Pete Massaro found out firsthand that you don't keep Joe Paterno waiting.

Massaro, a 6-foot-4, 245-pound defensive end from Marple Newtown, called the Penn State coach to orally commit last night, and after pleasantries were exchanged, there was dead silence.

Paterno spoke up.

"He said, 'I'm waiting to hear you say it,' " Massaro said. "So I did. I said, 'I'm coming to Penn State.' "

Massaro's decision came down to two schools: Penn State and Boston College. After visiting the Eagles' campus in late July, the senior started to feel a pull toward State College.

He first took an unofficial visit in April and then attended a camp at Happy Valley in June.

"I just got a great feel up there," said Massaro, who also had Georgia Tech and Syracuse on his short list. "I liked all the coaches. [Defensive line coach] Larry Johnson is a great teacher."

Penn State linebackers coach Ron Vanderlinden was Massaro's recruiter. Massaro planned on calling Vanderlinden with the good news, but went to the big guy instead.

"He's a great guy. I can't wait to play for him," said Massaro, dispelling the myth that recruits shy away from Penn State out of fear that Paterno may retire soon.

A three-star prospect, according to the recruiting Web site, Massaro is explosive at the end position. Last year, as a junior, he recorded 53 tackles (14 for loss) and five sacks while earning second-team Class AAA all-state honors.

Massaro gives the Lions nine commitments from the Class of 2008.