Did Billy Ray Cyrus Graduate from Howard University?

Getty Billy Ray Cyrus

While Billy Ray Cyrus made his debut at the 2019 BET Awards on June 23, a quick joke during a red carpet interview had viewers wondering if the country music star attended Howard University.

Merely his presence at the awards show known for rewarding excellence in black entertainment was drawing mixed reactions on Twitter, however, when people seemingly found out that the “Old Town Road” singer graduated from Howard, a historically black university, it drew shock and awe from everyone. Even Charlamagne took to social media to voice his uncertainty.

The reaction on Twitter was immediate, but it was also under false pretenses. Here’s what happened: When BET Awards host Regina Hall introduced Cyrus by saying “Howard University’s own,” and he responded with a laugh, people assumed she was being real. But here’s the truth. Hall was absolutely joking with the country star.

Cyrus did not go to Howard University. Nor is he the graduate of another famous Washington D.C. college, Georgetown University. Cyrus attended Georgetown College in Kentucky, small Christian liberal arts school located just west of the Allegheny Mountains, which makes way more sense.

Born on August 25, 1961, in Flatwoods, Kentucky, the “Achy Breaky Heart” singer was an all-star baseball and football player in high school, which earned him a scholarship to Georgetown College. However, he never graduated. Cyrus picked up the guitar at age 20, and dropped out of school to start a band. It’s safe to say his gamble paid off. As one of the most famous names in country music, who’s continuing to make top of the charts hits at age 57, so he made the right choice.

As for his personal life, Cyrus was married to Cindy Smith for five years, but they divorced in 1991. In 1992, he married Leticia “Tish” Cyrus, with whom he has three children, Miley Ray, Braison Chance and Noah Lindsey. He’s also a stepfather to Leticia’s two children from a prior relationship, Brandi and Trace. Cyrus also has a son from his relationship with Kristin Luckey, named Christopher Cyrus.

At the BET Awards, which is airing live from the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles, Cyrus will be performing “Old Town Road” with rapper Lil Nas X. Other performers slated to take the stage include Meek Mill, Fantasia, DJ Khaled, Jeremih, DaBaby, John Legend, Lizzo, Cardi B., and Migos.

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