Well here I am almost a year later and still no gun :cry:
Just looking at Cabela's and like both of these;
Both are in my price range. Again I'm a noob.
Shotguns are all about fit. You ave to shoulder them and sight them, see what is comfortable for you. All of my shotguns sight different and some I like shooting more than others because of the fit. You have to keep in mind what you plan on doing with the shotgun. If you are only duck hunting, then a synthetic stock and longer barrel are benefits. If you are backpacking then a shorter barrel is a benefit. Personally, I prefer wood stocks but wouldn't shy away from a good synthetic stock, either.
The BPS is a good shotgun, especially if you are a lefty as it drops the shells out the bottom. Some say it is a little heavy, hard to sight - others love it. If you are looking at pump shotguns, I would also look at the Benelli SuperNova and perhaps the Winchester SXP. The SXP isn't that expensive, but lots of people that have them really like them - they shoulder quick and sight nice.
I personally like using a semi-auto as it reduces the recoil, especially on a 12g. With 20g recoil isn't really a concern for me and I quite like my little 16" over under 20g - it has put a lot of grouse on the table and I even bust clays with it sometimes. If you do plan on shooting trap at a range you should know that some ranges ave a minimum 26" barrel rule so that the old Fudds don't come against the fun little short barrels.
As for semi-auto 12g shotguns, the Weatherby SA-08 is the best bang for the buck out there. They were only $600 a few years ago but the dollar has really jumped them up. There are A LOT of opinions on what semi-auto is best; I prefer the old-school long recoil shotguns versus the newer gas block systems. Either way you go, make sure you get one that can shoot steel shot - as that is a legal requirement now for migratory fowl.