The key is the SEC not having a team in the national championship game in addition to the Sugar Bowl.
Vanderbilt's upset of Georgia helped the Commodores' case. But Vandy is currently sitting on three wins and needs three more to become bowl eligible. The remainder of the Vandy schedule includes South Carolina, at Duke, Florida, at Kentucky and Tennessee.
Only in the Duke game will Vandy be favored. The Commodores' best chances appear to be Duke, at Kentucky and South Carolina.
Kentucky's chances look a whole lot better and that's before kickoff at LSU.
The Wildcats already have three wins. Their remaining schedule includes a trip to Mississippi State, home against Georgia, Vanderbilt and UL-Monroe before ending the season at Tennessee.
You've got to figure Kentucky to be favored in three of those (State, Vandy and ULM). That would get the Cats to the magical six number and give the East five possible bowl teams (Florida, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina and Kentucky).
In the SEC West, you've got to figure Auburn, Arkansas, LSU and even Alabama are locks to go bowling.
That's nine teams and the I-Bowl red coats can breathe a little easier.