+1 for the experience. There has always been a lot of discussion about meat vs. "trophy" hunting and there are people who specifically do both. I think there is another aspect to it that many hunters understand but have a hard time putting into words.
Specifically, sportsmen deeply respect the game animals they pursue. There is a bond that non-hunters have a difficult time understanding between the two. I eat the game that I harvest, and enjoy it a great deal. When I started hunting, and for many years thereafter, I took young animals when the opportunities presented themselves. Over time, my understanding of the concept of fair chase evolved. I began to realize that meeting an animal on its terms, and allowing it to use all of its natural defenses and intelligence were an important part of the experience. In my mind, an adult animal best meets my personal objectives these days because in addition to instinct and senses (which all ages possess) they also have enough life experience to contextualize threats. I am not a trophy hunter in terms of requiring a certain antler score or size, but I limit myself to adult game animals that have both the natural defenses and the wisdom to apply them.
To each his/her own. In my case, after close to 20 years of big game hunting, my quarry deserves the edge that can only come from having lived long enough to make mistakes and learn from them.