after “We Are The Boys” in a tribute to Gainesville’s finest. What originated as a one-time thing, instantly turned into Florida’s newest tradition.

Saturday, the University of Florida Athletic Association will celebrate the first-ever “Tom Petty Day” to honor Petty’s contributions to the City of Gainesville and the University of Florida. Petty once worked as a groundkeeper for the University of Florida before he made it big in the music industry.

The university has also announced that it will award Petty an honorary posthumous Doctor of Music in May 2023.

Florida Collection has partnered with The Tom Petty Estate to create apparel licensed by Original Retro Brand and other gear available for purchase online at the Gator Sportshop and the UF Bookstore. They are also available at TomPetty.com.

The Tom Petty Estate is donating its full proceeds from the sales of Tom Petty Day X Florida Collection merchandise to give back to underserved communities in Gainesville. Kids Count and Family Promise will be the recipients this year.

Here is a full schedule of events for Tom Petty Day, beginning on Friday, Oct. 14, per the Florida Gators’ official website.

Tim Tebow confirms documentary on infamous 2008 Florida team is in the works

Former Gators QB Tim Tebow talks about an upcoming documentary on the 2008 Florida Gators.

One of the most famous, or infamous, depending on how you look at it, college football teams in the history of the sport is getting its close up. 

After months of speculation, Florida Gator legend Tim Tebow confirmed a documentary is in the works for the 2008 Florida national title team to Mackenzie Salmon on Sports Seriously. 

“I’m not sure what I’m allowed to say about it yet,” said a reluctant Tebow, trying to not spoil any of the details. “But I want to get a chance to actually see it.” 

Of course, the 08’ Gators are remembered for going 13-1 and defeating the Oklahoma Sooners in the national championship game that season. But today, it’s mostly known as the Gators team that had the likes of Aaron Hernandez, Riley Cooper and Percy Harvin on the roster. 

Head coach Urban Meyer and Tebow are expected to be key figures interviewed in the documentary. The Gator legend didn’t want to give away too much but admitted it was fun to look back at this legendary season in college football.

“It was fun having the chance to be able to film it and I will tell you what those were some really fun years. It’s some of the most special times of my life and to be able to look back at it with some of my teammates will be really fun.”

Former Gator, Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte auctioning off six medals

Ryan Lochte took home plenty of medals after competing in four Olympic Games, and now he’s ready to let a few of them go (for some cash, of course).

Behind Michael Phelps, [autotag]Ryan Lochte[/autotag] is the most decorated swimmer in Olympic history with 12 medals (six gold, three silver and three bronze). Six of those, the bronze and silver ones, are up for auction, according to the Associated Press.

This is no money-making grab, though. Lochte gave the medals to a third party and everything earned goes “straight to the charity.” The medals are being sold in three lots by RR Auction in Boston and bidding ends July 21. The charity selected is the Jorge Nation Foundation.

The first lot contains a silver medal, Lochte’s first individual Olympic medal, from the 200-meter individual medley at the 2004 Athens Games. Its estimated value is $10,000 or more.

Lot No. 2 is a pair of bronze medals from the 2008 Beijing Games where Lochte placed third in the 200 IM and 400 IM. The estimated value is $12,000 or more.

The third lot is valued at $60,000 or more and contains three medals from the 2012 London Games, two silvers (200 IM and 4×100 freestyle relay) and a bronze (200 backstroke). Also for sale is a 14k white gold Olympic ring and a Breitling watch with black diamonds that Lochte bought for himself after the London Games.

When asked why he was parting ways with the medals, Lochte admitted that they weren’t of much personal value to him.

“I’m not one to be all sentimental about medals,” Lochte told The Associated Press. “My medals are just sitting in my closet collecting dust. The memories that I have is what means the most.”

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Former Gator Patric Young provides update following crash

Patric Young was involved in a scary rollover accident but he seems to be in good spirits after addressing things on social media.

Former Gator men’s basketball standout [autotag]Patric Young[/autotag] was involved in a rollover car crash Wednesday near Verdigre, Nebraska, according to a report from the Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan.

He approached an unfamiliar intersection and veered off the road causing his car to flip once before settling back on its wheels. His passenger was uninjured, but Young didn’t have his seatbelt on and was transported to the hospital following the accident.

Gator Nation caught wind of the accident on Saturday and immediately sent well wishes to Young on social media. Lawyer Darren Heitner shared that he spoke with Young and that he was in good spirits while waiting to be transferred from South Dakota to Denver.

Young addressed things himself on Sunday in a series of three tweets (below). He thanked everyone for the support and leaned heavily on his faith.

Young played for the basketball team from 2010-14, reaching three-straight Elite Eights and a Final Four. He averaged 11 points and 6.2 rebounds in 2013-14 and started all but two of the team’s 39 games.

Despite earning All-SEC honors and being named an AP All-American as a senior, Young went undrafted and spent time overseas before stepping away in 2020. He’s most recently been seen as a college basketball studio host on the SEC Network.

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Legendary Voice of the Gators, Mick Hubert, calling it a career

Oh, my! Mick Hubert is saying farewell to Gator Nation. He’ll call his final three games for the Orange and Blue over the weekend.

For 33 years, Mick Hubert has served as the Voice of the Gators. He’s called some of the biggest moments in program history, and now he’s decided to call it a career, according to the University Athletic Association.

This weekend’s baseball regular-season finale will be Hubert’s final three games with the Orange and Blue. He and his wife Judi will move to Sarasota in the coming weeks to a home they purchased in 2019. While Hubert’s departure is undoubtedly shocking for many in Gator Nation — especially those who have only known one man as the Voice of the Gators — it’s something that’s been in the works for a while.

“That’s going to be it,” Hubert said. “This wasn’t the end of a five-year plan. I don’t know if I can explain how I knew, but I knew. I had been considering this for a little while. I just had to do some praying about it and enjoy every game.”

Up until a couple of years ago, Hubert thought he’d be doing this until he was at least an octogenarian. But time changes a person and he’s well at peace with his decision to walk away from the booth. With over 2,500 games called between football, men’s basketball and baseball, there’s little left to cross off the bucket list. He was there for all three of Florida’s football national championships, the back-to-back basketball championships and a College World Series win.

Ever the professional, Hubert never took a sick day and only missed a few basketball games because of the football schedule. He said that preparing throughout the week for football games was a joy for him and that he often felt like a fan when Saturday rolled around.

“I hope they heard the enthusiasm, and the credibility is important to me,” he said. “You need to be factual and credible, but you need to be enthusiastic. That’s what I always felt. I always wanted to take my audience on a roller-coaster ride of emotions. I also wanted to give them enough information so they could paint that picture in their mind.”

There are few who withstand the test of time in the play-by-play industry as well as Hubert has. Going out on his own terms at a time where he feels comfortable is about all you can ask for after three decades of dedicated service to a program.

It’s a bittersweet goodbye for everyone involved, but at least the fans get three more games with Hubert over the weekend.

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15 famous people you didn’t know attended the University of Florida

You might be surprised by how many famous and accomplished people are Florida Gators.

The University of Florida has a rich history of producing top talent in a variety of industries, from science to theater, as well as in business and government. The state’s flagship school has been a bastion of higher education in the south for well over a century, graduating the best and brightest that the Sunshine State has to offer.

Of course, there are names like [autotag]Tim Tebow[/autotag], [autotag]Steve Spurrier[/autotag] and other athletes who are the most renowned among the greatest Gators, but there have plenty who have achieved greatness off the field as well. Not to mention a few who did compete on the gridiron for the Orange and Blue who later found further success in media and entertainment.

We composed an alphabetical list of the 15 most famous attendees and graduates of the University of Florida that you probably did not realize graced the hallowed halls in Gainesville. Take a look below at who we selected for this elite group of Gators.