YES. Single most important lesson I learned while pursuing a degree in Aeronautical Science: A degree helps a lot, but only by demonstrating that you are not stupid. It does NOT have to be a degree in aviation. It is not a legal/FAA requirement on any level...its a "get your foot in the door" thing. Protip: getting a degree in something marketable which is NOT AVIATION would also demonstrate "not stupid." Get a degree in business or whatever, take flying lessons at the cheaper FBO/Flight Club/lone wolf instructor.
Honestly, if I had a time machine, that's one of the first messages I would send back to myself. I've met ERAU grads who are supervising a Kinkos. Do it cheaper and faster.
BTW, I lost my financial aid & dad died...didn't finish my too-expensive degree. But now I fly UAVs for 6-figures, and own a plane that I fly for fun. When I have kids, gonna push 'em to get a scholarship, join the military, or go to college in E.U.