Leadership characterized the life and career of Howard Grubbs, who was associated with athletics for more than 50 years. At Kaufman High School, he lettered in four sports, and at Texas Christian University he was All-Southwest Conference quarterback and captain of its first championship football team in 1929. He was named the Outstanding Player in the 1930 Dixie Classic All-Star game in Dallas after throwing two touchdown passes. He served as head football coach at Lufkin High School for three years and returned to TCU as Freshman Coach in 1934. In 1935, he became TCU's athletic director and doubled as an assistant football coach until he was appointed executive secretary of the Southwest Conference in 1950. He remained the executive secretary for 23 years while also serving as secretary-treasurer of the Cotton Bowl Athletic Association. Grubbs was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in 1967.