The Wolverines rallied from a 19-point halftime deficit, and when Wisconsin's Allan Evridge misfired on a 2-point conversion pass with 13 seconds left, Michigan had sealed a 27-25 victory over the ninth-ranked Badgers on Saturday.
"I'm so proud of these guys because there was probably some doubts in their mind about whether we could do it," Rodriguez said. "This can be a really big win for us."
Wisconsin (3-1, 0-1 Big Ten) seemed to tie the game and set up overtime with David Gilreath's 22-yard touchdown catch and Travis Beckum's reception for 2. But the conversion was negated by a penalty, and on the retry, Evridge's pass went high and through the end zone.
Badgers coach Bret Bielema said it was the right call because Beckum didn't line up correctly.
"He should've been lined up off the line of scrimmage," Bielema said. "Obviously, it would've made the play legal."
Michigan (2-2, 1-0 Big Ten) had five turnovers in the first half, leading to a 19-0 deficit, and didn't score until late in the third quarter. But they scored 20 points in the fourth quarter and took a 20-19 lead on John Thompson's 25-yard interception return for a touchdown with 10:27 left in the fourth quarter, just seconds after Brandon Minor's 34-yard touchdown run.
Sam McGuffie's 3-yard touchdown run with made it 27-19 for Michigan with 5:11 left.
When the comeback victory was complete, Rodriguez's team had rallied from the biggest deficit the Wolverines have overcome since they started playing at their storied stadium in 1927. Michigan's rallied from 17-point deficits at home against Virginia in 1995.