University is suppose to concentrate on theory, I think - which is something pretty difficult to get with experience. To be really successful with computers, you need both.
That depends on the university of course. You see a lot of businesses complaining that degress don't prepare people for work; theory doesn't make people immediatly productive (or employable for that matter).
If there was more grounding in theory then I wouldn't dismiss degrees so easily; because theory demands thought.