The nominees for the ninth annual BET Awards were announced earlier today (May 12) during a live taping of 106 & Park.

Atlanta rap giant T.I. leads the rap honorees with three nods. The self-proclaimed “King of the South” is up against Lil Wayne, Kanye West, Young Jeezy and Rick Ross in the best male hip-hop category, while his clip for “Live Your Life” is also competing with Ye in the video of the year category for the Chi-Town MC’s animated “Heartless” video. Tip is going head to head with T-Pain, Soulja Boy, Keri Hilson and Beyonce for the coveted viewers choice award.

Lil Mama is battling M.I.A. and Trina in the best female hip-hop artist category. XXL Freshman Kid Cudi is up against Keri Hilson, M.I.A., Ryan Leslie, Jazmine Sullivan and Keri Hilson for best new artist. Benny Boom, Rik Cordero, Gil Green, Chris Robinson and Hype Williams are all up for video director of the year.

Moving on to the big screen, Chicago rapper turned thespian Common is nominated for best male actor along with Samuel L. Jackson, Idris Elba, Will Smith and Jamal Woolard. Former Dreamgirls Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson will battle it out for best female actor as well as Rosario Dawson, Taraji P. Henson and Angela Bassett, who portrayed  Biggie’s mother in the rapper’s biopic Notorious.

The 2009 BET Awards will be hosted by Jamie Foxx - who is up for three of his own statues on Sunday, June 28 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles. Visit the show's official site for a full list of nominees. – Elan Mancini