February 2, 2012
Monroe's DiBernardo JC coach of the year
Monroe College coach Marcus DiBernardo has been named the National Soccer Coaches Association of America's junior college men's Division I national coach of the year.
|Marcus DiBernardo (center) receives his award from Mondo's Chad Luttrell (left) and NSCAA president Paul Payne.
Photo courtesy of Monroe College
DiBernardo was presented the award at the NSCAA's 65th annual Awards Banquet in Kansas City, Mo. He is the first Monroe coach to win the award and the first coach in New York to have won the award in 10 years.
"I am humbled to have won this prestigious award," DiBernardo said. "It's an incredible honor. But while individual accolades are very satisfying, we can never lose sight of our ultimate goals of providing opportunities for young men to benefit from the opporunity they get from participating in the Monroe soccer program."
DiBernardo led the Mustangs to the NJCAA championship game and a No. 1 ranking in the final NSCAA national poll. The Mustangs posted a 14-2-1 record while allowing only 10 goals (four of which came in the national championship game), while scoring 60 goals of their own. In the past two seasons, DiBernardo has fashioned a 33-4-1 mark.
"Coach DiBernardo has earned this award," Monroe athletic director Bert Shillingford said, "for not only the remarkable success his teams have had on the field, but also because he has put together a full soccer program for players in a range of skill levels that turns them into young men with the potential to ahcieve not only in sport, but as productive members of society."
In three years at Monroe, DiBernardo has grown men's soccer to include a junior varsity as well as a soccer academy, which will debut this fall. More than 80 student-athletes participate in men's soccer programs and that number is expected to rise.
A native of Middlefield, Conn., DiBernardo played and coached at Central Connecticut State University. He was a coach at MLK High School when it won the 2006 PSAL boys soccer championship. He also coached Brandeis, Truman, Platt, and Portland High School teams, as wel as a number of other teams and clubs.
DiBernardo has forged a reputation for coaching an attacking style of soccer.
"I like my players to have freedom on the field while fitting into the team concept," he said. "Players who come with a positive attitude and great work ethic are always welcome here. They must understand that the team is the priority at Monroe, not the individual."