Rough set is mainly concerned with the approximations of objects through an equivalence relation on a universe. Matroid is a combinatorial generalization of linear independence in vector spaces. In this paper, we define a parametric set family, with any subset of a universe as its parameter, to connect rough sets and matroids. On the one hand, for a universe and an equivalence relation on the universe, a parametric set family is defined through the lower approximation operator. This parametric set family is proved to satisfy the independent set axiom of matroids, therefore it can generate a matroid, called a parametric matroid of the rough set. Three equivalent representations of the parametric set family are obtained. Moreover, the parametric matroid of the rough set is proved to be the direct sum of a partition-circuit matroid and a free matroid. On the other hand, since partition-circuit matroids were well studied through the lower approximation number, we use it to investigate the parametric matroid of the rough set. Several characteristics of the parametric matroid of the rough set, such as independent sets, bases, circuits, the rank function and the closure operator, are expressed by the lower approximation number.