The winner is expected to earn a rematch against 135-pound champion Dominick Cruz in 2012.
Faber is no doubt disappointed that he failed in his bid to earn an immediate rubber match against "The Dominator," coming up short at UFC 132 via thrilling five-round war.
While he put on a "Fight of the Night" performance, it wasn't enough to convince the matchmakers to do it again ... not yet, anyway.
That's because Bowles, himself a former champion, also competed at the "Cruz vs. Faber 2" event, working as hard as he ever has to earn a unanimous decision win over the always-game Takeya Mizugaki.
It was the first time in 11 career fights the West Virginia native has made it to the judges' scorecards.
While it was initially thought that Bowles suffered yet another hand injury, it was later learned that he was merely banged up and he began making his voice heard that he was the best option to take on Cruz.
After all, the lone blemish on Bowles' otherwise spotless resume is courtesy of "The Dominator." He was losing the fight -- badly -- but the stoppage only came because of an injury and a responsible cageside doctor.
If he wants another crack at Cruz, he'll have to earn it the hard way.