Maryland has completed a negotiated buyout of defensive coordinator Todd Bradford's contract -- clearing the way for the school to hire a replacement.

The Sun reported Dec. 22 that Bradford -- whose defense  ranked last in the Atlantic Coast Conference, surrendering an average of 34.2 points and 457.2 yards per game -- was likely out.

The school has now reached a buyout agreement with Bradford. The terms are not yet public.

"We appreciate Todd's efforts this past season and wish him well in his future endeavors," Maryland coach Randy Edsall said in a news release. "It is the right time for us to move forward in a different direction."

Maryland's injury-riddled defense suffered its worst moments in the last game. The team's season-ending, 56-41 defeat at North Carolina State was particularly painful because the Terps held a 27-point, third-quarter lead before surrendering 42 consecutive points.

Bradford's contract was for a guaranteed $350,000 per year. No word yet on who will replace him. Some fan sites had speculated about Penn State assistants Ron Vanderlinden and Larry Johnson, but neither is being hired by Maryland and Penn State said both will remain. Vanderlinden is a former Maryland head coach.

Bradford, hired from Southern Mississippi, was at Maryland for just one season.

Bradford was a replacement for Don Brown, who had served as defensive coordinator under former coach Ralph Friedgen. Edsall had been impressed enough with Brown — who employed multiple blitz packages — that he wanted to retain him. But Brown left for Connecticut and Bradford — originally hired as Maryland's inside linebackers coach — was promoted to coordinator in February.

The Terps finished 2-10 but have made recent recruiting strides. The team will also enter the 2012 season with a new offensive coordinator, Mike Locksley.