Fifth-year seniors have been as common at Vanderbilt as bowl invitations. The Commodores haven't had a winning record since 1982, and who wants to come back for yet another losing season? But tight end Elliott Carson believed this season could be different. Last year, when Vandy went 5-6, the 6' 6", 250-pound Carson caught 25 passes and was named second-team All-SEC. A human and organizational development major, he could have graduated on time in May but is one of five redshirt-senior starters who cling to the dream of leading the Commodores to their first bowl game in 18 years. Carson, who expects to graduate in December, caught 10 passes for 128 yards in Vanderbilt's first two games, losses to Miami ( Ohio) and Alabama. The dream of a bowl game is growing dim, but Carson and his classmates have set an example. Behind them are 14 juniors who are eligible to be fifth-year guys next fall.