XXL has announced its Freshman Class of 2020, and it includes Polo G, Jack Harlow, NLE Choppa and more.
On August 11, the magazine revealed the line-up for its annual list of up-and-coming rappers. Among the 12 faces introduced on this year’s roster are Polo G, Jack Harlow and NLE Choppa. Calboy, Baby Keem, CHIKA, Rod Wave, Lil Tjay and Fivio Foreign are also included on the list. Meanwhile, Mulatto and Lil Keed will represent Atlanta in this year’s Freshman Class.
Rounding out the list is San Francisco rapper 24kGoldn, who earned the last spot through fan votes. “i remember being a sophomore in highschool when the 2016 list came out and tellin my friends ‘watch imma get that shit one day’ and i guess today is that day 🤷🏽♂️,” the rapper born Golden Landis Von Jones wrote on Instagram.
“To anyone that ever listened to my music, came to a show, voted for me, or even just told a friend about me-remember your power, because you made this happen 💛I LOVE U GUYS THIS IS ONLY THE BEGINNING.”
According to XXL, Pop Smoke was originally the first 2020 Freshman to be inducted. However, due to his tragic passing in February this year and other circumstances, XXL says it has been “prevented from including Pop as part of the cover posthumously.” “To us, he is still part of the class,” the magazine wrote. “Brooklyn drill scene. RIP Pop Smoke.”
Over the next few weeks, the elected rappers will go head to head, battling in cyphers and dropping new songs. Hitmaker Jetsonmade will serve as the series’ first-ever music curator, providing the emcees with fresh beats for their upcoming freestyles.
Many members of the 2020 Freshman Class have dropped new full-length projects in recent months. In May Polo G dropped The Goat and Lil Tjay the mixtape State of Emergency, while last week NLE Choppa put out Top Shotta and Rod Wave expanded his album Pray 4 Love with a deluxe version. Jack Harlow has shot to greater prominence with his hit single “What’s Poppin,” which was recently remixed by Lil Wayne, DaBaby and Tory Lanez.
And check out the XXL cover below: