Zach Johnson

Zach Johnson Confirmed as Cal’s No. 2 Quarterback — For Now


Cal offensive coordinator Bill Musgrave confirmed what had become increasingly clear recently — that Zach Johnson is the Bears’ No. 2 quarterback, at least for now.

Johnson and starter Chase Garbers received most of the work in the Bears’ first two scrimmages, and Johnson, who was a true freshman during the 2020 season, put up some impressive numbers.

Johnson was 14-for-16 for 151 yards, four touchdowns and no interceptions in the first game-situation scrimmage two weeks ago. In the second scrimmage session this past Saturday, Johnson was 10-of-12 for 99 yards with a 4-yard TD to Justin Richard Baker.

Johnson will work with the second-team offense during Cal’s spring game on Saturday (2 p.m., Pac-12 Network, public not allowed to attend in person). And Musgrave said Wednesday, Johnson is the backup quarterback at the moment.

“Right now he is,” Musgrave said Wednesday. “He’ll be No. 2 when we go into the spring game.on Saturday. He’ll roll with the twos, Chase will roll with the ones. Both Robby [Rowell] and Spencer [Barsch] will get the rest of the reps.

“We’re still quite a ways away, but as we stand now, Zach’s rolling with the twos.”

The backup quarterback spot opened up when Devon Modster, the Bears’ backup quarterback the past two seasons, opted to enter the transfer portal. Then Jaden Casey, who, like Johnson, was a freshman in 2020, also entered the transfer portal.

The one potential challenge for the backup quarterback spot could come from incoming freshman Kai Millner, although it will be difficult for Millner to catch up by the time the Bears play their 2021 opener against Nevada on Sept. 4.

Millner is expected to arrive at Cal in June, and Musgrave spoke briefly about him in the video below.

Millner is a highly rated prospect who received additional attention when he performed a blind, over-the-head pass for a successful two-point conversion during a game last fall.

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Cover photo of Zach Johnson by Al Semeno, KLC Fotos

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Follow Jake Curtis of Cal Sports Report on Twitter: @jakecurtis53

Find Cal Sports Report on Facebook by searching: @si.calsportsreport or going to https://www.facebook.com/si.calsportsreport

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