Tens of thousands of fans attending a college football game in Gainesville, Florida this weekend performed a massive sing-along of "I Won't Back Down" in honor of their recently departed hometown hero, Tom Petty.



Gators Coach Jim McElwain, obviously impressed by the incredible reaction of the crowd, has embraced the possibility of making the "I Won't Back Down" sing-along a regular feature at home games. "It was hard not to notice it. I can’t say enough about the fans in The Swamp, and I had some comments from their people afterward, like, ‘Mac, unbelievable environment.’ And it was,” he said. “I credit our fans that show up and cheer our guys on. And to see that after ‘We Are the Boys,’ and to hear that place in unison – that was, it was special. Credit goes to the people who put it together, and more than that, the response then of the fans. And, ultimately, 'I won’t back down' … it kind of hits home for me.”

The Gators also held a moment of silence before the game began, in memory of the mass shooting at the Route 91 Harvest Festival in Las Vegas Las Vegas that occurred earlier in the day on Oct. 2.

On Saturday Night Live, on the same evening as the game, Jason Aldean performed a cold opening covering Petty's "I Won't Back Down" as well, in tribute to both the the rocker and the victims of the Las Vegas shooting. Aldean had been performing when the incident that killed 58 people and injured nearly 500 more began.

Check here to see our newly updated collection of live covers performed in tribute to Petty since his death.

Tom Petty Through the Years: 1976-2017 Photos