The reason that I mention UT Austin is that if I'm in a situation where I think that a "physics Ph.D." is a negative, then it becomes a "degree from UT Austin" and in the Austin area, that's always a positive. It's a positive because UT Austin (and the other Texas) universities have positive reputations in the Austin area. Think particle-wave duality and it makes sense.
In NYC and Silicon Valley, everyone is an outsider so there is no major advantage in getting a degree from somewhere local. There is a *huge* advantage in being located in that area. If you are in the NYC area, and someone wants to interview you, they can call you at 9:00 a.m. and you can be in their office at noon.
I work in a major financial firm. About two-thirds of my coworkers have Ph.D.'s, and the remaining have masters degrees with heavy work experience.