Depends on what you're fishing for.>bass
Fast to extra fast action. Medium to heavy power depending on what you'll be throwing (MH will do everything, but will be a little hard to do finesse with). Shore fishermen tend to like 6.5-7ft rods, boat fishermen like 7-7.5ft rods.>panfish
UL or light power, fast or extra fast action. Length is largely personal preference but if you're a bank fisherman really long rods tend to get you hung up in trees more.>trout excluding steelhead
UL or light power, medium-fast to fast action, 6-7ft.>small catfish such as bullhead and channel cats, on smaller waters
Medium action, ML-MH power, as long as you can cast without getting hung up and still fits in your vehicle>big catfish from a boat
heavy to extra heavy power, medium action, 5-6ft boat rod>big catfish from shore
heavy to extra heavy power, medium action, as long as you can transport
Common desire is a very sensitive rod. Can't set the hook on a fish you don't know is there. Ugly Stiks, especially the GX2s, are extremely insensitive.
Another common desire is 1-piece rods. They may, depending on manufacturer, be a little more sensitive than 2-piece rods but they are always more durable. I realize a long 1-piece rod is impractical for people with small cars though.
Ugly Stiks are JUNK. They're insensitive, the guides are easily cut by braided line, and the guide feet are fragile. The guides are also spaced poorly and the rods are badly balanced and heavy for their size and rating.