I'd buy about anything but a Rem 770. The Rem 700 ADL or SPS are much better for about the same price. The new Weatherby Vanguard S2 is very good, as are the TC Venture and Howa. Mossberg makes a pretty good starter rifle also.
My first choice would be a Rem 700 ADL. It's a rifle you can grow with, since there are more after-market stocks, triggers, etc. than one can count. It's ergonomically better than any other lower-priced rifle I've handled. Check recent flyers from Dicks Sporting Goods or Wal-Mart for lower prices, (if necessary).
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― Vikram Seth