- Lee Huber
- Hometown (Last School)
- Louisville, KY (St. Xavier)
- 1938-39, 1939-40, 1940-41
- February 16, 1919
Obituary – Lee G. Huber, who played for Rupp, dies at 86, Lexington Herald-Leader (September 24, 2005) by Jillian Ogawa
A true Kentucky Wildcat, former athlete Lee G. Huber was laid in his coffin wearing a University of Kentucky tie with his casket covered by a UK blanket.
The former All-America basketball guard and tennis player died Tuesday evening of a heart attack in Orlando (Fla.) Regional Medical. He was 86.
“He was a real genuine person and cared about people,” said his son-in-law, Van Donnan of Orlando. “He was quite humble for all his accomplishments.”
Mr. Huber, who was born in Louisville, played basketball for UK from 1938 to 1941 under coach Adolph Rupp. He averaged 5.4 points a game his junior year and 5.9 his senior year. He scored a total of 312 points in 64 games and was named All-America, first team Southeastern Conference, and All-SEC Tournament in the 1940-41 season.
He played one year pro for the Akron (Ohio) Goodyear Wingfoots, where he was offered $10,000 a year, said grandson David Powers, 32, from Orlando. Mr. Huber left professional basketball because he thought it wouldn’t support his family.
“He was just a good family man and he didn’t know pro basketball would make it,” Powers said. “Some people would think he was crazy. He thought of his family.”
After his pro basketball stint, Mr. Huber served four years in the Navy during World War II. He was stationed in the Pacific.
When he returned, he sold furniture. He worked 30 years for various furniture companies, Powers said, including a period as vice president for the Thomasville furniture company. Mr. Huber had lived in Orlando since 1972.
Powers said Mr. Huber never missed a game on TV.
“In our community, Bay Hill, there is a lot of Kentucky people. They kept the Kentucky spirit alive. They would get together,” Powers said.
Fans still remembered Mr. Huber as well, and some even visited his Orlando home to ask for an autograph.
“He was still signing autographs until last month,” Powers said. “A lot of people really admired him.”
Powers, who said he will miss his grandfather’s stories very much, related his favorite: UK won a game against Vanderbilt and Rupp gave Mr. Huber the game ball. However, Mr. Huber sold it that night to a fan for $10. The next day, Rupp asked for the ball back.
“Coach Rupp was so mad,” Powers said, laughing.
At the 100-year anniversary UK basketball banquet held in 2003, another game ball was sold to charity for $20,000, Powers said.
Powers said Mr. Huber “told Tubby Smith, ‘Isn’t it funny that it sold for $20,000 and I only got $10 for it?'”
A funeral service is scheduled for 10 a.m. today at the chapel of Woodlawn Memorial Park and Funeral Home in Orlando. Mr. Powers is survived by his son and his daughter, Sandy Donnan