I wouldn't say he is too young for a retic, just not responsible enough for one and doesn't have the experience. I am 15 and got a burm when I was 14 (that I still have) and I'm getting a genetic striped retic by sometime next year.
I say don't get him anything too small, go with something sort of medium sized so it doesn't get out easily or when it gets lost he can at least find it. If he wants a python, tough luck... make him go with a boa constrictor (Boa constrictor imperator).
If he just has to have a python or he will die or be super upset not getting one then a CB ball python is actually an okay choice even though you wish he not get one. Either that or maybe a childrens python or spotted python, or possibly a blood python if he can keep water and humidity well. Not a rainbow boa because they are high maitenece and require tons of misting and a good cage setup. IJPs and JCPs are really nice but are pencil thin as babies and very nippy... if he can get a good cage and handle a bitey snake go for it. Good luck!
Who are you callin' a freak?!