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Mamoru Banba
Mamoru banba
Character information
Rōmaji Banba Mamoru
Kanji 番場衛
Gender Male
Birthday June 25th
Bench press 145 kg
Status
Affiliation Taiyō Sphinx
Year 3rd (high school)
Jersey 50
40 Yard Dash 5.5 seconds
Position Center
Defensive Tackle
Team Taiyō Sphinx
Team Japan
Debut
Chapter 39th Down
Episode Episode 18
Voice actors
Japanese Taiten Kusunoki
Image gallery

Mamoru Banba (番場衛, Banba Mamoru) is the massive center of the team, Banba is the Sphinx's ace player and captain.

Appearance

Banba is one of the largest linesman in the series. He has a wide, muscular frame which forms the center of the heaviest line in Japan. Like all other members of the Taiyō Sphinxes, he has tan skin and stylized Egyptian eyeliner. He is mockingly dubbed "Baldy" by Hiruma Yōichi (for obvious reasons).

During the Kanto Tournament, Banba possesses numerous scars on his face and body due to the intense training he underwent in preparation for the tournament.

Personality

Despite being an excellent linesman, Banba is level-headed and calm. He is strong-willed, matter-of-fact, demanding, and not afraid to point out the errors of his teammates. Despite this, he appears to be on friendly terms with the other seniors of the Sphinx. After his match against the Deimon Devil Bats where he was defeated by Kurita, Banba is humbled and undergoes rigorous training to better himself. Prior to the match, he (like his other teammates) believed playing against Deimon would be an easy victory.

Banba's courage and resolve commands the respect of even the likes of Rikiya Gao who admired his spirit to protect Taiyō's sub-par quarterback, Kiminari Harao, even if it meant being dangerously injured. Later on, Banba coaches Kurita for Deimon's match against Hakushū where he taught the importance of killing intent and helps to unlock Kurita's inner mental fortitude.

Plot

Zokugaku Arc

Banba first demonstrates his abilities by single-handedly beating up the Ha-Ha Brothers when they react to the Sphinx's criticisms of them. This experience drives the three to work harder to defeat the Sphinx's line. While Banba stands strong against Kurita for much of Taiyō's game against Deimon, he is eventually defeated by the Devil Bat Dive on the tying two-point conversion. Banba submits the match against the Nasa Aliens to the Devil Bats, believing them to have proven themselves.

Autumn Tournament Arc

Prior to the Kantō Tournament, Banba undergoes harsh training, supposedly due to a harsh defeat at the hands of Seibu. This physically and mentally toughens him, and leaves his face heavily scarred. Unfortunately, this was insufficient for him to stand a chance against the Dinosaurs' powerhouse lineman Gaō. Gaō crushes the new Taiyō line formation, called Tutankhamun's Mask, and eventually Banba is injured to the extent that he must be carried off the field on a stretcher. Shortly afterward, Harao forfeits the game, making him the first quarterback to escape injury against the Dinosaurs.

Banba appears as a spectator at several of the other games in the Kantō Tournament, and later as a helper in the Devil Bats' baseball game prior to the final game in the Tokyo Dome. He trains Kurita by boxing against him, which prepares Kurita to stand up against Gaō longer in the Hakushū-Deimon game. He also appears at the Devil Bat's Kantō championship celebration, and is one of the three to help inflate the balloon for the punishment game. Banba becomes Togano's personal coach in preparation for the Christmas Bowl.

Youth World Cup Arc

Banba is chosen by Sena and Monta to be an offense linesman in Team Japan under the advice of Gaō, who stated that linesmen with a boiling spirit were preferable even if they could not match the sheer power of Kurita or himself. He flies off with the team to New York in order to compete and manages to proceed to the finals which ends in a tie between Japan and Team USA.

Relationship

Taiyo Sphinx

Kiminari Harao

Harao is the quarterback of the Taiyō Sphinxes and plays alongside Banba in their match against Seibu, Deimon and Hakushū. Harao places a lot of his confidence in Banba's ability to protect him and hold off enemy attacks. However, this confidence becomes a tension point during their match against Deimon where Harao accuses the linesmen of inadequacy before acknowledging his own shortcomings. Banba is unafraid to point out his teammates hypocrisy and shamelessness, and Harao quickly regains his composure showing that he deeply respects his captain and that the two have a slightly asymmetrical relationship.

Rival Teams

Rikiya Gaō

Gaō respects Banbo despite the fact that he was able to easily defeat him in the Kanto Tournament. Banba, unlike many other players, was determined to fearlessly protect his quarterback even if it meant sustaining injuries that would later disable him from playing past half-time. Because of this, Gaō acknowledges Banba as a man of "boiling spirit" and strong killing intent whilst playing. Banba, likewise, holds similar esteem for Gaō.

Ryokan Kurita

Kurita is, in many respects, like Banba in terms of his role in the team (i.e. the strategic center of the line). At first, Banba is deeply skeptical to whether Kurita is able to defeat him but after he is knocked over for the first time in his football career, he forms a deep admiration of Kurita and the two develop a strong bond. However, Banba is also able to see that the soft-hearted Kurita lacks the killing intent to beat Gaō and so takes it upon himself to coach Kurita before the Deimon-Hakushū match out of respect and fondness for his friend.

Techniques/Strategies

  • Pyramid Line - Banba and the other Taiyō linemen create a V-shaped "pyramid" formation, which takes advantage of their heavily-built players. This grants a great deal of protection to the quarterback and is a formidable obstacle when used by the defense. The line's weakness is that it is simplistic and overly reliant on brute force and weight.
  • Tutankhamen's Mask - The linemen arrange themselves more tightly together than normal, making the spaces between them narrower and forming closer to the quarterback. This is alluded to the Death Mask of the Pharaoh. In theory, the line was made even more secure and harder for the opposing team to break through to sack the quarterback, but it was still defeated very quickly by Gaō.

Trivia

  • According to Harao, Banba comes from a poor family.
  • He is the second-oldest looking player in Team Japan, Gondayū Yamabushi being the first oldest looking.
  • Banba is the high-school record keeper for squats.
  • Banba can understand power talk.

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