Justin Berna enters his second year as Head Coach for the Avila University football program. Under Coach Berna, the 2011 Eagles had the second best season in school history finishing with the best record (4-6, 4-5) since 2003 (5-5) and doubling their wins from the previous year. In Berna's first year, the Eagles set three school records including: points vs. a conference opponent (50), touchdown passes in a game (4), all-conference awards (16) and the Eagles were awarded their first ever BSN All-American Award with Tyler Cardwell being named a second-team safety. The Eagle Football program also improved the team GPA from the previous season while improving on the field in 2011.
Coach Berna was previously the assistant head coach and offensive coordinator at MacMurray College in Jacksonville, IL. Under Coach Berna's play calling the Highlander offense set seven offensive school records, one conference record and averaged 30.1 points per game in 2009. These records include: most points in a single game (68), most passes completed in a single game (33), most passing yards in a single game (465), most touchdown passes in a single game (7), which is also a UMAC conference record, highest completion percentage for a QB in a season (62%), longest pass play from scrimmage (86 yard touchdown), and most career touchdown receptions (25). Coach Berna also handled all of the Highlanders strength and conditioning responsibilities.
Prior to MacMurray, Coach Berna was the wide receivers and running backs coach at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo . At Lindenwood, Coach Berna also handled all of the team's strength and conditioning responsibilities. During Coach Berna's three seasons at Lindenwood, the team reached the national playoffs twice in back-to-back seasons in 2007 and 2008, reaching the national semifinals and finishing with an 11-2 record and No. 3 national ranking in 2008. In 2007, the Lindenwood offense averaged 38 points per game and 6.2 yards per carry, leading the nation in that category and helping the Lindenwood football program win the Heart of America Athletic Conference Championship and finish with a 10-2 record and a No. 12 national ranking. In 2008, the Lindenwood offense improved to average 40.1 points per game and 298 yards passing per game, leading the Lindenwood football program to its first-ever playoff win and a trip to the Final Four . During his three seasons at Lindenwood, Coach Berna compiled a regular season record of 24-9, a conference championship, two playoff berths, and two playoff wins.
Before joining the coaching staff at Lindenwood, Berna was a two-year letter winner and captain for the Lindenwood Lions football program in 2004 and 2005. The Lions football program also won the Heart of America Athletic Conference Championship and a trip to the national playoffs in 2004. Berna received his Master of Arts in Education with an emphasis in strength and conditioning in May 2008 and his Bachelor of Arts in English in 2006 from Lindenwood University. Berna was named to the academic All-Conference Team and was named to the Dean's List while at Lindenwood. The Lindenwood 2004 undefeated regular season team was inducted into the University's Athletics Hall of Fame in Fall of 2010.
Prior to playing and coaching at Lindenwood University, Berna was a two-year letter winner at West Hills Community College in California. While at West Hills, Berna completed his Associate Degree in Liberal Arts in May 2004 and was once again a captain for the football program. The Falcon football program earned back-to-back bowl-game berths in 2002 and 2003, winning the Pacific Graffiti Bowl in 2003. Berna was named to the academic All-Conference team and was chosen as the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) Athlete of the Year at West Hills. As a college football athlete, Berna compiled a record of 31-13 and reached the post season three times.