Ohio, Pennsylvania, Detroit, the northern midwest: lots of unemployed people that used to have good jobs in manufacturing or other industries where college degrees weren't necessary.
Las Vegas: gangsters, gamblers, prostitutes and bums? Not a lot of need for education in this town, either.
Newark, Buffalo and Memphis: I dunno... I'm stumped on those. Though I did guess Buffalo.
Newark is a total dump. It is consistently ranked among the top five most dangerous cities in America. Its proximity to NYC and very low cost of living make it a haven for thugs and undesirables. That's also why it has so many people. It's a city in terms of population only. There is nothing else in Newark but a lot of bad news, and certainly no industry.
And I think that we should all take care to not equate "lots of people with a degree" with "wisdom" or that those with higher education are always the best arbiters of what is "best" for everyone. Many of the wisest and best people I have ever known are not college graduates.
I agree with your second point. Though even if one thing doesn't equal the other, there is a correlation.