Dowling attended the University of Virginia. As a freshman in 2007, Dowling played in 12 games recording 44 tackles and two interceptions. As a sophomore in 2008 he started nine of 11 games. He finished the season with 43 tackles and a team leading three interceptions. In 2009 Ras-I Dowling was voted All-ACC second team.
He was also awarded ACC Defensive Player of the week vs. Indiana with nine tackles and the first sack of his career. He ended the season with three interceptions. Dowling was voted 2010 Pre-season All-ACC selection and second team All-American for the first time in his career. Dowling was a former 2nd round draft pick of the New England Patriots that just didn’t work out. The Jets signed him to the practice squad.
Jets sign CB Ras I Dowling to practice squad