Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, several player's applaud Wilton Speight's calm under pressure.

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh and several Wolverines discussed the improbable comeback and performance out of sophomore quarterback Wilton Speight in Saturday's 29-26 win at Minnesota.

Wilton Speight was the unlikely hero in Michigan's dramatic 29-26 comeback victory over Minnesota Saturday night.

After senior quarterback Jake Rudock went down and left the game in the second half, the sophomore Speight entered the game with zero career completions.

After three pass attempts, Speight still hadn't come up with a completion as hope for the Wolverines appeared lost without Rudock.

"It's always tough when you're not expecting to go in the game and then in a moments notice he just kind of got thrown into the fire a little bit," junior tight end Jake Butt said. "I think he calmed down as he got a little more experience. Coach (Jim) Harbaugh did his whole deal where he smacks him in the pads and helmet. It looks weird but I think it helped him out a lot.

"Wilt was my roommate this past summer so for him to get thrown into the game, he's been preparing like that would happen throughout the whole summer and fall camp, and that preparation really helped him and helped us when he did get thrown into the fire."

After a less than desirable start, the flames began to quell and Speight's execution, and arm, caught fire.

First hitting Butt on a quick out to the right just shy of the first down marker, Speight then completed his next pass before Michigan sat on Minnesota's 12-yard line with just  over five minutes to play.

Down 26-21, Speight put the Wolverines on top with a deep crossing pattern to Jehu Chesson who had the room to come down with the football in the end zone.

"When we saw the safety kind of rotate and we saw the corner playing soft and all he had to do was put the ball in a certain area," Chesson said. "All I had to do was go up and make the play."

"I'd just like to commend Wilton," added Chesson," for doing that cause that's no easy position to be put in but at the same time that's part of the reason you come to Michigan. To be the quarterback and he came out there, was called upon and did his job."

Noting Speight's improved play in practice throughout the course of the season, Harbaugh believes the decision to stick with him as the backup in an effort to redshirt Shane Morris, an easy one.

Still, asked to come into the game in the position Speight did, on the road and needing to score points, Harbaugh found it difficult to truly describe how impressive it was.

That's saying a lot for a former quarterback nicknamed "Captain Comeback."

"I don't know if I can put it into perspective, to be honest with you," Harbaugh said. "I've never personally been in that position. To come off the bench and lead a fourth quarter comeback, had success just like that in such a dramatic way.

"Of all my first times, well I've had some good ones I guess. A couple good ones. But not the first time playing. The first time playing you'd come in and it'd almost seem like it was disaster, whether it was the first high school game playing, first college game, first pro game was a disaster. The first time I guess I can't relate to that."

At the end of the day, Speight's grit under pressure, even able to improvise to complete the two-point conversion that gave the Wolverines a three-point advantage, can prove to be huge for his and this team's confidence in him.

"It's great, it's dramatic," Harbaugh said. "I don't know who else has done something like that, nothing else is coming to my mind right now.

"We'll use it as a growing experience, I think it's really going to benefit him and it'll be great for his confidence. I imagine when we go to practice today that No. 3 will have a pep in his step, there'll be a bounce to him."


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