BERKELEY -- Over the first week of fall camp, the most improved player on the California offense has been quarterback Ross Bowers. It's tough to focus on a quarterback who isn't the starter, but as a redshirt freshman, Bowers has a very high ceiling -- and if he winds up winning the backup job, he'll have the inside track on the starting job next season. In two full-pads practices, Bowers has gone 13-for-17 for 120 yards and one touchdown, and on Saturday, completed his first five straight passes, three for gains of 11 yards or more.
The biggest surprise thus far really made his presence known on Saturday: Freshman running back Zion Echols. While fellow freshman Derrick Clark had a one-yard touchdown run, it was Echols who popped, running for 30 yards on three carries.
It's tough to say that freshman defensive end Evan Weaver is a surprise, because he came in so highly-touted, but it's certainly unexpected that he'd be so effective, so early, in providing pressure off the edge, and getting his hands into passing lanes.
Finally, the guy who's been making a run is safety-turned-linebacker Derron Brown. Though he was held out on Saturday, he's been the most exciting linebacker to watch so far, given his athleticism, speed and length. When he gets back on the field, pay attention to No. 4 in blue.
Week One Roundup
- DAVIS WEBB HAS FULL CONFIDENCE IN CAL OL, SAYS BOWERS MOST IMPROVED
- DAY FIVE: FULL PADS, FULL CONTACT
- WHAT HAS SURPRISED SONNY DYKES?
- CAMP FILM DAY FOUR: LINES DO BATTLE
- CAL NAMES DAVIS WEBB STARTING QUARTERBACK
- CLARK STANDING ON OWN TWO FEET
- CAL OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR TALKS QUARTERBACKS
- BTTV: FALL CAMP LINEBACKERS
- BTTV: FALL CAMP RUNNING BACKS
- CAL FOOTBALL 2016: FALL CAMP CENTRAL