Confirmation could come as early as today or Wednesday. If the Sugar Bowl will confirm that it will take the loser of Saturday's Southeastern Conference championship game between No. 1 Florida and No. 2 Alabama, then the other bowls can announce their selections.
"With the economy the way it is, every bowl wants to get started selling tickets as quickly as possible," the source said.
The Music City Bowl is on Sunday night in prime time on ESPN. Every four years the network can ask the Music City Bowl to be a prime time game, and the network exercised that option this year.
UK's fans make them an obvious choice
With the game on a Sunday night two days after Christmas, Music City Bowl officials know they need a team with fans who can easily travel to Nashville. Kentucky fans brought record crowds to the game each season and UK also had over 20,000 fans at its game at Vanderbilt earlier this season.
"Kentucky is just the obvious choice for the Music City Bowl," the source said. "There's really no other team available, except Tennessee, that could match UK's crowd."
The Vols are expected to receive a bid to the Outback Bowl even though rumors were circulating that Kentucky was still a possibility. Auburn and Georgia are the top candidates for the Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta with South Carolina a possible compromise choice. All three teams are 7-5 just like Kentucky and Tennessee.
"I don't think anyone is quite sure what the Chick-fil-A Bowl will do, so that could change some scenarios," the source said.
Kentucky learned that Saturday when Georgia upset Georgia Tech and South Carolina upset Clemson to get their seventh win and cost UK a chance at the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
Still, Kentucky fans have enjoyed the Music City Bowl (see comments at vaughtsviews.com from fans to verify this), it is played at the home of the Tennessee Titans and it will provide national exposure for the program.
So barring something totally unexpected, look for the Cats to be back in Nashville looking for their eighth win.