Ex-Cal QB Ross Bowers to Transfer for a Second Time

Golden Bears' 2017 starting quarterback spent the past two seasons at Northern Illinois
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Ross Bowers, who was Cal' starting quarterback in 2017, plans to transfer for a second time.

Bowers spent the past two seasons at Northern Illinois, but on Friday he entered the transfer portal as a graduate transfer.

Bowers came to Cal in 2015 when Sonny Dykes was the head coach. He redshirted his first season and was Davis Webb's backup in his second. Bowers became the Bears' starting quarterback in 2017, which was Justin Wilcox's first season as Cal's head coach. 

Bowers started all 12 games in 2017 as third-year sophomore, leading Cal to a 5-7 record while completing 59.0% of his passes for 3,039 yards with 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

Bowers' most memorable play was his flip into the end zone for a touchdown in Cal's 37-3 upset of eighth-ranked Washington State in 2017.

Bowers had a similar touchdown flip in high school:

He was Cal's starter for the 2018 opener against North Carolina, but was replaced by redshirt freshman Chase Garbers in the first quarter. He re-entered the game later in the first half, but did not start the second half and never played for Cal again.

Bowers transferred to Northern Illinois following the 2018 season, and was the Huskies starting quarterback in 2019. He was limited to eight starts that season because of injury and completed 57.8 percent of his passes with seven touchdowns and eight interceptions.

Bowers started all six games for Northern  Illinois in 2020, and had decent statistics, completing 58 percent of his passes with 10 touchdowns and just two interceptions.  But the Huskies finished the season with an 0-6 record.

Since the 2020 season did not count against players' college eligibility, Bowers can play one more season. It is uncertain which school he will choose to play for in 2021.

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Cover photo of Ross Bowers in 2018 by Kelley L Cox, USA TODAY Sports

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