The president of the S.C. Press Association has expressed "strong disappointment" in the actions of South Carolina football coach Steve Spurrier in a letter to USC's president, Dr. Harris Pastides.

Bill Hawkins, president of the SCPA and editor and publisher of The Post and Courier, asked Pastides to intervene in the situation after Spurrier refused to speak to the media at his weekly news conference Tuesday unless a columnist for The State newspaper left the room.

"(Spurrier's) actions discriminated against newspaper reporters in general, and were punitive to an individual newspaper columnist with whom Coach Spurrier had a disagreement," Hawkins wrote. "This certainly is not appropriate for a coach at our state's flagship university."

Hawkins asked that Pastides "instruct your football coach to treat all media equally, including the 115 newspaper members of our association."

Spurrier touched off the controversy Tuesday by informing reporters that he would not speak to them as long as Ron Morris, a columnist for The State, remained in the room. He eventually met with about a dozen reporters in his office. Spurrier accused Morris of inaccurate reporting in a story that included a reference to basketball point guard Bruce Ellington joining the football team.