CABOT, Vt. — A Vermont native who grew up on a farm in Cabot is participating in the summer Olympics as head coach of the Nigerian men’s basketball team.

Will Voight played soccer in college but went on to become a basketball coach in the NBA development league and of the Vermont Frost Heaves.

He said he had coached two players on the Nigerian team while he was coaching in the NBA development league. He told Vermont Public Radio that those players brought his name to the Nigerian Basketball Federation.

“I had worked camps in Nigeria about 10 years ago. So I had spent a fair amount of time in Nigeria doing some basketball there, so there was a little bit of familiarity with the country and the culture,” he said. “But certainly, (the Nigerian Basketball Federation) rolled the dice with hiring a Vermont kid.”

His mother is Ellen Bryant Voigt, a former Vermont Poet Laureate and winner of a MaCarthur “Genius” Fellowship, and his father, Fran, founded the New England Culinary Institute.

The expectations are low for the Nigerian team in the Rio Olympics but it did win the AfroBasket Tournament, competing against five of the top African teams.

“There’s never been an African team in history of the Olympics to make it out of group play. So right now that’s our focus,” Voight said. “Because once you get it out of group play, it’s almost like the NCAA tournament. It’s single-game elimination. Anything can happen in that setting.”