When I first learned Linux about 12 years ago I started off using Red Hat. You guys who have used it long enough remember the day when you wanted to install an app you had to not only download the application but 5 or 6 dependencies. In todays world that has changed. Things have been made so much easier. Thru the years I have used different distributions from Red Hat, SuSE, Fedora, Ubuntu, and CentOS . If you have used the Fedora and Red Hat land distro’s then you are not going to have much of a problem.
To do a net install it is not as easy like the other distro’s but if you have seen one version of Linux you have seen them all. The big thing about CentOS that I really like is that apps are tested fast and properly. Updates seem to be coming before some of the other versions of Linux. For now I use CentOS to try to stay on top of it to keep my knowledge up on some of these distributions. So go try and download a copy and throw it in a Virtual environment. See what you think and post a comment if you have a different opinion or question(s).