Struggling for something to show between plays during the football games he directed, Verna came up with a way to solve the act of blindingly looking for the part of the video tape, still only being used sparingly in TV, that he was looking for. He realized he could send audio beeps to an unused audio track on the tape as it recorded live action, and then be able to find the moment that a play on the tape was about to start.
He would go on to direct or produce five Super Bowls, an Olympics and LiveAid as well as co-direct what he said was actually his greatest achievement, “RECOiL.”
He earned a Lifetime Achievement Award from the all those snobs at the Directors Guild of America in 1995.
Verna is survived by Carol, his wife of 45 years; daughters Tracy and Jenny; a son, Eric and three grandchildren.