BEREA — There should be nothing surprising about Hue Jackson's emotions that followed the Cleveland Browns 12th loss in 12 games.
Way back in January, Jackson was greeted with cheers and applause from every employee waiting in the lobby.
We are going to chase greatness, Jackson promised.
Now he's chasing a single, solitary, stinking win.
Scholars may have to investigate, but this technically seems to be the opposite of greatness.
Jackson feels it. He cares. He works. He tries. As he said, he didn't suddenly become illiterate at football (though one could make the case that the Browns have made a lot of smart coaches lose their marbles).
But he's not won a single game, and he's hitting historic marks he'd rather avoid. ESPN Stats & Information reports that the Browns have a 43 percent chance of losing every game this season, and the team's point differential of minus-155 is the worst in the league.
Going back to last season, the Browns have lost 15 games in a row. Only five other teams in the last 30 years have lost 15 consecutive regular-season games.
To repeat: Thirty years.
There is plenty of responsibility to share for this latest fiasco. It starts with a roster that in the 12th week of the season has 18 rookies and a 37-year-old quarterback starting? Josh McCown is a wonderful man, but an 0-11 team turned to a 37-year-old for a win.
On the field there have also been mistakes. On Sunday, the Browns lost badly to a team that punted nine times. The product is not getting better. The offense has scored 10, 7, 9 and 13 points the past four games. Three of the first six losses were by six points or less. The last four have been by 25, 21, 15 and 14.
It's hard to believe, but a team that has been a gargantuan mess since 1999 is setting new marks for futility.
Which has to eat up the people involved in trying to make it work, most especially Jackson, who for the first time showed the emotion following the loss to the Giants.
But for those who have been around the Browns since 1999, Jackson's words and emotions were merely wash, rinse, repeat.
It seems that everyone with the team at some point hits a breaking point, from Butch Davis' panic attack to Mike Holmgren's "don't call me for playoff tickets" rant. The list could go on, but you get the idea.
It seems that at some point the coach talks about progress amid losing, and while talking about how hard it is to build a team, points to the two or three players who are improving.
On Sunday, Jackson mentioned Seth DeValve.
Which from his point of view is accurate.
But from the point of view of fans who have been there, done that, this seems like being happy that the local McDonald's survived the hurricane.
Only one thing will change this situation, and it's what the Browns set out to do with this latest iteration of its front office and coaching staff. It was to rebuild a roster that went 3-13 in 2015 and build a new culture centered on the effervescence and approach of Jackson. Over time that would lead to success, and it would take more than one or two years. Jimmy Haslam used the phrase "multiyear rebuild" the day the 2015 season ended.
But the Browns have not won for so long the entire notion seems foreign to them. They have to talk about nonsense like "learning to win" while they lose four in a row by almost 20 points per games.
At this point Jackson could cry a Niagara Falls or he could hit a lectern so hard it would break or he could swear or he could lose it. None of that matters, because there's nothing for him to say and there's only one thing for him to do, and that's win.
Everything else has all been seen and heard before.