Goodbye: Wilton Speight (Will Grad Transfer)

Submitted by Seth on November 26th, 2017 at 5:27 PM

Speight announced on Instagram tonight that he plans to transfer elsewhere for his 5th year

Thank you, Michigan. These past 4 years have been nothing short of spectacular. Enrolling in January of 2014 as a kid from Virginia i didn’t know what to expect. Four years later i leave a Michigan Man. The amazing memories with my teammates, playing under the best coaches in America, and enjoying everything that this wonderful university and town have to offer- what a ride. To the fans that stuck with us through thick and thin— thank you. To Coach Hoke for giving a kid with no offers a chance— thank you. To Coach Harbaugh for coming in and making me a better man and a better quarterback. For understanding this decision of mine and always having my back no matter what— thank you. I don’t know where next will be, and I’ll use these next four weeks to figure that out. i’m excited to keep pursuing my dreams in a new jersey, but will forever root for the boys wearing the winged helmet. Go blue!

A post shared by Wilton Speight (@wiltonspeight_3) on

Speight went from afterthought to quarterbacking the best Michigan team in a decade, toughing out a shoulder injury that couldn’t have been healed in time for Ohio State last year. His 2016 performance against Maryland stands as the best half by a quarterback in program history. Since Michigan fans live all over the country, once his eligibility expires I imagine Wilton will have a hard time ever buying a beer for himself again. We’ll be rooting for him wherever he goes.

Michigan also graduates John O’Korn but returns Brandon Peters and will have redshirt freshman Dylan McCaffrey plus two freshmen, and may look to add one more in the transfer market.


KC Wolve

November 26th, 2017 at 6:49 PM ^

Not saying you are wrong and I hope Patterson comes but there were a lot of rumors that Peters was behind DM for most of the year. There are also rumors that Patterson showed interest and the staff said no. No one knows anything so I’ll pin my hopes on a guy the staff recruited and have seen play for a full season.


November 26th, 2017 at 7:36 PM ^

No one knows if/when the sanctions are coming so how would Patterson have been able to communicate to Michigan that he's coming? 

If he comes before sanctions then he has to sit out a year, which means he would have been no threat to Speight, who only has one year left.

If he told Michigan he would come if there were sanctions, then Michigan surely would not have communicated this to Speight before they received confirmation that the sanctions were coming and Patterson would not have to sit out a year which I'm not even sure if the NCAA knows yet.

Speight leaving has nothing to do with Patterson.


November 26th, 2017 at 6:10 PM ^

Speight would have been swinging against mccaffery hype, Peters "inevitability" and two freshman. This isn't an obvious pivot or verification, it's a guy who has one last chance to lead a team and can pick a place where he drives. Can't begrudge him for it when it likely allows youth development at UM in the process


November 26th, 2017 at 6:01 PM ^

Yes it shows the staffs confidence in Peters, but also McCaffrey. We should be rolling with these two for next year, and start developing McCaffrey against the bad teams when we're up big. That 2019 Quarterback battle is going to be special.


November 26th, 2017 at 6:01 PM ^

Thats one quick firm handshake...less than 24 hours after the end of the regular season.

Wonder if this has anything to do with the Shea Patterson rumours. If the coaches are looking hard at Shea and is getting warm and fuzzies in return then I could def see both parties deciding to move on. 

OTOH it could be that Peters is going to get first dibs on the job going into bowl prep (he played well enough plus Speight could be non-contact for sometime whereas Peter's is likely to be full go much sooner. )


November 26th, 2017 at 6:06 PM ^

You don't have a kid thanking a coach for understanding his reason for leaving and have it be a "tough handshake." He likely knew the drama and stress associated with recovering and fighting off challengers. I'd guess he knew he only gets one more year and wanted the chance for something new. Don't take away from him or the program for something that helped both and genuinely seems his idea


November 26th, 2017 at 6:02 PM ^

Best of luck to Wilton and thanks for 4 years of effort and sacrifice under the winged helmet.

But I don’t get this and I don’t like it. Can’t imagine losing a 5th year multi year starter at QB is ever a good thing. Seemed like he’d at least have a real shot at the job next year, or at a minimum be a valuable backup and advisor to Peters / DCaff.

Any rumblings on why? Maybe he just wants to go somewhere lower pressure given the need to still recover from a couple pretty nasty injuries? Got to be tough to focus on your body under the harsh lights of the Michigan fandom.

Wherever you go young man, make sure they have a good O-Line!


November 26th, 2017 at 6:04 PM ^

Age of the grad transfer is in full go mode.  More and more solid players with a 5th year of eligibility are transferring.  I half-heartedly predicted a week ago that Wilton would do this noting the emergence of Peters and the Don Brown effervescent comments on Dylan McCaffery's scout team play.

Wilton wants to play and compete.

I will follow his career with great interest....just as I followed Shane Morris' move to CMU.

He will graduate with his Michigan degree which is no small feat.

All the best to a truly class act, Wilton Speight.


November 26th, 2017 at 6:05 PM ^

Frankly Im shocked. Although Brandon Peters has shown some signs, Wilton Speight still looks our best quaterback right now. I cant see how he would not have a good chance (and likely be the favorite) to start if he came back next year. 


November 26th, 2017 at 6:08 PM ^

1. Thanks Wilton, I greatly appreciate everything you did for the maize and blue.
2. This is a huge loss for next year. Hope Harbaugh didn't push him out. We had a very high floor with Speight. Peters was good, and showed promise. Dylan McCaffrey is good, but is a question mark. I hope to God he is as good as they say.


November 26th, 2017 at 6:13 PM ^

even before I sipped my 1st beer.

What If...Wilton figured out Peters was the future?

He gave us quality QB play last year - the Iowa game seemed to be his rough spot. Even the OSU game had some ugly but good moments (OT pass to Darboh was great throw). Can't blame him for the FSU lost either - rallied in the 2nd half to take the lead.

Good luck at some school we don't play next year. Maybe Florida?

Year of Revenge II

November 26th, 2017 at 6:14 PM ^

I will never forget the gutty performance against Ohio State in 2016, which was then stolen by the Ohio fan-refs.

I thought Speight would never start a game for UM, and I was wrong.  He developed nicely, and hopefully will keep doing so at the school of his choice. With some more PT, which he was not likely to get here, I am hoping he can make a pro team.

Thanks again Wilton, you are all class.


Year of Revenge II

November 27th, 2017 at 12:20 AM ^

I would say "you cannot be serious!" a la John McEnroe, but your statement is so preposterous that it does not even deserve that response.

But I will play...

No, I do not mean his mistakes in the game, which even healthy players all make.  I mean playing with pain, without full strength in his off shoulder, which affects throwing motion, and playing despite knowing that one hit to the wrong place could damage the shoulder much, much more serious. 

That's what I mean...Now, what in the name of God do you mean?

Barn Animal

November 26th, 2017 at 6:20 PM ^

Without him John O’Korn would have been the qb of the best Michigan team in recent memory. We may not have achieved what we wanted but Speight gave us the chance to compete for a title. Thank you Wilton Speight.


November 26th, 2017 at 6:23 PM ^

BP has shown we can win with him the last month. While speight isn't scarred to compete, even if he and peters are close you have to think the move is to go with the future. So unless speight blew it out of the water it was too big a risk to sit the pine. Both sides win in a way with this move.