I would point him in the direction of the 1089 GL3. The best performing rod on the market for the dollar, hands down!!
Given that the rod is $300, he now has $425 to spend. Now he needs a Ross Canyon in either the 4 or the 5 thats it also around $300, maybe $350.
So in the best case scenario he has $125 to spend. Couldnt help him with the lines though although Rio does make a Saltwater Versi-tip system which run $125. And any shop you go to should throw in the backing at no charge with a rod and a reel purchase.
So now he is all set!!
Ryan S. Petzold
aka Sparkey and/or Special