He’s Found that ‘McLovin’ Feeling

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Andrew Perloff is one of the “Danettes” — an integral part of Dan Patrick’s eponymous show.

MILFORD, Conn.—Fear not, Andrew Perloff, the “Dan Patrick Embraces Judaism” story will have to wait for another day.
This one’s really all about you, which, if nothing else should make Mom and Dad, both of whom work at Rodeph Sholom and still live in Lower Merion, happy.
So for the kid who once got dunked on by Kobe Bryant at a JCC pickup game and has found a unique way to put his Dartmouth education to use, there can really only be one reaction: He’s McLovin’ it.
That’s what they call Andrew Perloff on the Dan Patrick Show, performed live weekdays on Direct TV and the NBC Sports Network, and on Sirius XM and hundreds of terrestrial radio stations from 9 a.m. to noon. Patrick and his four sidekicks, the Danettes, sit inside a cozy studio in the back of a nondescript building atop a Subway in this quaint town just outside New Haven.
Perloff earned his McLovin’ sobriquet thanks to his resemblance to the nerdy character played by Christopher Mintz-Plasse in the 2007 Seth Rogen-written comedy, Superbad.
There’s some debate over exactly who came up with the name, but the consensus seems to be Patrick said he looked like he could be McLovin’s uncle and it stuck.
Since then, McLovin’ and the other Danettes, known on the show as Fritzy, Paulie and Seton — who had all worked with Patrick previously at ESPN before he went out on his own — have become cult heroes. Not only do they produce the show, book the guests and even sign autographs at public meet-and-greets, but they kibitz with Patrick on the air, a schtick that’s served them all well.
Especially the guy who, as the story goes, showed up on the set one day to observe for Sports Illustrated — and never left. “He’s smart enough to play dumb,” said Patrick, who had Perloff worried throughout the show he’d steal McLovin’s thunder by throwing around a few Yiddish phrases to change the focus of the story. “He sort of finds a different role each day, whereas the other Danettes’ roles are pretty much the same, so it’s tougher on Andrew to be able to do that each day.”
Patrick recalled how Perloff made himself a place on the broadcast. “We were doing the show out of my house and he came up to blog about the show and put it on si.com. We just enjoyed his company. We didn’t know he was gonna show up everyday. He never left and I had the idea of putting him on the air. At that point, management was OK” with the move, “because they’d already had the other guys on. He blended in so well. He understood the team quality to it and his role. I was very lucky. But I never would’ve envisioned that guy’s gonna be on the air and be on my show and provide what he has.”
Neither would Perloff, who’s frankly amazed the way it’s all played out. “If this was another show and I had an idea, most hosts would not let guys like me open my mike and speak as much,” said the 44-year-old Perloff, whose background was in writing and producing, working for Fox Sports, the NFL and the YES Network, before joining Sports Illustrated, where he met Patrick. “But Dan, for some reason, lets his guys really get their moment in the spotlight.”
Even in the movies. Adam Sandler, long a good buddy of Patrick’s, gets him small parts in all his films. So why not the Danettes, too, with Perloff and the gang having cameos in Pixels and That’s My Boy, with possibly more to follow.
“I really wasn’t supposed to be on the air,’’ said Perloff, who runs Dan’s website on the air and also writes NFL previews for S.I. with a strong preference — naturally — for the Eagles. “But once it started, it became a steamroller and people got to know us. The celebrity caught all four of us by surprise. All of a sudden, people knew our names everywhere. Now when I’m on the street or walk into a market or I’m in a restaurant, people yell, ‘McLovin!’ ”
Back home, though, or among his friends, he’s still Andrew, Andy or Perl. That’s where Carol and Tom Perloff raised Andrew and his two younger brothers, David — who was a senior teammate of then Lower Merion freshman sensation Kobe Bryant — and Sam, along with older sister Jennifer. They attended Main Line Reform Temple, where Andrew was Bar Mitzvahed, giving his speech about “Jews in Sports” on the bimah.
Tom, who grew up in Abington and attended Penn, had Eagles season tickets and also took his kids to watch the Phillies, Flyers and Sixers. After years working in the wholesale grocery business, he re-invented himself at Rodeph Sholom, where he’s now director of finance, while Carol serves as the synagogue’s director of communications.
Neither of Perloff’s parents would have predicted this type of success for him, though. Who would? “I was always a behind-the scenes-guy,” said Perloff, an English major, who wrote for the school paper at Dartmouth when the school’s quarterback was Jay Fiedler — grandson of famed Boston Pops’ conductor Arthur Fiedler, who would play briefly for the Eagles — while current Detroit Tigers’ manager Brad Ausmus was lighting up the baseball diamond.
“I got out of school and applied to Georgetown law school and for a copy editing job at a sports website,” said Perloff, who still gets home periodically to see his folks and his two brothers, while his sister lives in Boston. “I turned down law school, but I have no regrets. Sports doesn’t pay as much as a lot of things, and there’s always somebody willing to take your job for next to no money. But I have a job that doesn’t feel like work!”
However, he does have more than an hour commute each way from his apartment in Brooklyn Heights, where he lives with his wife Sarah — a Boston native — and daughters Lucy, 4, and Emma, 3. Once he arrives on set around 7:30 a.m., it’s time to run through the day’s news, finding interesting bits for Patrick to discuss, with McLovin’ often playing the fool.
That’s usually the way it works. “He’s very resourceful and has an ability to laugh at himself, which is the one trait you have to have,’’ explained Patrick, who’s taking the show and all the Danettes to Los Angeles this week, where he tapes “Sports Jeopardy.” “They sort of feed off each other. It’s almost a competition that goes on that other side of the glass. Look, we didn‘t go to an Ivy League school. He did. I don’t think you go to Dartmouth and say, ‘This is what I’m gonna do with my education.’ But he uses his education on the show. He wears a lot of hats. He just has to know one day this will all end and he does have to leave.”
Not if McLovin’ has anything to say about it. “I’d do it forever,’’ said Perloff, who’ll be busy Saturdays during the fall in his role for S.I. interviewing former campus greats at college football tailgate parties around the country. “Dan might not, but I would. How am I ever gonna top this with another job?”
Contact: [email protected]; 215-832-0729.

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