This section requires expansion with: information on parentage and pre-college education. (August 2012)
McHugh grew up on Long Island and played basketball and soccer in high school. His father, Frank McHugh, was a track coach at a different high school. McHugh graduated from the University at Buffalo and received his master's degree from Syracuse University.
Prior to joining NBC, he worked at Newsday (1999-2001), WTHI in Terre Haute, Indiana (2004-2007), KOKH in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (2007-2009), and ESPN The Magazine (2001-2007). On April 5, 2010, The Daily Line debuted with McHugh as host. The show consisted of a four-person panel (host McHugh, handicapper Rob DeAngelis, comedian Reese Waters, and Jenn Sterger) which discussed, often with heavy satire, sports-related topics that were popular that day and aired on Versus. However, the show was canceled due to low viewership on November 4, 2010. McHugh would be retained by the network to originally work on NHL coverage, mostly on NHL Overtime and Hockey Central.
In 2011, McHugh began the year as the host of NHL Live, the network's pre and post game show that airs before and after each NHL telecast. He also contributed to NBC's Stanley Cup coverage, hosting Games 1 and 2. In the summer of 2011, McHugh stepped into the role of host for NBC's live daily coverage of the Tour de France. In the fall, he contributed to the NBC Sports Network's college football coverage as the host of the newly created College Football Talk, a weekly wrap up show. Additionally, he served each week as the host for the network's studio show before and after game coverage.
2012 saw McHugh return to the NBC and NBC Sports Network coverage of the NHL as lead studio host. He hosted NHL Live several times weekly and the NHL on NBC intermission report weekly. He finished off the 2011-2012 NHL season in his biggest role to date, hosting every game of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals. He served as a reporter for NBC's Super Bowl XLVI pre-game coverage. McHugh expanded his portfolio even farther as he was be a part of NBC Sports's coverage of the 2012 Summer Olympics.
McHugh hosted the afternoon action on NBC Sports Network daily throughout the games. In the fall, he continued to host NBC's college football studio show alongside Doug Flutie and newcomer Hines Ward. In November 2012, McHugh hosted NBC Sports Network’s Carrier Classic Countdown, live from the deck of the USS Bataan, as well as pre-game, halftime and post-game coverage. He made his Winter Olympic debut as a hockey host at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi for NBC.