Loc: Lake Tawakoni, Tx
Pro Angler is a good quality rod that holds up. We use the white catfish ugly stiks because they are 7' instead of PA's 7'6 and the butt of the rod on the US is about 5-6" longer vs. the PA. The PA MH has a similar feel vs the ugly stik in terms of play and fish-fight...only big difference is the parabolic total bend of the PA vs. the ugly sticks softer tip and slower action. Personally I like the slower action of the Ugly Stik for circle hook fishing.
For overall fight for all sizes of catfish, we like the Ugly Stiks...but if you are making a one time purchase and want the rod to hold up for several years the PA may be the better bet as the reel seats on the ugly stiks tend to wallar out a little and the ceramic inserts sometimes come out. I only keep rods a year, so it really doesn't matter to us regarding those 2 things.
One thing to mention...your backdrop when you are fishing is "typically" dark (ie: water) and the white rods stand out with better contrast to the water and the beginning of a take down is easily seen w/ the white ugly stiks vs. the darker rods.
Here are a couple of videos showing the ugly stiks in action:
I have a 7000 on an uglystick catfish rod and one on a proangler. I like both of them. For big fish fighting I give a slight edge to the proangler. For an all around fishing rod the Uglystick wins. I got the proangler with the wood handle and wouldn't trade for it, but you wont catch me giving away my uglystick either.
Commercial fishing must be hard on the equipment. My uglystick is almost 10 years old.
I am trying out the RoughNeck rods from Academy and so far I really like them. They remind me of the Ugly Stick rods and just like Salsa I like a 7 ft rod for the boat over a 7'6. They also have a long handle to help while fighting fish and have stainless eyes as well. For $20 they are really hard to beat if you look at it in a cost effective way. But if you want a battle tested rod then I would go with Ugly Stick. Ugly Sticks are my Tournament fishing fishing rod of choose hands down for anything fresh water.