Every year since 1998, ESPN The Magazine has recognized an elite group of emerging athletes to watch in the year ahead -- athletes we call NEXT. They are competitors not only on the cusp of stardom, but on the verge of transcending their sports. NEXT is what happens when the hype is real.
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- Next or bust?
- It was beginner's luck at The Mag in 1998, when the inaugural issue correctly picked the NEXT big stars. But did the streak continue? Find out where NEXT cover athletes are now in "The Mag Daily" on our iPad app. Download the app »