Ole Miss quarterback Matt Corral found Sanders trailing up the sideline and threw to his back shoulder. Sanders spun around, somehow got free from an Alabama defensive back, jumped and made the catch for the first down. He also managed to get a foot inbounds for the first down.
Braylon Sanders made a spinning catch. (Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports)
The drive ended against No. 1-ranked Alabama when the Rebels turned the ball over on downs near the goal line.
Sanders returned to Ole Miss after playing in 2020 by using the extra year of eligibility afforded him due to the coronavirus pandemic. He appeared in nine games for the Rebels last season and finished with 15 catches for 376 yards and four touchdowns.
Mississippi head coach Lane Kiffin, left, and Alabama head coach Nick Saban share a laugh as they meet in the middle of the field before their game, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)
Entering Saturday, Sanders had eight catches for 133 yards and two touchdowns on the season.
Ole Miss entered the game as the No. 12 team in the nation with a Heisman Trophy contender under center in Corral. Lane Kiffin is also looking for revenge on Nick Saban after last year’s shootout that saw Alabama win the game 63-48.
Mississippi quarterback Matt Corral (2) warms up before an NCAA college football game against Alabama, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)
Saban has never lost to a former assistant coach.