To add to Capemay's questions of acreage and budget, is your yard fairly smooth or fairly rough? I ask this because I have been mowing a neighbors country yard that 'something' (Possum or Armadillo) has been rooting up part of the already fairly rough yard. With my Bad Boy MZ48 I have to slow down quite a bit for the rough ride. 20" (or bigger) drive tires would probably smooth out the ride (or getting a ZTR with some sort of suspension. Other than 'wanting' bigger drive wheels for what I
am mowing...I really like my MZ. I had to 'reclaim' this same yard, and it should have been bushhogged in some areas...but I put my deck on it's highest setting and went after it. The 26hp Pro Briggs did awesome.
The Briggs can be a little cold natured when trying to start it if it's been sitting for quite a while. I can engage the 48" deck with the throttle at barely an idle. The mower is very well built with it's fabbed deck and 2"x2" frame. As was already mentioned the Hustler Sport is built just as well. I believe it has extras such as a cup holder and a designated spot for an optional hour meter. I chose the MZ over the Sport because it fit me better...sat a little higher, better for my long legs.
On paper (and looked at some in person), I shopped other mowers in the general price range and to me these 2 mowers were the most mower for my money.
Here's some pics and comments on my mower: