A graduate of the Questrom School of Business, followed by a master's degree from the Wheelock College of Education, Leon Spivak recorded an impressive athletic and academic record while at Boston University.

A football letterman on the 1935 (3-4-2), 1936 (5-1-2) and 1937 (6-2-0) teams, and captain of the 1937 eleven, Leon was described in the HUB: "Captain Spivack preferred the unheralded drudgery of blocking, player and a grand leader, Spiv bowed out, as was characteristic of him, playing a great game against Boston College."

In that game, the Terriers emerged victorious and for the first time "entered the game as favorites." He was named Athlete of the Year in 1938.

His post-season accolades included First Team Jewish All-America as a junior and senior, Third Team All-New England his junior year, and Honorable Mention All-East and Honorable Mention All-America following his senior year.