To the next level.

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Just a month and a half into his rookie season, it’s finally safe to say O.J. Mayo is pretty nice. The irony is you couldn’t possibly consider Mayo a safe bet to be the game’s next great scorer. There were too many question marks along his well-documented journey to the League. At this SLAM photo shoot outside of the USC campus, Mayo had everything prove. The bar kept getting raised. The public expected near miracles every game. By Summer 2007 we were well along the peak crescendo of the Mayo hate train. Through it all, Mayo stayed remarkably level. And he’s done it by keeping an indelibly level head. That’s why Mayo–sitting in a drop-top convertible as an incoming freshman in the middle of Hollywood–seems so natural. Mayo is just being himself. One year ago, this was fuel to the hate train. Today, it’s all Mayonnaise.